6 posts / 0 new
Last post
Craftsman or not?

I recently purchased a 1902 supposed Craftsman home. However, I've spent days researching the Craftsman designs and layouts and have yet to find one that resembles my home. The porch and balcony look similar to the craftsman style but the roof is quite odd when being compared to other craftsman style roofs.
The interior no longer has any built-ins except for a curio cabinet in the dining room. If there were any other built-ins then they were removed long ago. Also, all of the woodwork that is sometimes unpainted in the craftsman style homes has all been painted over.
Any ideas?

Re: Craftsman or not?

An amazing house you've got there. My first thoughts are that it could have been remodeled on top of a more humble one-story house; the huge roof and half-story could have been added in the 20's replacing a lower roof/s running in opposite directions with other ell additions off the back, etc., etc.
But never mind. There are a range of extraordinary craftsman details abounding on your house. And some puzzling inconsistencies. The nearly-gingerbread cutout ballusters and the round columns do not speak "craftsman" (they are earlier) but when you get down to it, they have been well-coordinated into the whole. The great overhangs of the roof are pure craftsman. The stacked-timber knee braces that march confidently up the gable are pure west-coast bungalow of a very high style indeed, and are the similar scrolled lintels above the porch columns.
The walls being divided into very well-defined horizontal bands is something not often run across on a house with this kind of massing, and is most often associated with Prairie School designs. I would like to see more close-ups of the materials and details in these areas both above and below the windows.
It seems to me that the paint scheme is going to be most important to bring out these bands properly which will have a great effect on how the house reads. The band above the windows should probably not be the same siding color as below. To visually "support" the mass of the roof, this band must read as a structure on its own capable of bearing the "weight".
Getting a really great paint design will make or break this house. Right now it's sort of broken. The roof mass is overwhelming everything else, and the house is visually "struggling" to support it. The possibilities are there, however, and I think a masterful paint job (earth tones, at least five colors, properly coordinated and scaled up/down in layers) is going to pay for itself in added value, and open up the possibility of an expanded market if you were to sell. I can only imagine what the interiors must look like. Is that leaded glass in the transoms above the front windows?

Re: Craftsman or not?

From the picture it is hard to see if or what modifications have been done to the house. It might well be a Sears Kit Home, they had several fancier trim packages than a standard Craftsman houses. Because the corbels seem to match the column tops, I would say that they are original. It does look like an addition may have been added to the back of the house.


Re: Craftsman or not?

I don't think it's one of the sears homes. I've looked for indications on the joists and wood for the sears marking and have yet to find anything.

Re: Craftsman or not?

Interesting...looks like they've fused a couple different styles. Appears to be craftsman (column bases, brackets, etc) but there's some more ornate details that are characteristic in a more Victorian style.

Re: Craftsman or not?

That is a gorgeous house and property!

Try looking on The House Designers site for craftsman house plans, they have tons of craftsman designs. Although I agree with des1219 in that your home may actually fit into a different category besides craftsman too.

Sponsored Stories

TV Listings

Find TV listings for This Old House and Ask This Old House in your area.