Friday, March 28, 2014

Chapin Residence floorplan

One of my favorite books that I've mentioned before is the monograph of H.T. Lindeberg's residential work. Many of his smaller projects are shown including just these 3 intriguing photographs of a rather odd house in Lake Forest, Illinois in 1926 for Lowell C. Chapin, Esq.
If you study the plan you'll notice that the house consists of a rather small entry vestibule and an enormous living room. Thats all for public space! A warren of servants quarters fill the remainder of the first floor while the 2nd floor holds 4 bedrooms. Strange but ultimately practical.
And as you can see the 'simple' house packs a lot of punch with that steep French roofline.  Rather a quirky house and it leads me to wonder how it has changed over the past 90 years or is even still extant.

11 comments:

The Down East Dilettante said...

Pretty darn marvelous, isn't it? One infinitely admires Lindberg.

It appears to be well cared for and loved: http://binged.it/1g8uhRP

Mark Ruffner said...

Hi, Stefan,

I've been looking at the enlarged floor plan and agree that this is a quirky house. I see a large kitchen and many service rooms, but no dining room! It seems unlikely that wealthy people of the 1920s would have combined the living and dining rooms, so I'm left scratching my head!

Stephilius said...

"Rather odd", indeed. One presumes there was some sort of accommodation for eating in that large living room? Or maybe Mr. Chapin, Esq. hadn't any friends....

Very interesting, but I couldn't do without a real dining room. If the building is still there, I expect some later owner fit one in somewhere.

John J. Tackett said...

Stefan, I have long been interested in this house. Another book lists the address as 20 South Stone Gate Road, in case you have readers in the area.

Guy Norred said...

This has long been one of my favorites.

Karena Albert said...

The dining room is a mystery and I would love to know the reasoning. Were they way ahead of their time with an open family area?

xoxo
Karena
The Arts by Karena

William Bailey said...

I am with the majority-the lack of a dining room is odd for that time period. Formality was the norm at that time and to not have one would be strange. Maybe they were ahead of their time and the first to have a "great room". Love to know if anyone has an answer to the dining room questions.

Guy Norred said...

While certainly odd for the time and place to essentially have a single large public room, Lake Forest houses of this period were still often seasonal houses used only for the summer and intermittently through the rest of the year. The Chapins had, or had had, a much larger house on Astor in Chicago and it is possible this house was intended to be a relaxed retreat. The Chapins though apparently had at least some history of going against the norm. They eloped shortly before what was to be an elaborate wedding, causing someone to have to send wires to guests to save them the journey.

An Urban Cottage said...

I'm fascinated by this house. I found a tome Classic Country Estate of Lake Forest that the house was purchased by Mrs. Francis Beidler shortly after its completion. Here's another photo of the house: http://www.ancientfaces.com/photo/mrs-francis-beidler-residence-at-20-s-stone-gate-a/1119456/?collection=latest&collection_id=

It has apparently stayed in the same family. This site lists the present owner as Francis Biedler, III. http://www.ancientfaces.com/photo/mrs-francis-beidler-residence-at-20-s-stone-gate-a/1119456/?collection=latest&collection_id=

Jeff Freeland said...

Many large to middling houses had one large room with combined dining and sitting areas. One generous room was believed better than cutting the house up into many tiny spaces. It was a move to informality, but also to a more manageable life style. Those rooms really were subdivided into discrete areas with different functions and feels. The one above looks to have a dining area, a sunny sitting area in the window bay and another sitting area of different light and character around the fireplace.

Note too the wonderful display pantry. A feature, I think unique to Lindeberg, and used in a number of his homes. An open door from the dining area allows a view into a jewel box like display space, with a couple of right turns in the circulation to screen the view into the kitchen.

Jeff Freeland said...

Hi Stefan, You may know this but there is a Lindeberg design at 2310 Kalorama Rd.; what was the Major David S. Barry house. Beautifully proportioned, if extremely reticent, but a fun window penetrated massive chimney and dormers combination on the east side roof. jefff