Saturday, April 27, 2013

A lovely stone house

It's been awhile since I shared a weekend picture and thought I'd share this adorable stone house I came across last weekend in the Arlington,Virginia suburb of DC.  Houses such as this are always my favorite! I especially like the mature landscaping which provide dappled sunlight in our notoriously hot and humid summers but allow for full sun in our cool winters.  My only comment would be the 'fake' shutters flanking the double windows on the ground floor - don't need them!  What do you think of the house?

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Georgetown Housetour - this weekend!

Don't miss the Georgetown house tour THIS WEEKEND - April 28. This is the longest running house tour in the country and benefits the ministries of St John's Episcopal Church.
 Nine beautiful houses of varying styles will be featured on the tour including these 4 pictured here.
Also included is a delightful tea at St John's Parish Hall. I'm most excited by seeing inside the Georgetown Stables below, long ago converted into a quirky residence. I saw them retouching some paint in preparation for the tour just a few weeks ago and it should prove to be very interesting!
Also upcoming as part of the Georgetown Housetour is a lecture given by architect Gil Schafer on May 9th. Information is at the housetour website. Hope to see you there (at both events)!!
Photos courtesy of the Georgetown Housetour.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Book Review: Michael G. Imber Ranches, Villas, and Houses.

I recently received a copy of the new book Ranches, Villas, and Houses on architect Michael G. Imber and his brand of vernacular, southern-styled classicism which was utterly fascinating to my north-eastern eye.  These projects are so refreshing because they suit their numerous locations: no Cape Cods in the heart of the desert if you know what I mean. Recognize the rendering above from a project in Alys Beach?
The book is broken up into 3 sections covering the subjects at hand. The Butcher Ranch in Gonzales County, TX, seen below is probably his most well known project. Interestingly enough the project was funded by the client's sale of a Georgia O'Keeffe painting - a fair trade, don't you think?
While the styles vary throughout the book and project to project, the attention to detail and great little moments such as the round window or the curvelinear plasterwork remain constant.
I thought the fluted column fireplace in the living room below was a really playful adaptation of a common element which reminded me of a Scandinavian wood stove.
The beaux-arts style renderings which Michael does early on for each project are really beautiful and here he explores the materiality for each project.
This book is full of places you will want to visit like the courtyard pool below!
My favorite project featured in the book is a pair of exquisite Palladian Villas completed for a brother & sister in Roswell, NM. While this may seem a weird fit for New Mexico, the climate is ideal for such a style, the clients are Italian, and honestly, who can ever say no to Palladian anything? (not this architect!)
 The floorplans of both reveals just how personal each house is.
 The brother's house features this kitchen which is probably in my dream house.
Imber recently completed the Southern Living House for the eponymous magazine in 2011. I loved how the early sketches, seen below, reflect so accurately the finished project.
 Don't miss out on this large-scaled gorgeous monograph - a must for any design library!!
All photos courtesy of Rizzoli.