Tuesday, March 04, 2008

A Small Jewel Box of a House

Years ago, I saw my first Henry Doelger-built home on Flickr and immediately had to know more. A book, Little Boxes by Rob Keil, was published two years ago that has even more delicious photos of these funky little houses. In fact, a whole group of these mid-century designs preside in the Westlake neighborhood of Daly City, a suburb of San Francisco.

These houses were built by Doelger's firm but designed by a small group of architects who must have loved their jobs from the look of the designs. Just check out what they did to the garage doors.

Westlake Garage Doors 1958-1965

It must have been great to have that much artistic freedom. When was the last time you noticed a garage door, let alone it actually looked different than all the other garage doors.

Another great thing about this book is that it includes my favorite thing, FLOOR PLANS! Yes, I love floor plans, especially of small homes. I enjoy studying the beauty of their clean uncluttered spaces and in these cases, their efficiency in design. It is strange how much I love these things.

You should also check out the Westlake section of the official Daly City history site that Rob collaborated on, this was where I received my first dose of Doelger background.

The Little Boxes Book website also has links to articles on Doelger architect Ed Hageman, who designed the "fish and chips" house shown at top. In addition, the site provides tips and resources for restoring and taking care of a Doelger-built home and its period fixtures and materials. This kind of information could be valuable for anyone owing a mid-century abode or just trying to emulate one.

If you have any information on these homes, (you know someone involved in the construction, who lived in one of the houses, or you posses vintage photos or film footage of these homes, I'm sure Rob would love to hear from you at robertjkeil@yahoo.com.

Source: all pictures from littleboxesbook.com.


Kelli said...

These houses are so whimsical! You just can't imagine some stuffy crabby person living there. They must all be eccentric professors in colorful cardigans or funky people who love house plants! Adorable! Thanks for sharing!

Jennifer said...

Those are wonderful houses! I just love houses that exude character.

Anonymous said...

They are adorable and packed with style. Thanks for sharing, I had never heard of these before.

Anonymous said...

This is "Honeywest" and I am responding to your post in my LJ. You do have to join in order to read my LJ. I understand if you do not want to do that. You can call also most of the stuff I post on my flickr page.
Which would be easier... I like your blog, love this post esp and will book mark it.
If you decided to join you do not have to be active and and I would be happy to add you.


Liam's Mom - Gina said...

I love them! I want one! Thanks for posting this. I have never heard of these adorable homes!