You are here
Architecture Preservation 

Lighting of the green at the Boots Motel!

We’ve been watching the restoration of the Boots Court Motel in Joplin, Missouri for years, from the “Save the Boots Motel campaign”,  until they reopened in 2012 and we got to visit and check it out in June 2011. This latest, and possibly the last piece of the  renovation not only highlights what a great job they’re doing for preservation of the motel, but for renovation all along Route 66! “Bringing back the neon” was not invented in the movie “Cars” but it’s an important step to bringing back the…

Read More
Architecture 

More Grooving around the web – Mid-Century Round up

Because we’re signed up for all the email lists so you don’t have to! 🙂 Preservation: The 40th Annual California Preservation Conference returns to San Diego to celebrate the region’s pivotal role in California’s historic preservation movement. For more information visit the website:  www.californiapreservation.org . More Mid-Century Real Estate news: Thanks to our friend Koop Kooper, we found this little gem that just sold in Australia On Saturday morning, the time-warped four-bedder sold under the hammer for $1,425,000 topping the suburb house median by $25,000. Much of the interior remains…

Read More
Architecture Preservation 

Googie and neon sign preservation and museums

One of our favorite mid-century things are Googie signs. There are plenty of photos out there, but one thing is certain and it’s that they’re a dying breed and ripe for preservation efforts. In case you’re not familiar with the term, “Googie” architecture, approximately from 1950-1970, is a futuristic or ultramodern derivative of art moderne and International Style architecture, originating in California in the late 1940s. While using the materials and design vocabulary of other contemporary styles, its jaunty forms and bold streamlining evoked a highly optimistic aspiration to an…

Read More
Architecture Landscape Design 

A Modernist Patio for a Traditional Home

Ted Cleary, ASLA, of Studio Cleary Landscape Architecture continues his contributions on midcentury modern garden design, here with the first of his “Case Study Gardens”.  MCM enthusiasts will be familiar with Arts & Architecture magazine’s legendary design feature known as the “Case Study House Program”.  From its inception near the war’s end in 1945, through 1966, the CSH Program showcased innovative modernist designs, many of them modest, others more grand, meant to address the postwar housing needs of the typical American family. Like the CSH examples, some unbuilt, others still existing,…

Read More
Architecture 

Houses of Spirits

A sampling of Los Angeles midcentury, atomic, and retro liquor stores by new contributor Diane Vallere. Read more about her here. You don’t have to wait until the cocktail hour to appreciate the influence that midcentury modern style had on liquor stores all over the country, but you may want to act quick. The atomic aspect of these houses of spirits can still be seen, but disrepair, changes in management, and retiring business owners are letting these precious gems disappear. Here’s a sampling from Los Angeles: Not sure when this…

Read More
Architecture Preservation 

Long Lost John Lautner Home

With this post, we welcome Marni Epstein, who’s going to be a fabulous addition to our team. Check out her biography and website! Editor Modern Architect John Lautner, who studied under the tutelage of Frank Lloyd Wright, is primarily known for his residential design. As a mid-century architect, his homes had a distinctly warmer quality than more typical austere designs of the time. That is owed much to Lautner’s organic-modern approach in which he embraced earthy tones that were often more inviting than a starker aesthetic. A number of these…

Read More
Architecture Landscape Design 

Giveaway! Modbox mailbox

As a mid-century modern enthusiast, Greg Kelly was frustrated when he couldn’t find a mailbox that complimented the mid-century aesthetic of his home. In the Fall 2013 issue of Atomic Ranch, a reader asked: “Do you know a good source of 50s period mailboxes? In conclusion, the editor stated “…the retro market seems to be wide open.” This collage shows some of the mailboxes he found, with the Sears 1961 “Diamond Jubilee – Sears 75 Years” catalog image in the upper left.  The mailbox was “Specially chosen for Sears Jubilee…

Read More
Architecture Retro Travel 

Mid Century Time Capsule in the Oklahoma Panhandle

Traveling over the holidays, we made a point to stop at the  Cimarron Heritage Center Museum & Information Center in Boise City, Oklahoma.Why you may ask? The primary draw at the time was that it houses the largest collection of dust bowl memorabilia in the United States. With photographs and even some of the amazing dust (really, you have to touch it, it’s fantastic). What we didn’t expect when we got there was the vast collection of mid-century collectibles and architecture. The 1949 Bruce Goff-designed home serves as a greeting…

Read More
Architecture 

Modernism Week: Man about Modernism Series

Grab a martini, old fashioned or a gin and tonic and settle down for some fabulous modernism viewing. If you’re like us and didn’t make it to Modernism Week in Palm Springs this week, this  YouTube channel is almost as good. Stephen Collins (Property Envy) hosts Man About Modernism with a handsome command of the screen and wealth of expertise in all things design. Collins will be your guide through this expansive and unique mid-century treasure trove. Relish in sophisticated old-Hollywood glamor and experience how the rich and famous play, stay, and sway….

Read More