Posted on May 18th, 2011 No comments
I know several people who regularly attend the open houses of for sale homes. While some of them are always on the look out for the perfect home to move into, generally it’s the ultimate in window shopping combined with HGTV voyeurism. Meaning, it’s a great hobby to have!
What if you’re really into mid-century modern homes? How would you like if 10 of them were all open on one day? It’d be like a parade of atomic age goodness, or in the parlance of 1950s’ newspaper real estate sections, a “Parade of Homes”!
This Sunday, May 22, 2011, from 1 -4 PM that’s exactly what’s happening. Modern StL board member Ginger Fawcett enlisted fellow real estate agents with mid-century modern listings, and they’ve banded together to have them open and free to the public for 3 hours. Lately, when a choice MCM goes on the market in St. Louis it gets snapped up pretty quick, so coordinating 10 properties like this at one time is a rare feat. It is also the first such event in St. Louis. Lots of groundbreaking here!
The 10 homes you can view (and buy, if you’re so inclined) are:
- 2 Sleepy Hollow in Olivette
- 36 Stoneyside Lane in Olivette
- 41 Oak Park Dr. in Creve Coeur
- 8 Graybridge Lane in Ladue
- 1220 Kenmore Dr. in Glendale
- 2409 Saint Giles in Kirkwood
- 1735 Ridgewood in Crestwood
- 1309 Honeywood in Crestwood
- 1901 Wilson in Chesterfield
Look for these signs at the entrance to neighborhoods and in the yards of the for sale homes, and enjoy!
Posted on May 10th, 2011 5 comments
Creve Coeur, MO
May 7, 2011
Modern StL teamed with the residents of Ladue Estates to present an Open House & Tour of their neighborhood. It turned into a gorgeous spring day, and over 75 people came out to tour the inside of 5 open homes and take guided and self-guided tours of the entire subdivision.
“The Kitchen” (as it’s come to be known by anyone whose ever seen photos of the original GE teal blue metal kitchen in #3) was a major draw, to be sure. But the comments from those who toured all 5 homes was about how completely different each home was, and how beautifully it highlighted the eternal allure of the post-war ranch house, a thoroughly American architectural style.
One of my favorite comments was, “$10 is way too cheap for this event. I’ve been to other home tours that charged way more for a lot less. You shoulda charged $20, at least.” (It was $5 for Modern StL members; if you wanna take advantage of this kind of savings in the future, become a member!).
The Ladue Estates trustees – Mario Conte, Lea Ann Baker and Suzanne Walch – knew long ago how special their subdivision was, being untouched by tear downs and McMansions, and that it had a certain magic that made it a real world paradise. With Lea Ann leading the charge, they spent 3 years working on the application that would land Ladue Estates onto the National Register of Historic Places in May 2010. This is the first mid-century modern neighborhood in Missouri to make the list, and one of very few in the United States.
The induction ceremony in October 2010 was a milestone moment that made one hopeful that mid-century modern architecture might be spared the callous and rampant destruction that took out far too many turn-of-the-20th century buildings in St. Louis (and nationwide). Watching the genuine enthusiasm and joy of the tour attendees was a sweet moment, fanning the optimism that there are plenty of us around who “get it,” and that our newest – and last – wave of historic homes will be cared for and loved for decades to come.
A day of appreciation like this is one of the reasons Modern StL formed in the first place, less than a year ago. There are many other worthy MCM StL neighborhoods that deserve an event like this; we’re lucky to have them and hope to feature them in future events.
As for Ladue Estates, I had the pleasure of working with the Trustees on a feature article for an upcoming issue of Atomic Ranch magazine. I’ll be sure to let you know when that’s available. And they are already contemplating throwing another event like this in the future. Imagine these beauties decorated for Christmas….? It’s a thought!
Posted on April 27th, 2011 No comments
Modern StL is teaming with the Trustees of Ladue Estates to present the first ever Open House and Walking Tour of the first-ever Missouri mid-century modern neighborhood on the National Register of Historic Places!
Saturday, May 7, 2011
10 am – 2 pm
Ladue Estates, Creve Coeur MO 63141
$10 admission – $5 for Modern StL members
5 Homes Open To You
#1, 2, 3, 11 and 14 West Ladue Estates Drive are opening their doors. See an original teal GE metal kitchen. See how excited we are to be able to share these 5 gorgeous homes with you!
Guided Walking Tour
At 11am, noon and 1 pm, two Ladue Estates residents (Lea Ann Baker – who did the Historic Registry application – and architect David Connally) give a guided tour of the homes on West Ladue Estates Drive.
Self-Guided Walking Tour
The other 2 streets that make up this historic neighborhood are open for you to swoon through. With a paid fee, you will receive a brochure with neighborhood highlights.
This is a thriving, private neighborhood, so please respect their homes and park only on the East Sides of the 2 streets shown on the map above.
The tour begins at #2 West Ladue Estates (shown as X on the map above), which is also one of 5 homes open to you. Pay the fee here and begin your journey into an atomic-age wonderland! $10 fee the day of the event – $5 for Modern StL members. Rain or shine.
Posted on February 7th, 2011 1 comment
Neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet or hail shall keep the postmen from their appointed rounds, but it sure did mess with Tropicanniversary!
Snow and ice canceled our first date, and having to accommodate league bowlers who also got snowed out messed up the second date, so we’ve moved everything to a (hopefully) less snow-filled mid-March. March 15th to be exact.
Like our streets, everything remains iced so it stays fresh for you in March. The same great raffle prizes (like retro bowling shirts and kitchen accessories), the same reduced bowling rates (.95 cent shoe rental, for starters) and drink specials await us all. We’ll also announce a special Members-Only house party that takes place at the end of March. So plenty of reasons to sit tight until Mother Nature gets it right.
Official Modern StL T-shirts and decals also debut on March 15th. Keep track of the event on Facebook, and we’ll see you soon!
Posted on January 16th, 2011 No comments
On February 2, 2011, from 6 – 9 PM, Modern StL celebrates the 50th anniversary of Tropicana Bowling Lanes. For us, the owner is reserving half the lanes at reduced prices. There will be amazing raffle items, a history of bowling slideshow and drink specials. You also have the chance to buy our first official swag:
Here’s the Facebook invite. We hope to see you there!
Posted on November 11th, 2010 No comments
If you love Mid-Century Modern architecture in general, and St. Louis’ stash of MCM specifically, then set your sites on this coming week. You have 2 opportunities to be with others like you.
Modern StL makes it social debut on Thursday, November 18th, from 5 – 8 PM at Atomic Cowboy. Our group has put together 25 atomic-minded gift bags which will go the first 25 people who join up. There will be a raffle for two Geneva Jelly Watches. Meet the people who want you to be a part of celebrating St. Louis MCM (that would be the Board Members), and mix and mingle with other folks who absolutely have the best taste in design and architecture because they came out to support Modern StL.
I am very honored to be invited by the Landmarks Association to be the closing act of their Mid-Century Modern Master Series. On Sunday, November 21st at 3 PM at Landmarks, I present St. Loves MCM: Embracing Recent Past Preservation. This venerable organization describes it best on their website:
From Mad Men to Design Within Reach, it seems as if America is embracing mid-century modern (MCM) with a passion. With the Arch as out global calling card, it’s time for St. louis to embrace and protect its MCM heritage. Join Toby Weiss as she showcases some of St. Louis’ best MCM buildings and looks at ways to ensure their preservation.
The lecture will begin at 3:00 PM in the classroom at Architecture St. Louis at 911 Washington Avenue, Suite 170. Seating is limited to 50 people. We strongly encourage reservations as we cannot guarantee seating without one. To reserve a seat, please call 314.421.6474 or email: email@example.com.
It is always a great pleasure to hear from and meet B.E.L.T. readers because we all have so much in common. Now in November, we have two chances to “Gabba gabba, we accept you, one of us!” I hope you can make it to one or (preferably!) both events.
Posted on September 3rd, 2010 1 comment
The Arch is the global icon of modernism, and it is the front door of St. Louis. We have a glorious collection of mid-century modern buildings and neighborhoods, and we’re overdue in celebrating and protecting these assets.
This is why we have formed a new non-profit group – Modern StL. We strive for the identification, education, preservation and celebration of St. Louis Modernism. We have plans for many different types of events (how would you like a walking tour of Ridgewood with some words by its architect Ralph Fournier?) and seminars, and swag, and on-line forums and… the possibilities are endless.
The group met for the first time in June, and we’ve only recently incorporated with the state of Missouri. So we have a lot of work ahead of us to make everything official – including levels of membership and our first major event – but in the mean time, we invite you to explore our website in progress: