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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Sometimes I hate design shows like Fixer-Upper

Like all of us, I sometimes give in to the temptation of watching HGTV for kicks and caught an episode of a new show called Fixer-Upper.  It's good fun most of the time - except when the fixers have no concept about cool architecture.  For this post about fixing up an unsellable house, I feel like they went overboard on denegrading the old style, which was actually cool.  They found old photos of the house in its prime, minus the people.  They don't show all of the cool features of the house, but they do show some of them like the old fashioned wet bar, atrium, and loft.  Some of the stick with these midcentury houses was bringing the outdoors in.  And though the house was built in 1973, it seems much more like a late 1960s house.  You don't get to see the entry courtyard, but it is covered by a roof which has a hole for a tree to grow through.  Let's just say, if the house were in California, it would have had no problem selling at all.  It also looks like they updated a few things in the 1980s.  Also, let' just say that what the did to "update" the house is going to be just as dated in a few short years thanks to changing tastes and styles.  I'm still upset about the atrium being walled in.  And that they got rid of the multistory fireplace.  I wish this house had been on the market where we were looking.  We would have restored it.

Here's the comment I left on the page.

They got rid of some of the coolest features of an awesome midcentury party house.  Sure the bathrooms needed to be updated, but what they called a "second sink" was actually a wet bar.  Remember those?  The atrium was cool and could have been replanted.  There was nothing "scary" about it.  It provided light to the whole house so that it's bright and cheery.  Plus those huge picture windows are totally covered up by the shutters.  They're nice and they keep the house warmer/cooler, but one of the main selling points of this house is the view.  And that loft they got rid of was highly desirable back in the day.  I mean, sure, change the stairs so someone can hang onto a rail.  But drunk uncle?  Come on!  This was once someone's dream home.  It was well built and actually quite cool for back in that day.  I just think it would be a good idea to understand what the original architects were trying to convey before you just tear it up as if it's all some horrific idea.  I would have considered that house a real find and invited people over for parties.

You can still watch it in 2014, so you can see what I'm talking about.

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