Newton, N.C., Margaret Moose
Once you come to love a bungalow, it’s hard to imagine living in anything else. Our beautiful, eclectic Craftsman, purchased from the original family two years ago and now being restored (see bungalowreborn.blogspot.com), was designed by Charles C. Hook and built in 1912–13 for local mill owners. Known as the Worth-Knox house, she boasts five bedrooms and a sleeping porch. The inglenook is the centerpiece of the entry/living hall. Large columns flank the entry to the music room, and French doors divide the music room, solarium and dining room from the living hall. All floors, woodwork, light fixtures, tubs, doors and windows are original, as are the six wood-burning tile fireplaces and the radiant dish warmer in the butler’s pantry.
Kansas City, Kan., John Eyler, AIA
When I purchased my 1912 bungalow in Kansas City’s Brookside neighborhood, it was in such poor condition that the agent declared it had no value! But I was really taken by the potential I saw there, with its 30 windows, small plan and quiet street. From the top down, I put on a new roof and fascia, all new electrical and plumbing, refinished the floors and restored the natural quartersawn oak woodwork (which had been painted white). I kept the paint scheme simple and planted 12 new trees. This is the last house for me.
Billings, Mont., Kathy Grubbs
We bought a nondescript 1949 house with the intention of transforming it into one with the kind of Arts and Crafts flair we have always loved. My husband began by designing and building a detached garage with an Arts and Crafts guest apartment upstairs (seen behind the small garage), where many visitors express pleasure in the cozy comfort of the surroundings. (The detached garage also houses our other pet projects: a 1930 Model A and 1939 Packard.) My husband then built a large welcoming front porch that invites visitors into the house, especially during our cold winters. Neighbors are thrilled with the transformation, and so are we!
South Portland, Maine, Wayne Richards
Within walking distance of the beautiful Maine coastline, this 1927 brick bungalow still has most of its original features, including built-ins, fireplace, hardwood floors, steam heat, and original bathroom fixtures and plumbing—all in perfect working order. I built the stone wall last summer to replace a white concrete retaining wall. I reversed a ’60s kitchen renovation, returning it fairly closely to its original simplicity, including a farmhouse sink. The house is built on ledge/bedrock, and is still as solid and straight as the day it was built. It’s also very close to area beaches, Portland Headlight and a fantastic community.
Forestville, Calif., Nina and Richard Rosen
We moved from L.A. to Sonoma County to live a quieter life. We sought a small one-story house with ample room for chickens and a garden. We found an idyllic two-acre property with a 1940s one-room Russian River getaway cottage that had suffered numerous add-ons. When we first walked in, we almost passed; the house was an obvious teardown. But the quiet, hidden spot, with mature pine trees that keep the house cool all summer, held us there. We’re often envious when we read in American Bungalow how people discover they are living in a real bungalow. We had 1,500 square feet to work with, and the result has made our home, if not a real bungalow, an original one.
San Jose, Calif., Loui Tucker and Sabine Zappe
Our Prairie-style bungalow was built in 1922. Almost all the windows and doors are original, as are the hardwood floors and the lovely glass door knobs. The living room and dining room have wonderful egg-and-dart ceiling molding which always causes visitors to ooh and aah. We have done a lot of back-dating and un-remuddling to restore built-ins and other woodwork that had been removed and have installed period-appropriate hanging lights to replace the cans in the kitchen ceiling. A Web site devoted to our home is at louitucker.com/racestreethome.htm.
Westport, Conn., Dan Kahn and Betsy Phillips
We have both designed and built houses, but converting a dated Dutch-colonial summer cottage into an 1,800-square-foot Arts and Crafts bungalow in the historic Compo-Owenoke beach community on Long Island Sound was our first project as a couple. Much of the wood came from a 150-year-old cotton mill we stumbled on as it was being torn down. When it came time to trim out the exterior, Dan gave each carpenter a Greene & Greene book and copies of American Bungalow and This Old House and asked them to take their time and be proud of what they created. They loved it. So do we.
Northwest Conn., Erin Mills
When we acquired this cottage a few years ago, it had been used infrequently since it was built in the ’30s and was being consumed by the woods and taken over by critters. Doing all of the work ourselves, we spent two years making it habitable, and it is now our full-time residence. We enjoy both indoor and outdoor fireplaces and a stone screened porch. The stone section interior has recycled chestnut timbers taken from local barns. We are building and decorating in a mix of Craftsman and Adirondack styles and like to think of it as our bungalow cottage.