Archive

Posts Tagged ‘the tiny house’

The Sunlight in Springfield!

January 31st, 2013 Sears Homes 1 comment

In today’s real estate market, a house with a mere 768 square foot would be considered pretty small, but in the 1920s, it proved to be a very popular size.  The Sears Sunlight had two diminutive bedrooms (12-feet by 10-feet) and a bathroom that was a mere 6-feet square.

An “expandable attic” was its saving grace.  There was a little bit of room on the second floor to add an extra bedroom or two (for short people).

The Sunlight is a hard house to identify because it’s small and - frankly - it looks like every other tiny bungalow that was built in the early 1900s.

I’ve never identified one on my own, but Cindy Catanzara and Rebecca Hunter seem to be old pros at finding these little houses!

One distinctive feature is the small clipped gable on the front and rear, and the hipped roof on the front porch, which juts out a bit beyond than the primary exterior walls. Another visual clue is the small enclosed space on the rear, but that often disappears after some remodeling.

Many thanks to Cindy Catanzaro for supplying so many wonderful photos of Sunlights in Springfield, Ohio!

1928 House house

The Sunlight, as seen in the 1928 catalog.

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Look at the size of those bedrooms!

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The Sunlight (1928).

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When I was in Elgin, Illinois in February 2010, Rebecca Hunter drove me out to this house and said, "Are you ready to see the most perfect Sunlight in the world?" It is in pristine condition and has been painstakingly restored. The homeowners have the original blueprints.

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Another view of the perfect Sunlight in Elgin, IL.

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Crystal Lake

Rebecca then drove me out to this Sunlight in Crystal Lake, Illinois. It's also in very good condition.

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Springfield Cindy

Cindy Catanzaro found this Sunlight in Springfield, Ohio. It's had some alterations, but is still identifiable as a Sunlight. Photo is copyright 2012 Cindy Catanzaro and may not be used or reproduced without written permission.

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Springfield Cindy

Another view of the Sunlight in Springfield. Photo is copyright 2012 Cindy Catanzaro and may not be used or reproduced without written permission.

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This is an older picture showing a pretty little Sunlight that was feeling forlorn and forgotten. I'm happy to report that this home is now in the hands of a happy family who truly values the home's unique, historical origins. Photo is copyright 2012 Cindy Catanzaro and may not be used or reproduced without written permission.

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Same house as shown above, this Sunlight is already starting to feel loved and cared for, thanks to its new owners! Photo is copyright 2012 Cindy Catanzaro and may not be used or reproduced without written permission.

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And you might notice that this Sunlight has had an addition put on the back. As originally built, it had a mere 768 square feet. Photo is copyright 2012 Cindy Catanzaro and may not be used or reproduced without written permission.

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Why did the bungalow become so popular so fast? Click here to read a fascinating bit of history.

To see more pictures of Sears Homes in Ohio, click here.

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“The Little House,” by David.

February 18th, 2012 Sears Homes 1 comment

I’m mighty happy to be in my new home, but one of the things I miss from the old place is my little 96-square-foot house.

David Strickland designed it and built it in September 2008, and it is a real beauty. It has more than 250 linear feet of crown molding, a floored attic (with a vertical staircase), and five wonderful windows. And it has 96 square feet of living area. And did I mention that it has a slate roof?

If you want a little house of your own, or if you need any type of contracting work, I highly recommend David. He is easily the finest contractor that I’ve ever worked with. In addition to his 30 years of experience, he’s incredibly talented. He’s more than just an experienced carpenter, he’s a true artisan, in every sense of the word.

If you’d like to see samples of his work, scroll on down. He’s done so much work for us, and I’ve never met another contractor who comes close to this level of quality.

We always called it, The Little Mansion. This is a real beauty and its a lovely testament to Davids abilities.

We always called it, The Little Mansion. This is a real beauty and it's a lovely testament to David's abilities.

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Davids little house.

This custom-built jewel has more than 250 feet of crown molding and a slate roof. And it was designed and built by David Strickland.

David also restored the bathroom for us. The work he did was first rate, and the end result was magazine-quality gorgeous!

David also restored the bathroom for us. The work he did was first rate, and the end result was magazine-quality gorgeous!

And David built the picket fence, too.

And David built the picket fence, too.

Another view of the picket fence that David built for us.

Another view of the picket fence that David built for us.

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David Strickland, the most talented Master Carpenter I ever met.

David Strickland, the most talented Master Carpenter I ever met.

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Pink Houses, Great and Small

April 6th, 2011 Sears Homes 2 comments

The fact is, I’m just biding my time in the 21st Century until the smart people figure out how to travel through time. Once that happens, I’ll get back to the 1920s, where I belong. Until then, I’ll just have to pretend that’s where I live.

My current home is a 1925 Colonial Revival in Colonial Place, Norfolk (Virginia). It’s a grand old house, but the repairs have been substantial. In the last four years, we’ve spent more than $40,000 doing repairs and improvements.

One of the “improvements” was the little house we had built in the back yard.  “La Petite Manse” is the creation of artisan and master craftsman David Strickland. He and I worked together to design the little house, and David built it. It’s designed to mirror the look of the 1925 Colonial, and I’m tickled pink with the work David did.

I love my little house. Sometimes, I just sit in the back yard and admire the little house. It makes me happy.

Little house

For my 50th birthday, my husband bought me a brass plaque that reads, "3916-1/2." The little house likes having its own address.

Another view of the happy little house. It has a second floor, with a built-in ladder.

Another view of the happy little house. It has a floored attic, accessed with a built-in ladder.

The big house likes sharing its 1/4-acre lot with the little house.

The big house likes sharing its 1/4-acre lot with the little house.

Pergola

Mr. Hubby spent a year full of weekends building me this beautiful pergola. It's now one of our favorite spots in the spring and summer.

To read about the kit homes in Colonial Place, click here.

To buy Rose’s book, click here.

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