Rochester Steven has completed some drop dead gorgeous updates to his 1957 Alcoa Aluminum house, and shares the details and images. This is the third story on these late-1950s “demonstration” houses. We first featured a time capsule for sale in Wisconsin. I think that’s how Steven found this blog, and we featured his house in New York state, along with the home’s original brochure, just a few weeks later. There were only 23 of these houses built — and Steven, Michael and Bobby are amazing caretakers. This house will knock you off your chair — it’s worthy of Architectural Digest.
Pam, There are three areas that we have addressed in the past several months:
1. Restored the house back to the original color of purple (the front anyway, have to work on the back next spring). It was painted brown some years ago, most likely due to the unsightly fading over the years of the purple that we have seen on a couple other Alcoa houses. We removed one of the aluminum panel pieces from the garage and retrieved the color from the un-weathered side of it.
2. Partially restored the kitchen. When the kitchen was gutted and remodeled years ago the upper metal cabinets were installed in the storage area of the garage. We had them painted the light blue that you see now at an auto shop and reinstalled them. I think that the Auto Body painting worked out great. Especially when it is metal. It was a bit of a pain to cart them all over there!!! Since we only had the original upper cabinets we went with some simple black faced cabinets to complete the lower ones with white Corian for for the counter. We also reconfigured the layout of the kitchen to more reflect the original kitchen in the brochure. The bottom cabinets are made out of wood with black lacquer paint and aluminum pulls… they were purchased at IKEA and are quite inexpensive. The tiles are new tiles with a vintage feel and were purchased locally. We selected the color of both the back splash tiles and the cabinets so that they relate nicely to the multi-colored [“Mondrian”-style] cabinets [shown just below] that face the family room
(The “Mondrian” cabinets are original to the house. I believe that all of the Aloca houses that were built had these unless another option was specified. They are wood with Formica facing.)
3. Family Room/lounge area has been furnished with many great finds from local shops and online. Still somewhat of a work in progress……….
We were able to see another Alcoa house that was located in Pittsburgh this fall when we went down to see Fallingwater. We got out of the car and were looking at it and the owner saw us, greeted us and invited us in for a tour, What a treat!!!!!! It was so interesting to see the subtle differences between our home and his.
Woah. Thank you, Steven. This is fantastic. Understatement. What a marvelous place you have created. And a purple house! Who woulda thunk it. LOVE LOVE LOVE. I am for sure coming to visit next summer. Perhaps you can adopt me.
Readers, to get to more of Steven’s photos, available on his flickr stream, click on any of the photos in this post.