Bixby17 Posted November 12, 2007 Share Posted November 12, 2007 I am so glad I found y'all. It is nice to find kindred spirits who don't think McMansion, faux chateau, and mickey mouse mediteranean are all that.Greetings, my name is Steph and I found y'all through searching around on Houston Mod and checking out the spread in Tribeza.My husband and I own a 1967 single story flat roof house in the Memorial/Voss area. We are the 5th owner of the house since the early 80's, and unfortunately, the house has been subject to a mish mash of remodel. Stuff was done at different times with different tastes and it is kind of a mess.We were told by some of the old timers in this area that it was a specially designed house by an architect. That the original owner had an art collection that they designed the house around. We have no idea who the architect was, nor do we know ways to find that out.When we looked to buy it in 2001, it was almost sold to a builder for scraping. We got it instead. We loved it because we loved the wooded areas, and the trees, and the simplicity of the lines of the house. That and it was on the market for a long time, and a lot of people couldn't get over the flat roof and the paint, and because of those factors keeping it from being sold, it was the only way we could afford living in the area.The wood outside was already painted, and we believe it might be some sort of redwood. Some of the brick inside stayed unpainted, but unfortunately a huge portion of it was painted fushia. The house was on the market a long time because every room of the house was painted some shade of pink, and what wasn't painted pink, had some sort of dipsy doodle pink and blue wallpaper or wallpaper ceiling borders. (Wallpaper ceiling borders are on the top 5 things that frighten me. Certain curtain *treatments* make me shudder too). The house was updated in the 80s, and there is a bunch of gold and marble that was imposed on the kitchen and two of the bathrooms.Fortunately, some elements of the original remain. We have a cool double oven we call the DeLorean because the doors lift up. It keeps great temperature. The bones of the house are really cool and are unusual for some of the houses in the area in that there are few rooms but they are really open, spacious and light. We haven't done much to the house than take out wallpaper and take out the pink. We have to take action soonishly because there is some outside repair work that needs to be done, but also we need to deal with the hodgepodge of flooring and the some of the worst of the 80s redos. It would probably cost too much to return the house to its roots, but at least the worst of the redos could maybe be undone. I want the house to be so cool that if we ever move, someone's first thought isn't just lot value. It has tons of potential.I've talked to exactly one contractor/design company that does a lot of work in the area, and they are the people that made me flee to find a place like this message board. The company said that they had experience with MCM and designing for it. But then the contractor started talking about stuccoing the outside of the house, and stone flooring, and putting all the granite and marble amenties that have (?!) to be in all Memorial homes, and I thought of some of the horrible *updates* I've seen in the area to houses similar to ours. And I got frightened.I have a number of questions that y'all might be able to help with. I've read back through the forum to try to see if anyone has answered these before, but forgive me if I repeated something that I missed. Also apologies if I ask some really dumb questions--I know what I find visually appealing, but know nothing about how to get there.1. Architect. How is the best way to figure out who the architect was? The person who sold us the house was unhelpful in this regard and was basically all "hey it's a great place to live until you tear it down." I am thinking that if I figure out the architect, it might help preserve the house down the road. It might also give us ideas of what it is supposed to look like.2. Flat Roof. Is there anyone out there who loves their flat roof contractor? The one that did the roof previously, a. does messy work; b. is now only doing commercial. We've had someone out, and they say that we need to replace the original metal the covers the separation of the different levels of the roof/chimney. I'm not sure if I trust his quote as the amount is kind of throwupy high for something that is only supposed to last for 10 years. All I know is if we are going to be redoing the interiors, I'd like to trust my roof not to leak on them. We have had only minor issues, but I'd prefer not to be afraid of hard rains. Any advice as it relates to flat roof contractors and maintaining flat roofs?3. Old Appliance Repair. Love my DeLorean oven, but the timer is busted. Anyone know who fixes old appliances? I will cry if the oven itself breaks.4. Kitchen/Bath/Lighting/Flooring Remodel. I think our kitchen was remodelled in 1987, which means it is kinda 80's messed up. But it could be worse. Some stuff is 80s gold and some stuff is silver. Some stuff certainly needs to be updated but with a MCM spirit and not what the typical Memorial granite explosion du jour is. But I have no idea what to do other than what I don't want it to look like. I've seen people here refer to contractors they like who are good with MCM, but I don't know enough of what I want to say what I want done. I'd be fine to work with an architect, but most of the ones we've talked to don't really specialize in MCM and wanted to charge the rate that people charge when money is no object. And some folks said we shouldn't work with an architect because they will draw up some crazy plan that once the contractors get ahold of it would cost what we paid for the house.Basically, we know that no matter what we put into the house, it will probably never be worth more than the lot. So we just want to do sensible things to the home, that make it more livable for our family in a way where we aren't spending so much money on it that we'd be better off moving to a different house.The floors are all some sort of need to be replaced pergo, and I don't think there is anything cool underneath. I have no idea what we should do with our flooring, or the most cost effective ways of de-80fying the house are. I just know what I like, and all the gold doodads aren't it.5. Paint. Oh, and is there any environmentally okay, cost effective or even possible way to undo the painting of outside/inside brick and wood?So in other words....I am confused. And I don't even know who the best resources to help with alleviating my confusion. Architects or other? I'm not sure I even need an architect because really most of the changes we are talking about are materials and style--like flooring, countertops, knobs, switchplates and such--there is so much 80s and a mishmash of inconsistent stuff. Maybe some cabinetry would have to be moved around due to odd built ins (a built in for a microwave that doesn't work any more so it just has an ill-sized microwave jammed in there). I just know I want to save my house and make it the smooth liveable place it should be. I know what I like and don't like when I see it, but I don't know how to translate that into my house. I read a lot of magazines, and I am trying to educate myself with books, but for something as important as your house, I'd like to have some help. Our house is so basic in many respects it doesn't beg for just one way to redo it (other than not in 80s flashback or '07 Memorial Overdone Vulgar Dipsy Doodle). Very plain in the front with walls of windows in the back. Very simple lines and living spaces.And even if you can't help, thanks for letting me share this. Other than my husband, there are few people I know in real life that appreciate MCM homes so it is nice to find a forum like this in Houston. (And yes, I want to join Houston Mod now that I know what it is). Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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