Bungalow Heaven - Pasadena, California

Hey everyone! This past weekend we went to the Bungalow Heaven home tour in Pasadena. There were eight homes featured on the tour and each one was unique and special in it's own right. In the past we'd just driven through Bungalow Heaven but walking around gave us a greater appreciation for the area and the architecture. We have always been interest in what they look like on the inside and we finally got our chance!

After seeing the houses it's amazing how devoted people are to restoring their homes back to the original design. It's almost feels like there might be some friendly competition between the members of the community to see who can make their house look more authentic. Some homes really felt as though you stepped back in time and we transported back to the early 1900's. 

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The biggest challenge we saw in the craftsman style bungalows was the lighting. The levels were really low, both natural and artificial. A typical craftsman bungalow will have a full width porch, which we love, but the overhang prohibits natural lights from penetrating the front interior rooms. We image it's a challenge to try and stay authentic and increase the lighting but we felt a little would go a long way. Increasing the lighting doesn't mean recessed can lights everywhere. That would not be appropriate for these style of homes. One creative and subtle way could be to add some recessed art lights or wall mounted picture lights. As designers we are taught that lighting is the most important aspect to any room and it truly is. Rooms transform when you add layers of lighting; task, ambient, general and spot. Really pay attention to the lighting when you walk into a room that "feels good." It's not something people really see so much as feel. Hmmm... that sounds like a good topic for a blog post. 

Even with the minor critique of lighting, we thoroughly enjoyed the tour! We look forward to attending in the coming years. The neighborhood is a great piece of architectural history and one of the most charming areas in Pasadena. The proceeds of the tour this year go towards grants that will allow homeowners to remove the unfortunate 1970's stucco that covered up the original wood shake exterior facades and bring them back to their formal glory.

As a side  note, just to put into perspective how the crazy the housing market is; one of the docents bought their house in Bungalow Heaven for $80k in the late 80's and it is now worth $800k. Crazy right!?!? Another side note, we were not able to take photos of the interiors so the photos in this post were just houses we loved in the neighborhood. None of them were actually on the tour.... we'll do better next year! #lazysunday

We are excited to see the houses next year and hope to see our readers there as well!

B+P