The Neighborhood Architecture

We still had lots of snow on April 1, and the storm was coming, but Suki and I went for a walk.

This house is a few blocks away, up a very steep hill that always makes my legs ache a little by the time I reach the top. I love the witch’s hat. That’s the conical room on the right. I wonder which one of the kids yelled dibs on that one when they moved in? This house also reminds me a little of the one in Psycho; I think it’s the angle. The property is high, way above the street on this side.No. 23 4.1.14 smOn the other side, the roof reveals a window that looks like a sleepy eye. Do you see that too?Window Eye 4.1.14 sm

On the next block, I noticed the paper wasp in the cornice. Wonder if they know it’s there? They should get out there with a broom and can of Raid and get rid of it. Gorgeous wood work though. They definitely don’t add this kind of detail these days.Paper Wasp Nest St Paul 4.1.14 sm


Take a look at the brickwork here. Wow, right? And those windows! I doubt you could replace them with anything similar these days unless you were rich. Absolutely beautiful, and with care, this house will stand a very long time.

Beautiful Brickword 4.1.14 sm

This week, temps are forecast to be <gasp> normal! That means 50s and 60s, and a whopping 70 is predicted for Wednesday. I may very well have to take the scooter out for its 2014 inaugural ride.



About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter, Google +, and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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24 Responses to The Neighborhood Architecture

  1. Patricia says:

    No they don’t make ’em like that any more. Beautiful.

  2. A.M.B. says:

    What beautiful homes! I love the details, particularly the “sleepy eye.” That house must be a bit of a pain in snowy/icy weather, though.

    Enjoy the beautiful weather ahead! My area has been slow to warm up, but we’re supposed to get normal temps by mid-week.

    • I think I’ve seen too many horror movies. That eye creeps me out a little. πŸ™‚ But it’s such an interesting addition to the roof, one has to love it. I mean, who would think to add something like that today?

      This will be our first few days anywhere near normal since last fall. Winter went on far too long this year, and I suspect there might be another surprise or two up Mother Nature’s sleeve before we finally believe it’s over at last.

  3. Allison says:

    I would love to own a home like this, something with that kind of history. I can imagine wandering the rooms and creating stories for the families that built and owned the home before me. Architecture like that brings out a part of me that doesn’t exist otherwise. Of course the reality is much different than the romantic notions I have about the houses but I enjoy dreaming about them anyhow.

    I always wonder about those tiny windows, do they let in enough light to matter? What made the architect add that small detail which doesn’t seem to add much useful benefit but makes the house that much more interesting? Sadly, you don’t see those details in homes anymore.

    I hope you get to enjoy the 70’s on Wednesday! How nice will that be?

    • Allison says:


    • While out on the scooter one evening last summer, I ran into a guy who calls himself The House Detective. He has a web site, you can look him up. He was standing outside a house much like this one, and it was he that told me about the “witch’s hat.”

      Living in and taking care of houses like this require lots of skill or money, and often both. I shudder to think of the heat bills in January.

      • Allison says:

        I will look him up, that sounds like a fun way to waste any number of hours!

        Yes, that is the reason my dreams will likely stay in the dream realm instead of becoming a reality. I don’t have quite that skill level and I don’t want to live solely for my house so I will continue to dream from afar.

  4. Brandilyn says:

    Beautiful shots as always. We don’t have architecture like that around here.

  5. Gorgeous architecture! The roof with the sleepy eye is just incredible.

    • One reason why builders don’t do stuff like this anymore is, I guess, because they don’t know how. Look how beautifully the shingles lay over the top of that window! Amazing.

  6. I love watching that woman on HGTV who restores old houses. The ‘something’ addict.

  7. valjo44 says:

    Strangely enough that’s called an “eyebrow window” πŸ™‚

  8. Yvonne says:

    I love red brick buildings.
    Enjoy Wednesday, we had some sunny days but temps are still only in the high 40s.

  9. Yay!! Scooter ride means more great pics, but love the house with the witches hat. You can keep the wasps though, shudder 😦

  10. I especially like the house one with the “witches hat” – I didn’t know it was called that, what a cool term! When I was a young teenager I used to dream of someday living in a house sort of like that, and my room would be in the top of the tower:-) That window does look like a sleepy eye, & you’re right, it definitely gives me the creeps looking at that, like the house is looking back at me or something! Brrrr!

  11. diannegray says:

    I’ve got cornices like that on the RUC and I just love them. The paper wasp nest is a bit of a worry – we’ve got them too but not on the house (yet). While I was looking through these pics I thought of all the wonderful writing you could do in such an inspirational setting πŸ˜€

    Enjoy the warmth πŸ˜‰

  12. Carole says:

    It’s crazy to think that there are beautiful homes such as these & then very close by you have tenants like the ones you describe. Must be a very eclectic mix.
    What a great place to have for walks. I would be late coming home all the time. Are there restaurants or bars in walking distance too? I think I would love to live in a/the city.
    Beautiful pictures!

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