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Boise Mid-Century Modern Homes - History and Upkeep

Posted by Mike Brown Group on Thursday, December 6th, 2018 at 1:20pm.

Preserving a mid-century modern home can be both financially and aesthetically rewarding. These homes are in high demand in the Treasure Valley as their uniqueness and livability coincides with amazing and sought-after living spaces. The Idaho Statesman estimates that there are 11,000 mid-century homes in Boise, and even more in the greater Treasure Valley. 

Many Boise mid-century homes are at or over 50 years old, yet it is up to the homeowner to care and maintain the integrity of their mid-century home as it's an arduous process to be listed in the National Register of Historical Places. Modernism sprang from the convergence of new industrial materials and a new philosophy of building where form follows function. Architect Louis Sullivan (1856-1924) is considered the first Modernist architect and Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959) is arguably the most famous U.S. Modernist architect. Art Troutner (1921-2001), an Idaho native and Boise resident and architect, is credited as being the single most important figure in the history of wood technology with his engineered wood inventions (later known as Truss Joist International Corp.) along with notoriety within the mid-century architecture field. 

In the late 1950’s and 1960’s, many Boise residents lived outside the city limits. During this era cropped up neighborhoods now known as distinctly modern, including the Highlands, Winstead Park, Sunset Rim, Randolph-Robertson, Boise Heights, Glen Haven, Country Club Manor, and Rim Crest. These homes supported leisure coupled with efficiency, as many Americans were now experiencing an unprecedented amount of economic success and free time. Open concept and rooms flowing to and from each other, along with roomy family rooms overlooking backyards and modern conveniences characterized homes built in these areas. 

Boise mid-century homes showcase materials that are rarely seen today. Oakley stone, local pumice, and basalite, along with period era stone, brick, and tile all are extremely durable and have maintained their integrity throughout the years. Within the interior, sputnik chandeliers, white globes, wood built-ins, steel cabinets, pastel ceramic tile, and period palette colors conjoin to take residents and visitors back to the mid-century modern era. 

Windows in mid-century homes were often made of metal framing, aluminum, or wood, and can be very prevalent in these homes. To maintain the modern look, yet being able to tap into energy efficiency, homeowners can replace or retrofit these windows with double-paned glass with a period-appropriate material. Homeowners are also encouraged to keep their original modern doors, but if improbable there are local craftsman within the Treasure Valley that are doing a great job of replicating the modern door.  

When trying to add character to your mid-century home, sourcing vintage items like knobs can easily be found online. Furnishings in these homes were predominantly Scandinavian interlaced with Swedish flair. There are many online resources for tips and tricks to upkeep and decorate your mid-century modern home, including https://www.atomic-ranch.com.

 This Mid-Century home recently sold by the Mike Brown Group was meticulously restored using imported Arne Vodder teak cabinets from Denmark, a 72 sq. ft. fully finished tree house was crafted to match the style of the house, and the home boasted two wood burning fireplaces and a bedroom with a bunk bed and an elevated nook.

 

 

Are you interested in a Boise area mid-century modern home? Our experienced agents are happy to field your questions regarding mid-century communities within the Treasure Valley. Give us a call today! 

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