I went on the Wright Plus Housewalk here, in Oak Park, over the weekend. There were nine private residences on the walk, all built between 1885 and 1925, with three homes by Frank Lloyd Wright.
The tour also includes admission to the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio, and Unity Temple. I just toured the home and studio recently, and I’ve been in Unity Temple before (our rehearsal dinner was held there!), so I skipped those on the day of the Housewalk. Plus the ticket for the public spaces is good through the end of 2013, and also includes the Robie House and The Rookery.
Interior photography was not allowed, so the only photo I can share is the one from the Cessna house (below), which was on the Housewalk’s site. There was so much woodwork in the homes — lots of rift and quarter sawn oak.
Next year, to mark the 40th annual Housewalk, the homes will be “All Wright.” Tourists visit Oak Park from around the world, and I imagine that the chance to tour eight private Frank Lloyd Wright homes will be a big lure.
My favorite home on the tour was the Flori Blondeel House II, built in 1914, by John Van Bergen. An addition in 2005 doubled the home’s footprint and modernized it, while still keeping the original style of the house intact.
All of the homes on the Housewalk were amazing, and it was interesting to note how many of them had undergone significant remodeling or restoration. Brandon and I are happy with our home after six years of working on it, but I also feel the pull to find a new house that we can fix up. (The dollhouse doesn’t count, of course.)
Brandon grew up in the Frank Lloyd Wright Historic District of Oak Park, and after walking around the area all day, I was charmed. We like our side of town, but if we can find an affordable house in the historic district that will work for our family, we’ll go for it. The smaller/outdated homes do pop up occasionally. We’re not in a hurry to move, but I suppose we ought to start preparing our house so that we’ll be ready when the right house hits the market.