Saturday, April 19, 2014


Walker & Gillette: American Architects
From Classicism Through Modernism 1900s-1950s
By Edith Crouch
Schiffer Publishing Ltd., $99.99
Reviewed by Teresa Hatfield
Author, Splendid Sass

The work of Walker & Gillette, a leading architectural firm during the twentieth century, is documented in this beautiful book.  Many of the images are unpublished works by the company and by architect Joseph Mordecai Hirschman, whose love of old world buildings influenced their work. The periods covered in the book include Classicism, Art Deco, and Modernism. 

The firm was established  in the early twentieth century and would remain active until the 1950s. Over the years, they created residential country estates, urban mansions, town homes, and apartments. The commercial,  corporate, governmental architecture, Art Deco skyscrapers, and unique commissions are showcased in the book as are the interiors of private yachts, ocean liners, the Playland Amusement Park, and their 1939 New York World’s Fair offering.  

Architects, artists, historians, and readers who love vibrant American history will love the 320 pages of images and text in this beautiful book. Below are just a few of the images showcased in the book.  ENJOY!

Buy here: Walker & Gillette, American Architects: From Classicism Through Modernism (1900s - 1950s)


Victorian Glory in San Francisco and the Bay Area
By Paul Duchscherer and Douglas Keister
 Schiffer Publishing Ltd., $39.99
Reviewed by Teresa Hatfield
Author, Splendid Sass

Growing up, my grandparents lived in a historical Victorian home, so this book was a welcomed addition to my library.  From local residents and visitors, to armchair travelers, all will enjoy this beautiful book with its insightful study of San Francisco and Bay Area history and a thorough survey of its Victorian-era house styles. 

Prominently featured are house museums to visit among the many fine examples of 19th-century homes from the City and its neighboring communities across the Bay. Chronologically arranged chapters represent the Gothic Revival, Italianate, Second Empire, Stick/Eastlake, Queen Anne, and Shingle Victorian styles, as well as the Edwardian era (1901-1914), considered the postscript for the Victorian age. 

With 208 archival images, this publication by Duchscherer is beautifully illustrated throughout with spectacular color photography by Keister. Included is a section called “Before and After” that presents the architectural transformations made by dedicated homeowners, who have renovated Victorian houses, thus contributing to today’s vital historic-preservation movement. More inspiration can be found in the final chapter on “Victorian Revival Interiors,” a spectacular showcase of recent period-style interior-design projects. 

Below are just a few of the images included in this lovely and informative book.  ENJOY!

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