Sunday, December 6, 2009

california housing myth: busted

before moving to california this summer, I had a distaste for california homes. in my limited experience I imagined them all to look like either some sweeping grotesque OC style mansion or like a box of concrete built in 1984. I told my husband that I would never want to buy a home here, unless we could build our own and model it after a new england style. after having lived in berkeley for nearly 6 months, I see that I was very wrong. (granted, if I lived in LA, I might feel different). I have come to find that while homes are obviously much newer than a new england home, many are unique (there is no one clear style that I can see), cozy, surrounded by beautiful landscape and defy what I think some might consider a "california home". my husband and I took our dog, venkman, on a walk today to prove it.

brown shingles are my favorite:

some are classically (or stereotypically, for myself) california - meaning bright colors and crazy/ugly ornate design:

but others so beautifully combine a variety of architectural styles with a simple and soothing grace:

what I love best about california, or at least berkeley, is that all of these homes are right next to each other. I grew up in the suburbs of chicago where every other house was a replica of the one before - ahhh, the subdivision. here, there is character, personality and the gift of westward expansion and thus with a late start, ability to copy the greeks, the romans, the puritans or the frank lloyd wrights to create a completely heterogeneous community. and these are examples from just one neighborhood!

images: me. to view more from our walk, go to my flickr page.

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