’Tis the season for Holiday Home Tour at Historic Alexander Mansion

Feel festive this week at the seventh annual Dallas Woman’s Forum Holiday Home Tour at the historic C. H. Alexander Mansion, just blocks from the Dallas Arts District. The tour is part of a month of fun at the mansion, called “One Enchanted Christmas,” which will continue later in the month with a European Tea Room.

Photo courtesy C. H. Alexander Mansion

Photo courtesy C. H. Alexander Mansion

The Holiday Home Tour, Dec. 4-7, will take visitors through the spectacular rooms of the first floor of the mansion, cheerfully decorated for Christmas. Upstairs, guests can shop among 20 merchants in a gift boutique, offering antiques, jewelry, handcrafted home decor, candles, chocolates, teas, jellies, stationery, and vintage clothing. There are also tasty treats to buy at the Bake Shoppe, and tickets are available in advance for lunch at a Holiday Bistro.

“One Enchanted Christmas” will continue with a European Tea Room in the mansion Dec. 11-14 and 17-20 at noon each day. A traditional three-course tea will begin with passed champagne and will include the Alexander Mansion private blend tea, Caramel Almond Bliss. Reservations are required. (more…)

4826 Swiss Front

Just southwest of the storied homes on Swiss Avenue lies a more intimate, less popular Swiss Avenue in the gorgeous Gaston Heights neighborhood. Bounded by North Fitzhugh Ave. on the northeast and Peak on the southwest, sandwiched between Live Oak and Worth Street, is a lovely little enclave of historic homes that enjoys a distinction as Peak’s Suburban Addition.

This is a fantastic neighborhood for people who want an urban environment where you can see downtown from Gaston Avenue, and yet you can enjoy a quiet, walkable neighborhood close to shopping and mass transit. And there’s Jimmy’s Food Store just down Fitzhugh if you’re craving a Cuban sandwich. Man, that makes me hungry!

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Tuesday Two Hundred: Adorable 2/1 in Vickery Park Has Curb Appeal Galore

5226 Richard Front

How I love this home! Seriously, how could you not love this Prairie-style one-story in Vickery Park just from the curb. I bet people hit the brakes when passing 5226 Richard Ave. all the time, just to slow down and admire shutters, bright white porch, and the rich “Stiffkey Blue” exterior paint on the broad wood siding. This is the only blue Valentine I’d ever want!

5226 Richard Porch

And would you check out that front porch? The scored concrete and the darker blue doors are just perfect. I imagine that this porch would be just amazing with a swing or hanging daybed such as these amazing designs from Low Country Originals.

5226 Richard Living

Inside, it’s cuter than cute, with cozy spaces that belie its 1,500-plus square feet. And with two bedrooms and only one bath, the pool of buyers of this oh-so-adorable home is somewhat limited to singles, downsizing empty-nesters (though the area, which is near Henderson Ave. and Highway 75, is high-traffic and somewhat busy after 9 p.m.), and small families or childless couples. Still, It has me wondering why this adorable property has sat on the market for more than 150 days. Could it be that, even in the trendy and up-and-coming Henderson Avenue area, $294,990 is still a bit high? This home hit the market at more than $319,000, so I suppose time or money will tell.

Still, I love this home and its gracious layout. The fireplace in the living area is so perfect — bright and quaint, I don’t even mind that it’s been painted, although I’m sure that the brick beneath is beautiful, too. The lighting has been upgraded too, with some that echo the 1920s time period and Craftsman design. I love all of the windows and the floor-skimming drapes, which make this petite bungalow feel even bigger.

5226 Richard Dining

The dining room is such a fantastic size — perfect for intimate dinners with friends before enjoying the nearby nightlife. You’ll also love the two-way swinging glass panel doors between the dining room and the breakfast area/butler’s pantry. Such a perfect detail that is often overlooked.

5226 Richard Pantry and Breakfast 5226 Richard Kitchen

The kitchen has been updated with granite counters, stainless steel appliances, and fresh shaker-style cabinets, but this is a room that would have benefited so much more from a professional photographer who could have really emphasized the space, and shown how versatile it is. You have to have a good eye for how a photo relates a space, and considering how the kitchen and breakfast area are closed off from the rest of the home, it’s hard to understand the size and capacity of the kitchen.

5226 Richard Master 5226 Richard bath

The rest of the home is just adorable. The “master” bedroom is so pretty with plenty of windows and gorgeous paint that is so perfect for this home and these gorgeous floors. The bathroom is quaint, with a pedestal sink and a shower/tub, with cute tile and border on the floor. It’s small, but considering it’s the only bathroom in the home, it does well to not cram in a huge vanity or use up every single inch with a separate tub and shower.

The backyard sports a fantastic little deck for enjoying a mild spring or autumn night with friends. Too bad we don’t see the rest of the lot. Still, I love this home and I hope it finds the perfect buyer soon!

5226 Richard Back Deck

Winnetka Heights To Get Decked Out For This Weekend’s Holiday Home Tour

Willomet

(Photo: Winnetka Heights Neighborhood Association)

Winnetka Heights is a fabulous community that takes pride in the fact that it’s the oldest designated historic district in Oak Cliff, designated in 1981 and comprised of an amazing array of Prairie four-squares and Craftsman bungalows built in the early 1900s. Each year they put on a whimsical and fun home tour that really lights up the area.

This year they’re going a step further and hoping to bring some cheer to even more houses by photographing the front doors of wreath-bedecked homes in the neighborhood during the Dec. 7 home tour. The photographs will be made into a coffee table book that will be available for sale later. If you live in Winnetka Heights and want a stylish evergreen wreath of your own, find out how you can get a locally made one from Troy Lonion here.

If you want to see inside some of the amazing homes on this year’s tour, you can buy tickets for $12 each at Bishop Street Market inside the Bishop Arts District. Tickets are $15 on the day of the tour, and can be purchased at Turner House at the start of the tour. Turner House will also host a silent auction from noon to 6 p.m. during the tour, featuring items from Oak Cliff businesses and artists. Find out more about Turner House here.

Winnetka Heights To Get Decked Out For This Weekend's Holiday Home Tour

Willomet

(Photo: Winnetka Heights Neighborhood Association)

Winnetka Heights is a fabulous community that takes pride in the fact that it’s the oldest designated historic district in Oak Cliff, designated in 1981 and comprised of an amazing array of Prairie four-squares and Craftsman bungalows built in the early 1900s. Each year they put on a whimsical and fun home tour that really lights up the area.

This year they’re going a step further and hoping to bring some cheer to even more houses by photographing the front doors of wreath-bedecked homes in the neighborhood during the Dec. 7 home tour. The photographs will be made into a coffee table book that will be available for sale later. If you live in Winnetka Heights and want a stylish evergreen wreath of your own, find out how you can get a locally made one from Troy Lonion here.

If you want to see inside some of the amazing homes on this year’s tour, you can buy tickets for $12 each at Bishop Street Market inside the Bishop Arts District. Tickets are $15 on the day of the tour, and can be purchased at Turner House at the start of the tour. Turner House will also host a silent auction from noon to 6 p.m. during the tour, featuring items from Oak Cliff businesses and artists. Find out more about Turner House here.

618 N. Brookside Home of the Week

I have driven down this street, Brookside, off LaVista, so many times on my way to Hollywood Heights/Santa Monica where my daughter now lives. Every time I marvel at how pretty Brookside is, and how the homes on one side all back up to the Lakewood Country Club. What a perfect place to live — walking distance to Lakewood Shopping Center, Whole Foods, and of course a whole country club golf course in your back-yard.

Then, eureka, a month ago, I see this gorgeous, neat as a pin and spiffy Tudor revival that has a for sale sign in front on the country club side! It is listed by John and Debbie Brosius, Allie Beth Allman & Associates, Debbie being John’s wife, and John being the super star agent who brought a buyer to my home years ago. Then I look this house up and — quick someone hide my checkbook!

618 Brookside is now under one million dollars!

618 N. Brookside Entry 618 N. Brookside Living618 N. Brookside Dining 618 N. Brookside Kitchen 618 Brookside KIT3618 N. Brookside DenBuilt in 1928,  the 3486 square foot home is perched on a bit of a hill, not a climb, enough to poise it majestically. Landscaping is luscious and mature on a third-acre lot(.38) and the home has been beautifully updated inside with classical touches: the walls and ceilings are still thickly textured plaster, and yes, those are original stained glass windows. There are beautiful moldings, arched windows, nooks, crannies, hardwoods, leaded glass doors, slate floors, an original  Potter Ironworks stair rail, and a rookwood pottery fireplace. You get four bedrooms, three and a half baths, formals, , secluded master with sitting room, spa bath with bidet, sunroom, an outdoor pergola with a beautiful grill built into a round, stone island structure, a roman swimming pool and detached garage with 600 square feet of guest quarters over.

618 N. Brookside Master 618 N. Brookside Master Bath 618 N. Brookside PoolhousePlease note that subtracting the guest quarters square footage leaves the home at 2886 square feet — essentially  a three bedroom, two and a half bath house with a rear guest quarters. But really, who needs more?

John and Debbie have it listed for $985,000. Was listed a year ago for $975,000, you know, different market. Then it went back on July 5 at $1,025,000. I’d say we are getting closer to perfection… and my checkbook…  and a loan from Inwood Mortgage right now!618 Brookside grill 618 Brookside guest house618 N. Brookside Backyard 618 N. Brookside Patio

723 Parkmont Front

This is a rarity for Hollywood Heights, folks. This 1916 Craftsman bungalow at 723 Parkmont Street has loads of character and charm, and is more than 2,000 square feet! Most of the homes in this area are just tiny, with two bedrooms and one bath, and even some have only a one-car garage! This one, though, is so unique and is perfect for a free spirit looking for a home that feels lived in without needing a ton of work.

723 Parkmont Living

With three bedrooms and two baths, this beautiful home features artisan tile mosaic floors and backsplashes, heart-of-pine floors, and tons of original cabinetry. The “airplane” Craftsman style is heavily influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright, featuring exposed beams and geometric designs in the windows and cabinetry. With a total 2,526 square feet, this house is generously sized, too, and priced accordingly at $389,600.

723 Parkmont Dining

Still, the rooms are a bit small, so perhaps the current owner’s oversized furniture will make the house seem a little cozier than it actually is. There are two separate living spaces, a study, and a breakfast area. Just tons and tons of room for all of your antiques and collectibles. The dining room features a huge sideboard for serving holiday meals, and a glass mullioned cabinet for showing off your china collection.

723 Parkmont Kitchen

The kitchen is in great condition and only needs a few updates here and there. I would keep the cabinetry intact and replace the counters and the appliances. From there, it’s really good to go. I love the butler’s pantry off to the side in the kitchen — a feature echoed in the dining room’s hutch. If you love to preserve and can, this is a great area to show off your lovely jars of nibbles!

723 Parkmont Master

The home’s current occupant is using one of the bedrooms as a massage studio, but there is a study and two additional bedrooms, too. All of the bedrooms are 14×13, not exceptionally large, but not tiny, either. I do love the master bath, though, which features a walk-in shower and garden tub. The tub is surrounded by the same colorful mosaic tile you will find in the breakfast area and kitchen floor.

723 Parkmont Master Bath

The backyard is an absolute gem, and has a koi pond and mounds of flowers and herbs separated by stone paths. It’s a picture out of a young girl’s dream — an English garden-type landscape in which you can hide away from the day’s responsibilities. A place that feels magical as the summer’s swarm of fireflies take to the air.

723 Parkmont Backyard

What do you think of this home? Magical, or is it too personal for the market?

Lakewood is home to so many great homes by incredible architects. Street after street, block after block, you’ll see gorgeous historic houses with outstanding details. If you manage to find a home for sale designed by one of these architects and has a view of the lake, well, that’s a great stroke of luck.

Today’s Friday Five Hundred has both. The house, 7327 Lakewood Blvd., was designed by Clifford Hutsell and has a great view of White Rock Lake from the second-story balcony. There are three bedrooms, two baths, and more than enough outdoor space. It’s marketed by Scott Carlson and priced at $595,000.

Coming in at 1,848 square feet, this is the kind of home that I would usually say speaks for itself in photographs. That’s why I was a little disappointed by this listing, which has poorly lit photos from weird angles. It almost looks like they were taken with an iPhone as an afterthought.

It’s a shame, really, because this beauty has been largely remodeled but with many of the hand-scraped plaster walls left intact. There are beautiful stained-glass windows and gorgeous ironwork throughout the home. The backyard has an amazing covered patio, and would be great for entertaining.

This well-preserved beauty has access to the incredible schools that Lakewood has to offer, including Woodrow Wilson High School.

Still, though, I can’t fight that nagging feeling that this home is so much more amazing in person. What do you think? Do photos make or break a listing?