- 2814 Ferndale St. [HAR]
COMMENT OF THE DAY: WHERE ARE THE MODS, WHERE ARE THE MODS, WHERE ARE, WHERE ARE, WHERE ARE THE MODS? “I think this house might survive because of the neighborhood. It’s like the one neighborhood in Houston where they tear down houses in order to build modern replacements. On Colquitt, for example, I only recall one non-modern house… And it was for sale, last I looked.” [Robert Boyd, commenting on Behind Those Pink Walls in Ferndale]
This week we’ve all been fascinated with walled compounds. This 4,119-sq.-ft. one on a 5,000-sq.-ft. lot at the corner of Ferndale and Kipling a couple blocks west of Kirby went on the market just last week. It’s the former home of longtime Houston real-estate agent Robin Elverson, designed in 1976 by Chicago modernist Irving Colburn. From the street, you can’t see much of anything inside. Now’s your chance to get a glance:
Longtime Ferndale resident Carol Barden (yes, that Carol Barden) clues us into the recent appearance on MLS — at $549K apiece — of 2 out of the 3 wood-frame residences that now make up Jas Gurney Antiques. “It’s such a great little street,” she writes. “All the neighbors are so afraid that some awful developer will demo the houses and build junk. Jas has maintained gardens, old-growth trees, he plants flowers for every season.” Gurney reportedly would prefer to sell his entire inventory of “museum-quality” antiques along with his houses, but hasn’t been able to find a buyer. Also on that mixed-residential stretch of Ferndale, between Westheimer and Alabama: townhouses, plain ol’ houses, 4 more antique stores, Jill Brown’s lighting store, plus several more businesses.
A couple of readers have expressed — how best to put this? — concern for the financial well-being of the developers behind the Bammel Park Homes featured on Swamplot early last year. Writes one recent visitor to the complex:
The development was originally intended to have 12 homes. There are only three complete and it doesn’t look as if any more will be built. . . . The front gate is rusted, the driveways haven’t been paved, the fountain is clogged, there isn’t any landscaping and loose wires are hanging here and there.
Didn’t Black Diamond Development claim the park-like setting would in fact be “enchanted”? Meanwhile, the asking prices for the hefty properties at 3204, 3244, and 3248 Bammel Ln. have been cut in three hacks each from $2.239 million to $1.798 million. Just look at all the bricks that includes:
Just around the corner from all those Colquitt galleries behind Kirby, the art traffic gets a little heavy:
Over the weekend, Dimitri and I were driving home on Ferndale as we passed by two guys walking across the street with a very familiar piece of art. I said “Wait a minute, back up- I know this work!” So Dimitri backed up for me to ask “Hey is that a “Floyd Newsum?” They happily confirmed yes- this was sure enough a Floyd Newsum piece of art. It was such a coincidence because I have been working on some promotional photos/collages of Floyd and there he is again right in front of me on my very own street.
Photo: Sarah Lipscomb
Speaking of abandoned residential projects, another reader wants to know if this development qualifies:
I have noticed the Bammel Lane Park Homes project appears to have ceased development. The houses are between Bammel Lane and Eastside. There are 3 or 4 very large homes that looked completed. ( I cannot figure out if they are occupado) Then, they were painted stark white? Not so good. The sign advertising the project is still up but it appears they are at a stand still. Can you ask the readers or let me know if you have any scoop?
“Brown finds itself at the epicenter of two major design styles that [have] swept the country,” declares Cote de Texas’s Joni Webb. And those would be? “The Belgian and Industrial looks.”
In Houston at least, Jill Brown appears to have cornered the market on large lantern-style lighting fixtures and European instructional charts. On separate recent visits to her last-name-only shop on the corner of Ferndale and W. Alabama, Webb and fellow design blogger Paloma Contreras documented the finds: