Look who we ran into at house #3 – Robin Callan, design guru at Room Fu Knockout Interiors!! I was super excited when I spotted her last year and glad we got to chat it up again on this tour. I’m a big fan of her work and her wit, I recommend checking out her website and blog.
I have anxiously awaited The Modern Home Tour each year for the past three years and each time I get more from it. The first year I was just beginning to train my eyes towards architecture and design so I didn’t really do much but decide on a very basic level what I liked and didn’t like. But now, I’m in it and on a mission. I critiqued each house, not as an authority (of which I certainly am not), but as a budding designer sculpting my own sensibilities about how we create the spaces we occupy.
My husband and I both have a specific idea of what it looks and feels like to being living “Austin-style” in Austin. Decidedly in our 9 months (me) and 4 months (him) of living here we still haven’t yet achieved that lifestyle goal. Before we moved here this tour has really made us feel like we’re in and a part of Austin. Making the trip down just for this was so much fun and I kind of miss that now that Austin is our home. Either way, touring people’s cribs is a unique way to experience the city and get a bit of that “how the other half lives”.
Speaking of “the other half” I must admit that co-existing with my excitement and love for these spaces, is a more disapproving set of thoughts and feelings. You see, on this tour I get to step into the residences of some lucky ass fucking people and after I’m done oohing and aahing it’s hard for me to have too much respect for all that luxury and privilege when I know so many people are suffering in the world. I tend to doubt most people (like the owners) are doing much about and I find myself looking at their nice things and thinking that such excess only exists because others have been deprived. I think they only have that killer pad basically because of the subjugation of people all over the world. I’m not setting out to show how this makes sense here, but I know that it’s the truth in so many ways. Now in fairness I also realize that depending on who’s making the comparison, I’m a lucky bastard too and that this feeling of mine is largely based upon where I place the threshold of judgement. My frame of reference for luxury is American but my frame of reference for suffering is global – pretty ‘tarded I know. Yet I find a lot of validity in how I’m viewing this, but again this isn’t the post to get into all that, I just wanted to put it out because it’s extremely relevant to the kind of architect/builder I am going to be.
So, let’s move on shall we… and begin with my short list of Home Tour Tips:
- Don’t expect to see all the houses. The tour is 11am – 6pm and there are 16 homes. We have made it to exactly half of the homes each year, which is fine because we find we only have an interest in seeing about that many.
- Expect to remove your shoes before entering many homes, or be prepared to scoot around in the oh so fashionable medical-blue shoe booties that look like shower caps. And of course wear comfy shoes you can walk in for hours!
- Prepare foods in advance. Either plan ahead where you may want to grab eats, or do like we do and bring your own nosh and chow in the car so you don’t waste as much time.
- Take notes along the way. Capturing pics and thoughts as you go is the best method if you don’t want to forget something you saw. I also suggest bringing a folder of some kind to capture all the cards you may be picking up from each home.
If you’re interested in other Austin area home tours check out (although I haven’t been to any of these.):
- Heritage Homes Tour on April 28th 10am – 4pm$23 members / $28 non-members / $20 Children 12 and under.
- The Cool House Tour coming June 3rd from 10am – 6pm planning to attend
- Austin Pond Tour on June 9th & 10th
- Austin NARI Tour of Homes in October $25 per ticket / 7 homes