I’ve always been captivated by this Dines and Kraft Tudor. It’s exactly what comes to mind for most of us when we think of Lakewood.
These homes are becoming rare because few people understand how to update them properly and still retain the original characteristics. Fortunately, this one has been lovingly updated with no historic loss.
That’s largely due to the talents of Carol Gantt, who is widely respected as an expert on renovating historic Dallas homes — the right way. She worked with the former owners in 2013 to enhance this Dines and Kraft Tudor and add elements that were true to the period but made sense for the way we live today.
That included adding an overhang to the front door for protection from the elements and updating the sunporch. It had been enclosed in the 1980s with stained-glass windows in colors that were wrong for the period. Saltillo tile covered the concrete flooring, so out it went, and the dark and depressing room was turned back into a porch.
The exterior of this home is notable as there are a variety of patterns in the brickwork. This was seen in the more expensive houses of the era. It seems evident this was constructed to be a showplace. You have to consider it may have been a model for the eclectic and quirky talents of Dines and Kraft because it contains all of their most notable custom features.
Let’s start with those gorgeous stained glass windows in the living room. They were not in the original plans. Gantt told me a former owner had the house plans, indicating the windows were added during the construction process. Arches were important to Dines and Kraft. This was a great solution to balance flow and privacy. If you are wondering about the ceiling height, it’s original. It was not unusual to have tall ceilings in the formal living room and was an excellent way to create a greater sense of space.
According to Gantt, this one is a Batchelder, named after the artist Ernest Batchelder, who was a leader in the American Arts and Crafts movement. He was a master at marketing and one of the first to offer his tiles through catalogs. You can tell a Batchelder fireplace from others of the period by the neutral color palette. They often feature birds, flowers, and animals, so for goodness sake, never paint one of them!
Two of the most eclectic features you can find in a Dines and Kraft Tudor are a stalactite ceiling and Monday morning floors.
Let’s start with the ceiling. In the 1920s, plaster was an art form. It’s easy to see the craftsmen of the day delighted in their work. These ceilings resemble the whipped peaks of egg whites or stalactites and are completely arresting if you’ve never seen them before. This home has an original stalactite ceiling in the breakfast room that is simply stunning.
Monday morning floors are a nickname for what you may know as trencadís or pique assiette. If you think it’s a bunch of broken tiles, you are correct. Whatever remained from the previous week’s construction was chopped, up and a broken tile floor mosaic created. It was a clever and artistic way to repurpose leftovers.
Original Monday morning floors are highly coveted by purists today. When the bathrooms were redone, Gantt carefully planned everything to mimic what you would find in the late 1920s, including the recreation of a Monday morning tile floor in one of the bathrooms.
This Dines and Kraft Tudor has had owners that respected its’ character and history, which is a bonus for buyers today. To have a 2,880-square-foot, four-bedroom, three-bathroom home with a powder bath, guest quarters, and a romantic New Orleans-style courtyard behind it is a dream come true for any enthusiast of Tudor homes.
Compass Real Estate’s Lauren Farris has this rare Dines and Kraft Tudor at 6914 Westlake Avenue listed for $995,000. Finding a gem like this for under a million is a treat indeed.