Archive for the ‘Arts and Craft’ Category

The Donaldson House: A Look Into One of Minnesota’s Grand Homes

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

The Donaldson Mansion was selected last year to be featured in Larry Millet’s new book coming out in November, “Preserving Our Grand Homes: Minnesota’s Own”. It’s being published through the Minnesota Historical Society. Larry gave me a call asking if I knew of any extraordinary homes that might work for his book, and I said, “Well, yes, I think I have just the home you are looking for!”.  The owner was very excited and honored that his home was one of the few that made the cut list.

Larry and crew stopped by a month ago and filmed a short video of the home for the book release, and all I can say is that I wish it was longer!

The Donaldson Mansion in Minneapolis

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013
Historic Donaldson House
1712 Mount Curve Avenue, Minneapolis

Nestled on top of Lowry Hill in Minneapolis is a beautiful home like none other.Built in 1906, this stunning home was designed for Lawrence Donaldson, who with his brother William, founded the Donaldson Department Store in Minneapolis. The architectural firm of Kees and Colburn was commissioned to design the family’s residence, known for a number of major works in Minneapolis including the Grain Exchange Building, Donaldson’s Office Building, and the Charles H. Harrington Mansion. They later designed the Loring Theater, the Ford Centre, and The Lowry, to name a few.

Constructed mainly of brick, the home is exquisitely detailed with a mixture of several design styles, the most prevalent being Arts & Crafts and Beaux Arts. Subtle design elements throughout the home, linked to Mr. Donaldson’s Scottish heritage, feature the thistle. Probably the most identifiable symbol of all things Scottish, the flower can be found on the facade of the house, the entry columns, above the entry door, on the chimneys, in the living room Tiffany window, and more!


John Bradstreet Sun Parlor

Completed sometime in 1907, additional modifications to the home began in 1908 by expanding the north side – a dining room and a second floor bedroom were enlarged, a sleeping porch was added, and the screened-in porch became an enclosed sun room. The Donaldson’s also hired well known designer John Bradstreet to create a Japanese inspired Sun Parlor, as well as design the Reception Room/Study off the main foyer. In 1916, the carriage house was completed with four large carriage stalls, a second floor apartment, a number of work rooms, and a connecting tunnel.

As happened to many large properties in the Twin Cities as time moved on, the estate was subdivided into six separate lots in 1959 when it was sold by the Donaldson family. After the passing of many decades and multiple owners, the main house was bought by the current owners in 2000, who later that year acquired the original northwest hillside lot extending down to Kenwood Parkway, and in 2001 the carriage house. With three of the six lots reunited, the land totals just over an acre, or 44,792 square feet, representing one of the largest residential properties in Minneapolis.


John Bradstreet Study

This historic home is also For Sale: Thankfully the new owners had a vision of restoring the home back to its former splendor. Over the last decade, with love and dedication, some of the highest quality craftsman and artisans were employed to bring the home back to life, while incorporating state of the art technology and modern conveniences for today’s busy lifestyle.

The Charles Keith Manor in Princeton

Thursday, May 17th, 2012
 902 1st Street, Princeton, MN

Built in 1905, this beautiful historic home was commissioned by Judge Charles Keith and designed by leading architect John Walter Stevens. Mr. Stevens is well known for his commercial buildings in St. Paul, as well as designing several homes on Summit Avenue and in the Ramsey Hill historic district.

Owner Charles Keith was born in Farmington, Maine in 1851, moving to Princeton, MN in 1873. He quickly became a prominent figure in the county being elected Justice of the Peace in 1875 and Probate Judge in 1876. After holding the latter position for 10 years, he studied law and was accepted to the bar in 1892. In addition to being a banker and lawyer, he also was an expert timber cruiser, surveyor, and lumber businessman.

Featuring a large lot with majestic trees and wrap around the porch, this amazing home retains most of its original historic elements. The Reception Hall walls are covered in the original lincrusta paper of a gold leafed nouveau design and features ceilings done in 3 inch metal leaf painted in deep red with oak design, as well as oak beamed ceilings and wainscoting.The most stunning room in the home is the formal dining room finished in dark oak paneling and beamed ceilings. The room is surrounded by a hand painted mural of pine forests highlighted with pinecone and bough stenciled designs in-between each ceiling beam as seen in the photo below.


Frank Lloyd Wright Home in Stillwater

Sunday, June 13th, 2010

I am sure there are plenty of people living in Minnesota that have no idea we have an architectural gem for sale in Stillwater, designed by none other than the infamous architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

10121 83rd Street N, Stillwater, MN

Known as the Donald and Virginia Lovness estate in Stillwater, Minnesota, the home sits on 20 acres of lakefront, featuring a 2 bedroom home, as well as a small cottage. The home was completed around 1957 and was personally built by the Lovness family. They also had Mr. Wright design furniture and light fixtures, all included with the sale of the home. I have to say that the stone fireplaces in both buildings are absolutely stunning!

Built of Wisconsin dolomite stone and Fir wood, the home is now called the “Studio”, setting it apart from the 800 square foot “Cottage” (pictured above) just a few yards away that was completed in the late 1970’s. Wright also left plans for three additional cottages, which also are included with the sale of the home and await the new owner to finish.

Mr. Lovness died in 2001 and is survived by his wife, who sadly is selling her dream home. Being the original owner, she and her husband have meticulously maintained the home over the years, which shows as soon as you step onto the property. For all this tranquility, it won’t cost you much – the current list price is $2.4 Million, listed with Lakes Sotheby’s Realty.

If you would like more information on the home, or are an interested buyer, please feel free to contact me anytime!

View 360 of Studio Exterior

View 360 of Studio Interior

View 306 of Cottage Exterior

View 360 of Cottage Interior