Entries Tagged as '1990s'
November 7th, 2008 · 1 Comment
Design Through the Decades - Part 25
The homes in Phoenix during the 1990s had several new design features available to homebuyers. Some features were good, some were okay, and some were too trendy for their own good. Homes were usually two stories, so homebuilders added half baths under the stairs, lofts at the top of the stairs, and a den or office below near the front door. Great rooms (open space floor plan design combining the family room with the kitchen) gained vast popularity in the mid- to late-1990s.
The decade-defining design feature of the 1990s in Phoenix was the vaulted ceiling. Most homes were two-story (build as much house as you can on the smallest lot that you can) with vaulted ceilings to make the homes appear more spacious.
Here’s another 1990s Phoenix home with vaulted ceilings.
Pot shelves became a standard in new homes in the 1990s.
Bay windows at the breakfast room or dining room were very popular in the 1990s and usually placed at the front of the house.
Functional obsolescence is when a home feature was useful and popular its beginning but became useless and outdated over time. Just like homes began adding two-car carports and garages in the 1960s when households moved up to two cars per family.
What better example of functional obsolescence in the 1990s than the entertainment niche. It was great to have a place to put your TV, your stereo equipment, your CD player, and to hide the cords.
Sometimes entertainment niches were hidden in a half wall or “pony” wall.
What makes these entertainment niches of the 1990s so obsolete today is that flat-screen TVs became bigger and more affordable in the 2000s. And with digital TV taking over in February 2009, older analog TVs will become dinosaurs.
So what do you do with these customized, outdated, huge structures? Tear them out?
People in the 1990s spent less time outdoors, supposedly, because patios diminished in size and stature.
Plus, patios took up a lot of space on the smaller lots. There’s not much room for a yard or pool if a patio is too big.
It was mentioned in the 1990s Kitchen post, but Corian counters were a popular upgrade in new homes in the 1990s.
Technology features of the 1990s: CAT-5 computer wiring and small satellite dishes.
Coming Up: What new design features were popular in the 2000s in Phoenix?
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Tags: Design Through the Decades · 1990s · Features
October 31st, 2008 · 4 Comments
Design Through the Decades - Part 19
Design Through the Decades takes a look at bathrooms in the 1990s in Phoenix, Arizona. Not a lot of photos in this post because the 1990s bathrooms pretty much all looked the same. Hardly any innovative designs, mostly due to the high demand for home construction. The goal was: build it quickly and efficiently with little variation from house to house.
It’s okay to yawn. Nothing too exciting about Phoenix bathrooms in the 1990s. Let’s start with the poster child bathroom of the 1990s: white wash cabinets, pure white cultured marble counter top, brass faucets, separate shower and bathtub with brass trim, big mirror, and separate toilet room.
Another cookie-cutter 1990s bathroom with brass accents and white wash cabinets.
As mentioned, separate showers and bathtubs became standard in Phoenix homes in the 1990s. Oftentimes, there was a huge window next to the bathtub so that all the neighbors could see you. Builders then charged extra money to install glass block to ensure privacy.
Another typical 1990s bathroom.
Light fixtures with big glass bulbs and brass backing were very popular in the 1990s.
The owners of this 1990s Phoenix home paid extra for that window. The brass faucets and trim were included for free.
Towards the late 1990s, brass turned into silver.
Euro style cabinets, popular in the 1980s, spilled over into the early 1990s and popped up briefly in the late 1990s in the town of Surprise, Arizona. Here’s a Phoenix bathroom with euro style cabinets and Hollywood lights from the early 1990s.
There’s not a lot more than can be shown. Squint your eyes and they all look the same.
Coming Up Next: Phoenix bathrooms from the 2000s. Significant changes occurred to bathroom design. Bye, bye, cookie-cutter design.
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Tags: Bathroom · Design Through the Decades · 1990s
October 24th, 2008 · 3 Comments
Design Through the Decades - Part 12
Let’s check out typical Phoenix, Arizona kitchens from the 1990s as we continue our series Design Through the Decades.
The early 1990s saw a continuation of the lighter cabinet stain seen in the 1980s. However, the u-shaped/horseshoe kitchen of the 80s was replaced by kitchen islands.
Another 1990s kitchen with island.
There was an unwritten law in the 1990s that if you got a kitchen island you were not allowed to have cabinet door handles.
Well, even not having a kitchen island meant no cabinet door handles. These homeowners went with tile counters instead of Formica.
Corian counters were also very popular in the 1990s.
A closet pantry was very popular in the 1990s. Where else were you going to store your bread machine?
But the kitchen style of the 1990s in Phoenix, Arizona was the white wash cabinet look. It became very popular in the mid- to late-1990s. White wash was hot, hot, hot. White was the preferred appliance color.
Again, no cabinet door handles!
I think you get the idea.
The Euro style cabinets of the 1980s (white laminate doors with blond wood trim) spilled over into the 1990s. This Phoenix kitchen was built in 1991. Smooth-top stoves were very popular (either white or black).
The Euro style cabinets might have disappeared in Phoenix by the mid-1990s, but they still showed up in other parts of the Phoenix metro area. This home in Surprise, Arizona was built in 1997 and sold for $78,000 brand-new.
Big changes to kitchen design in the 2000s will be examined in the next post.
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Tags: Kitchen · Design Through the Decades · 1990s
October 18th, 2008 · 1 Comment
Design Through the Decades - Part 6
The population in Phoenix, Arizona reached 983,403 in 1990 (up another 200,000 since 1980), but since other US cities were also growing quickly, Phoenix remained the 9th largest US city in 1990 (same ranking as in 1980). However, it seemed like everyone was moving to Phoenix. The population grew by over 330,000 in the 1990s! That’s a lot of demand for new houses. Phoenix had to grow further west, further north, and further west in Ahwatukee.
That meant home builders were building like crazy. In order to keep up the pace, construction had to be like an assembly line. Wood frame, stucco. Next. Wood frame, stucco. Next. Once you picked out your floor plan, you got to choose Elevation A, Elevation B, or Elevation C, which usually meant an extra $1,000 for framed windows, and another $1,000 for a different air vent over the garage.
Here’s a typical 1990s home built in 1997.
Built in 1992, this home was probably the higher-priced Elevation C plan, what with all the fancy corners and wall extensions.
One of the most high-celebrated features of homes in the 1990s was the bay window dining room. This created a narrow entryway which was a real joy when moving in/out with large furniture.
Another way to distinguish your home from all the others in your subdivision was to have column pop-outs. By adding an extra layer of styrofoam and stucco, your house was elevated in style and class.
This is another example of corner pop-outs.
Using the same “happy face” style of the 1980s, this 1990s home says hello. (Another copied style from the 1980s was having the front door on the side of the house.)
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Tags: Design Through the Decades · 1990s · Exterior