http-equiv='refresh'/> Tin TeePee/Log Cabin: Frank Lloyd Wright

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Frank Lloyd Wright

Although I’ve never lived in a modern style home I’ve always admired modern architecture.  Frank Lloyd Wright’s Arizona home—Taliesin West—is located in Scottsdale.  Wednesday was the day to take a tour—one of the best tours I’ve ever taken!!  Tom T—our tour guide was an elderly, very knowledgeable man with a clear love for anything related to Frank Lloyd Wright.

Frank Lloyd Wright was born in 1867 living to be 91 years old.  He was a prolific architect even as he aged, designing and building 350 structures between the ages of 81 and 91!  He had three wives and one mistress, his last wife was 32 years younger!!! 

There is still a Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture where scholarships are given only to women as the Foundation believes women are not well represented in the architecture world.

All Frank Lloyd Wright designed homes have four inch steps—always—if the steps are taller or shorter than four inches, it isn’t a Frank Lloyd Wright design.  He loved the color “cherokee red” and used it extensively in all designs.  A red tile was placed to the left of the front door in each house and as FLW also decided where the furniture would be placed, if a homeowner moved any of the furniture, the red tile had to be returned as the house would no longer be considered a FLW design. 

DSCN2321FLW didn’t like tall people—he frequently said, “anything over six feet tall is a waste of material!”  The doorways in this house were short. 

The house had no closets, he and his wife had separate bedrooms and he was a poor sleeper.  DSCN2330Her bedroomDSCN2334His bedroom

He had a healthy fear of fire thus the pool and fountains to use as a “bucket brigade” in case of fire.  At Taliesin West they hit pay dirt at a mere 486 feet—copious amounts of water and to this day even though in the city limits of Scottsdale, the house is not tied to the city water system. 


FLW was an accomplished painist and dancer but was a deadbeat—he didn’t pay his bills!  Our guide told us FLW invented both the bi-fold closet door and indirect lighting—he loved wall sconces.


The theater was awesome—95% perfect acoustics and was named one of the Academy of Architecture top 100 structures of the 20th century. 



Tour participants are allowed to sit anywhere on the furniture—Tom T told us a portion of the tour fees goes to re-upholster the seating periodically. 

DSCN2322DSCN2325Portions of the house, classroom, and office originally had canvas roofs—after all, it rarely rains in the desert.  The roofs are now covered with a material which makes it possible to air condition the buildings. 

He sent his students out into the hills around the home site to find natural building materials—they found petroglyphs--


If you ever find yourself near Scottsdale—stop and visit Taliesin West—it is well worth the time and money!




  1. Amazing how much has changed since I lived in Scottsdale 40 years ago. FLW's house and school were not in the city limits then. Also, each living site there had to battle scorpions and other critters since many of the walls in the dwellings were not plumb enough to meet or the doors were not secure from crawlies. Cactus, not water pools, were more evident then too. Nice to see things have changed for the better.

  2. I'd enjoy that tour.... Fallingwater, another FLW home is in western Pennysylvania... a days drive from us... you've planted the idea for a summer mini vacation ;-)

  3. We enjoyed our visit several years ago

  4. I live in Scottsdale and have been on this tour twice!
    Always interesting.

  5. Thanks for the idea. It would be a good tour.

  6. I'm a big FLW fan and really need to make this tour next time we're in the area. Thanks for sharing such great pics - and the information about the red tile!

  7. One of his other houses is overlooking the Snake River at Hagerman Idaho---I used to drive by it but never stopped.....wish I had taken the time/


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