Home sweet gnome? This 1923 house in Los Angeles exemplifies the fairy-tale subset of Historical Revival homes of the early 20th century.

By Douglas Keister

Wind your way along the steep hillside flanking Griffith Park in Los Angeles, and you’ll encounter streets with old-world names. It seems fitting that, rounding a curve on Glendower Avenue, you stumble on a house straight out of a fairy tale. In a city known for make-believe and artifice, this Storybook homebuilt in 1923 is a touchstone; its studied imperfections are perfectly imperfect.

The genesis of the house can be traced to a civil engineer named Rufus Buck, who was inspired by some of art director Harry Oliver’s creations. Oliver holds title to the Storybook Style’s first permutations; it was he who designed the Tam O’Shanter, a swayback restaurant built in 1921, as well as the first Storybook Style home, now called Spadena House or the Witch’s House, built as a movie set in Culver City in 1921. Read more.

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