St. Louis, MO 1955
The Theodore and Bette Pappas House is a 3,000-square-foot Usonian Automatic on 3.364 acres of wooded, rolling hills in St. Louis County, Missouri. Although the house was designed by Wright in 1955, construction did not begin until 1960. The house was completed in 1964. Bette and Ted Pappas, the original and only owners, moved in with their four children in 1964. The entire house is built of pre-cast, terra-cotta-tinted concrete blocks, formed on a 2-foot module. The living room combines a Cherokee red concrete floor and rich warm Philippine mahogany furniture designed by Wright. The terrace off the living room, with floor-to-ceiling glass double doors, has glass insets, mitered at the corners for a grill of concrete and glass. There are more than 500 glass insets in the building. The huge living/dining room, with a fireplace, is the focus of the house and merges with the foyer beyond it. Wright designed the dining table and chairs. They are made of Philippine mahogany and covered in a reddish-gold fabric over foam rubber cushions. To the left of the fireplace and foyer is the main entry. Changes in floor level, as well as different ceiling planes, add variety and interest in the house. The home’s concrete floors have a square scoring. This is the basic design module throughout the house. The four bedrooms in the house have walls paneled in Philippine mahogany, ceilings of concrete textile blocks and built-in furniture wherever possible. Coffered blocks are exposed on the interior walls of the house. The master bedroom has its own bathroom. The materials for the golden draperies and cream-colored bedspreads were selected by Mrs. Wright and carried out in all four bedrooms. The home has three different roof levels. The kitchen glows with natural daylight. Its 12.5-foot ceiling rises above the surrounding roofs to take in light through clerestory windows. The landscaping plans were an integral part of the house, and were included in the architect’s fee. The furniture is included in the sale price.