Ah, the mid-Aughties (aka the 2000s). Austin’s protracted boom had begun, but longtime residents—especially the wave of arty bohemians who had washed over East and South Austin—could still afford a plot of land, a fixer-upper, or small new build. The design-savvy use of recycled and inexpensive/”humble” materials was especially popular for remodeling and building anew: Polished concrete floors, raw concrete and cinderblock (CMU) walls, reclaimed wood and industrial appliances, mixed with modernist details such as simple lines, light-colored woods, and clerestory windows, ruled.
Outside, hardscaping took the form of Ipe or its imitations, more concrete, and steel (often our rusty friend Corten), and drought-resistant plants “mulched” with gravel or decomposed granite were standard. Dwell magazine was in its heyday, and so was this modernism- and Japanese-influenced mix of mid-priced, often local materials and thoughtful design.
This 1,280-square-foot home in East Austin’s Holly neighborhood is a perfect example of that heady period. Designed by Austin’s Studio Robin Dempsey, it was, in fact, featured in Dwell, and it’s held up well, able to serve as a blank slate for expression of its occupants’ personalities while retaining a personality of its own.
The home has a standing-seam metal roof and steel-beam construction with concrete blocks and HardiPlank walls. The kitchen has Ikea-style cabinetry, bamboo counters, and stainless appliances. There are polished concrete floors and Austrian pine doors throughout.
The home has three bedrooms and two bathrooms, and private areas can be opened up or closed off with rolling, barn-style doors that line the the hallway.
The home has a backyard featuring a covered patio, Ipe fencing, drought-resistant landscaping, and a chicken coop.
• 2202 Santa Rosa Street [Luke Graves Realty]