I just received this month’s Eichler newsletter and was disappointed to see that almost every page was a reflection on the past, and not the future, of Eichler homes. Is this really the content that is of interest to modern day Eichler homeowners?
While I hate to be blunt, virtually everyone featured in this newsletter had one foot in the grave. Just because someone is an original owner and can still fog a mirror doesn’t make them an Eichler expert or worthy of inclusion within the newsletter.
The history of Eichler homes is well known and well documented. Wouldn’t the newsletter better serve its audience and advertisers if it focused more on the future of Eichler homes? If Eichler preservation is important to everyone, let’s try to focus on the future and not the past.
I recognize that the newsletter is free which I appreciate, however the last few issues seemed very light on content. As a result I think readership is going to suffer unless a more concerted effort is spent looking ahead, not behind.
You glossed over the mention that the newsletter will soon be turned into a four color magazine called CA Modern. I imagine this change reflects the need to get past the black & white view of history and focus more on the 4C world of today.
In addition, the newsletter is primarily a way to inform owners about maintenance problems and this issue is no different with its very timely look at mini-split AC units. It's pure gravy that the major and minor history of Eichler homes has been captured for all posterity.
Being in publishing myself, I'd like to remind everyone that while we get the newsletter for free, it's not free to put together and distribute to every Eichler owner in existence. And considering that it's better written and more authorative than most of the fluff you'll find on the newstand, it's a pretty good deal.
Yes, it is free and it takes a lot of time and $$ to create...I really love it...but I do believe there is money being paid by all of the contractors who advertise in it. In essence it is both a great way to spread wonderful information on Eichlers but it is also a way to generate money and advertising for those involved.
I am very happy the new magazine is coming out. This last issue was definately a walk down memory lane and not a look at the future. It is important we know the history of our wonderful homes while still keeping interest of the homeowners who will be here in the future.
As far as the comments regarding the past history of Eichler homes; part of design and understanding of the intents of the Achitectural details of these homes can only derived from historic perspective.
As a contractor that has devoted years to the modernization, improvement, and expansion of these homes, one of the necessary excercises invovled in this process is the analyisis of what was done historically, so that we can direct improvements while keeping true to the intention of the original design.
In this, we need to refer to the past, to better understand how to improve these homes to keep up with what new products and techinques are available (and required) today.
The Eichler Network seeems to be the only media source available that archives historic info, while allowing current soucres of home improvement to be readily available.
Through communicating with professionals in the current home improvement market, you can keep up to speed with new techiques and products that are available to continue the evolution of modern homes.
That is one of the compellng reasons to enlist help of professionals in design and construction that are experienced in this type of house.
There are others that find the history interesting as well as informative, and I suspect the history is a necessary component of understanding how to bring these homes with us into the future.
I totally agree it is important to know all of the issues and maintenance involved in maintaining our homes. The newsletter has been a huge source of much needed info for the work and renovations we have done on our home. It is in essence our Bible. This last issue however was very boring to most who do not live in Palo Alto and who are not original owners. Was anyone under the age of 80 in any of the pictures? It was a major snooze fest. I did however like the info on the coolers and the Thermador ovens. I just sort of felt like I was reading an issue of the Bocca Raton Retirement Weekly issue. With that said...I love the newsletter and always get great info from them.
I appreciate the history in the Eichler newsletter. Styles come and go and modernism is back in style. Many architects working in the 50s and 60s, like Claude Oakland, William Wurster and Cliff May, created modern homes for people who are now in their eighties. What is remarkable is the homes they designed suited the needs of the owners when they were young, middle aged, and now—in their "dotage".
I think it's a privilege to read interviews and tour the homes of original Eichler owners. Constructive criticism is one thing, but what I don't understand are the unkind remarks aimed at seniors. There's no need for that. If we're lucky, there'll come a time when a publication like the Eichler Network seeks us out and documents our own stories. If you want your ideas to become reality, why not direct it to the Network through their homeowner survey on the home page, or consider writing an article yourself that represents what you feel is missing from the publication?
Funny, I thought just the opposite. I wonder how Marty can keep coming up with such interesting stories after all of these years.
I loved the Thermador, "Building Their Dreams" article, and the Streng designer article. Oh, and by the way, it's FREE!
I did pay for all of the back issues, so I have every issue of the Eichler Newsletter, and think they're almost all fantastic.
Nonetheless, what's your recommended fix? Can you provide some sample headlines that you would like to see?
I really like the magazine's historic articles. They are a nice complement to the articles in magazines like Dwell and Atomic Ranch. I've been remodeling my house over the last year and have put a lot of thought into it because of the vision and mindset of those who designed and built these houses. It's great to have a resource that takes you back to the way people were thinking at that time, aesthetically and politically. Keep up the good work.
HMillerCollector is way off base and offensive. Asking for more focus on one age group over another is fine when done politely, but you'll do no good by alienating the older Eichler owners. Or 'younger' people like me. I have faith that CA MODERN will satisfy all with old and new wisdoms.
I have read -and written- articles about people from a range of age groups, and they all have a lot to offer. The young, rich, "Eichlerati" often offer the purest re-interpretation of Modernism.
But its the original owners who are closest to the hearts of true Eichlerholics. They are the 'gurus', and they have much to teach us.
The original owners were there in the trenches when Eichlers were "in style", when they went out of style, and now when Modernism is "in" again. They can be trusted to care. The original owners have learned to transcend that "out" and "in" nonsense the rest of us fall into, have found the proper balance of styles for themselves, have earned their seniority, and their right to OUR RESPECT!
I hope HMillerCollector finds himself waking up in the dungeon of a TacoBellMcMansion, chained to a white picket fence, and forced to listen to Rap and Tiny Tim combined, for his sins!
I enjoy reading articles from the past and about current trends. Both enrich my continuing Eichler education. My suggestion is that if you want to see a particular article, then write one and submit it for publication.
The orginal poster is just plain wrong here. He states that "the history of Eichler homes is well known and well documented" like it's written in the history books when the fact of the matter is that the only reason there's any sense of Eichler history is because of The Eichler Network documenting it. Without the types of stories he finds boring and meaningless, chances are he wouldn't even know what an Eichler is beyond a couple of nice photo spreads in a coffee table book or two.