Oh! It's 'Gingerbread Modern'

'Architecture meets gingerbread' for eight miniatures inspired by mid-century modern
Fridays on the Homefront
It's a houseful of fun—a super-cool Palmer and Krisel-style Butterfly Roof House of gingerbread. Photo: courtesy suburbanpop.com

It's always a joy to see gumdrop dreams and candy cottages come to life as dessert-sized holiday treats.

However, there's something extra special about beholding seasonal gingerbread houses, especially those designs of recent vintage that have been taking a leap in a mid-century modern direction.

Epicureans, architects, and home cooks alike are rolling up their sleeves to build fanciful cookie, cake, and candy houses modeled after modernist homes.

And yes, it does take a steady hand to craft delicate frosting icicles under the eaves of a scaled-down version of Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater House, and clever thinking to use glowing gumdrops as stand-ins for Christmas lights on a 1960s-style A-frame cabin. But, really, anyone can do it.

"After all these years of seeing traditional Old World style architecture represented in gingerbread house-making, it's so interesting to see mid-century modern architecture being represented by gingerbread-house builders," points out Southern California-based historian and entertainer Charles Phoenix.

"They're adorable little treasures, and the beauty is that they come in all shapes and sizes, at all levels of expertise versus amateur, so they're appealing to everyone."

To add to this year's holiday delights, we've put together a grouping of confectioners' creations of every kind, all designed as edible modern architectural interpretations. Care to try your hand at baking one? It's a great family activity—and techniques and templates are included so you can do a bake-your-own tiny home.


  Fridays on the Homefront

• Butterfly-Roof House
It's a houseful of fun, this Palmer and Krisel-style butterfly-roof gingerbread house (pictured above and at top) decorated with fashionable candy cane palm trees spotted at Suburban Pop.

The original design was adapted from the 'Woodland Mid-Century Modern Gingerbread House' kit.

"The kit from World Market is adorable as is," writes Jenny James from her Suburban Pop blog. "But with a few tweaks, you can get a butterfly roof. Just cut the middle section in half and swap it around. I staggered them and assemble the walls wrong side out for added texture."

For this one, no baking is required. The kit includes connectable cookie panels, and comes complete with candy beads, icing, pastel gumdrops, and peppermint sticks.


Fridays on the Homefront
• Gingerbread Geodesic Dome

Inspired by Buckminster Fuller's designs, hexagons are attached to the dome shell with icing. To see how easy this delight-filled dome is to make, check out the two-minute video by clicking here. A kit is also available from designer Scout Regalia that includes a laser-cut template, and recipes. Photo: courtesy inhabitat.com


Fridays on the Homefront
• Prefab Villa Savoye

Le Corbusier's architecture reimagined with candy cane pilotis make this tiny treasure a winner in any baking contest! Presented by Hometta, Inc., the miniature Villa Savoye is a modular design with a sloping roof created by Bryan Boyer using bubble gum windows and a green sugar lawn. Photo: courtesy Hometta, Inc.


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