• March 29, 2004

Historic Garage Examples

Get inspired by these bungalow garages

Garages, Inspiration

Garages of the 1920’s

A project looming way in the future, but a project none the less, is our garage. The original owner of our house, John L. Welsh, built a private garage with a dirt floor and a paper roof in 1919. That building is no longer standing.

Aren’t the doors on this garage beautiful?

A newer, larger garage was built a few years ago. The garage takes up most of the backyard. The cement lawn probably makes our garage appear even larger and uglier. Yards in Los Angeles tend to be small and filling in the backyard with cement is actually a fairly popular thing to do.

Designs for one, two and three car garages.

People often use the space for an outdoor patio. The previous owners of this house used the cement lawn to park their cars on. Growing up in the Midwest where green lawns covered acres and mowing took half a day, I find the cement lawns appallingly ugly.

I’ll post some pictures of our ugly garage and cement lawn soon. In the mean time, enjoy these vintage garage photos and illustrations that we are using for inspiration.

This charming illustration is from an Aladdin catalog.

You can see the Tudor influences on this garage.

Many homes in our neighborhood were built with a pergola framing, or if vine covered, obscuring the view of the garage.

This image is from “The Second Book of Houses” and the caption states: Simple and yet architecturally pleasing is the garage on the place of G. C. Price, at Charleston, West Va., of which Dennison & Hirons were the architects.

Image is also from “The Second Book of Houses”

Vintage garage that has survived to the present day.

Comments { 8 }
  1. Elsie

    a paper roof? really? I grew up outside of LA (Bell) and remember cement yards. . .
    I have been showing my DH the pics of vintage kitchens (and am now saving the garage pics). Very inspiring. May I ask where you find these pictures?
    Thank you for documenting your home restoration. I “visit” regularly.
    (in grassy WNY)

  2. heather

    Hi! I found the building permit for the garage and was surprised that it said paper roof. Maybe it was tar paper? I guess it is little wonder the building is no longer standing!

    If I find an image online, in a magazine or book I scan it in and save it. I have several home decorating books that were published in the 1910′s. I also search for old books online at used and rare book stores. Sometimes they will show images from the books they are selling. Aladdin Homes sales catalogs from 1908 – 1954 are online (http://clarke.cmich.edu/aladdin/catdir.htm). They have a 1916 home furnishings catalog that is a great resource.


  3. Elsie

    I had been thinking that our area doesn’t seem to have as many A&C type homes. Then I opened my eyes and see elements everywhere. As I drove through East Aurora NY today (think Roycroft:
    http://www.arts-crafts.com/archive/hdavis.shtml )
    the only thing that prevented me from snapping a few photos was the fear of being late for a dental appt. Well, that and wondering how to inobstrusively take a picture of a backyard garage.
    I bookmarked the Aladdin site. I think it would be fun to build small home based on a vintage plan. Still working on convincing my carpenter husband. Also need to grow up a few more kids so small is feasible.
    Again, thanks for your inspiring online work.
    TAR paper – oh. duh. should have used a few more brain cells and I might had figured that one out.

  4. Lisa

    Thanks so much for all the time and effort you’ve put into this web site (not to mention the incredible work you’ve done on your house!) The garage pictures are so helpful to me. That’s a future project that I’d like to do. I wonder if anyone has found a way to have an automatic garage door that still looks authentic to the period?
    Good luck,

  5. heather


    Hi! Sorry it has taken me a while to get back to you. I have been looking into the same thing. I have found some companies that are making modern doors that have a vintage feel (although $$$$)…

    Amarr Garage Doors (Carriage House Doors): www. amarr.com

    General American Garage Door Co. (Presidential Series, Washington): http://www.gadco.com

    Overhead Door Corp. (Ranch House Collection, Series #147): http://www.overheaddoor.com

    Raynor (American Rivers collection): http://www.raynor.com

    Summit Door, Inc. (Colonial collection): www. summit-door.com

    Wayne-Dalton Corp. (Cabriolet): http://www.wayne-dalton.com)

  6. Lisa

    Wow! Thanks so much! You’re like the genie in the lamp that pops out and says “what do you need”.

  7. Phil from Jax, FL

    Thanks for the garage images. I am building a garage for my 1911 brick bungelow and needed ideas to complete the doors…

  8. Derek

    We still have the original garage next to our house, it’s in rough condition though. It has a wood barn floor and a sliding door. The door is rotting on the bottom, which isn’t surprising, since it’s 80 years old. I’m planning on bulding my own garage door, I saw one in Fine Homebuilding, it was probably 6 months ago.

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