The Shoe House

The Shoe House is located in the town of Hellam, New York; U.S.A.It was completed in 1949 and was owned by Colonel Haines. The owner conceptualized a house that looks exactly like a shoe so as to advertise his shoe manufacturing businesses located in Maryland and Pennsylvania. The house was located along a busy highway where drivers could notice the ‘house billboard’ advertisement.
The building is 5 storeys high and is made of a wooden frame structure covered with a wire mesh and cement stucco interior and exterior. It is a 3 bed roomed house with a kitchen and two bathrooms.

It was used as a weekend motel for a few seasons. It’s now a leading tourist destination and attracts thousands of tourists every year and is used as a museum in commemoration of Colonel Haines.
The architect ingeniously used the shoe motif everywhere he got the chance. The widow grills, doors, exterior fence all have the shoe motif incorporated. The dog house is also modeled to look like a shoe. This design initially aided the client in attracting potential customers to his shoe business and now generates revenue as a museum.
The choice of construction materials used to construct the shoe house was guided by the flexibility. A wooden structural frame is cost-effective and easy to shape .Wire mesh holds the cement plaster firmly and allows for the cement to cover in any profile. Cement stucco finish is also very durable and requires little maintenance save for an occasional paint job.
The actual cost of construction of this house is negligible compared to the current value of the house. This is another marvelous example of how thoughtful designs can greatly increase real estate value cost-effectively.

Francis Gichuhi (692 Posts)

Architect Francis Gichuhi . B.Arch. University of Nairobi. Registered Architect, Kenya. Member, Architectural Association of Kenya. Contacts. email info@a4architect.com. Telephone +254721410684


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  3 comments for “The Shoe House

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