This home is the “twin” of 5917 but the entrance to 5921 has been altered to accommodate a small powder room. The front door and matching interior door have an asymmetrical window opening. The doors are oak. Once in the large living room, note the dark wooden strips that define the space in a decorative way. The walls are stucco just like the exterior of the building. Built-in bookcases duplicate those in the home next door and are placed symmetrically on the west wall.
The fireplace is also the same, although a brick wall has been added between the two connected fireplaces to improve the air flow. The wooden screen next to the fireplace covers the opening to the staircase. To the left is the entrance to the front porch. This porch has had heating added to it and thus the living space has been expanded. In the afternoons the space is sunlit and the plants are happy.
Through the living room to the dining room is an open passageway. The dining room has windows looking toward the back and a built-in china cabinet. There is a doorway to the kitchen. Since the current owners purchased the home in 1955, they do not know much about the original kitchen, but they believe that some of the cabinets may be original. A previous resident spoke of a table being by the east window alcove. There is room for all the appliances and a space for a table. It is a cozy kitchen. Back in the hallway, there is a door to the new powder room.
The second floor is not open to the tour this year, but this description was in the 2004 Home Tour booklet:
The trip up the staircase is one of many turns and landings. This was done to fit the staircase in the space available. At the top of the stairs is a bedroom turned office with a unique corner porch. This was built to capture the lake breezes. When the home was built the Broadway Armory was not there, nor anything else. They were in the process of building the “L” embankment in 1908. The little porch also has a vent to the attic. Note that the corner is not a large support beam. Burley Griffin intended to change the building ideas of the past that relied on corner support beams. In many corners of this home he has recessed or inverted the corners and actually created more walls.
There are four bedrooms on this floor and a full bath. Each bedroom has a front window and a corner window. At the second story on the exterior these windows are joined by a dark wood decorative banding. This floor is in the original layout created by Burley Griffin. The floors are maple.
One of the elements of Prairie school design that these twin buildings exhibit is modular design. This type of design is based on a square of a certain dimension, example 31 inches. The whole building can then be placed of a grid of 31 inch squares. Even the window sizes are designed in this 31 inch size. This was investigated first by Paul Krutty from University of Illinois who brought attention to these homes when the current owner was in his architecture class at UIC in 1985.