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James Swan House
Pasadena, California

Named "Torrington Place," the Swan house, like the Fay and Gordon houses, combined Colonial, Georgian, classical and shingle-style elements. The result was a composition beset by conflicting elements: a bulky portico, a disproportionately large, second-level Georgian window molding, and a lone, centrally positioned, hipped dormer. These combined to draw attention away from the sheltering form of the east gable, effectively fighting any balance and unity that the gable might have provided. On the interior, the profusion of decorative detailing better resembled traditional, high-Victorian decorative schemes than the restrained richness of the Shingle Style, or even the eclectic elegance of the Aesthetic Movement. For its shortcomings, however, the Swan house allowed the Greenes a chance to further explore accommodations for outdoor living. Its deep piazzas, for example, provided an elegant opportunity to enjoy the Southern California climate.