As you’ve figured out by now, I am a big fan of getting inspiration from many different places. One of my top choices for gawking at good design is architecture. Not just brickwork and the larger part of structures, but the small details as well. I am always looking at photos online of structures all over the place — home architecture is my favorite — or checking out giant oversized books loaded with pictures from the library. But luckily, I have some really fun stuff to see nearby.
My last four jobs have all been in downtown. That’s six years of wandering around what is really not a very large area, so I’ve had a lot of time to notice small things. So today, I wanted to share some favorites of mine.
At the very top of the post is the Montana Power Building. I really like the single color of stone over the entire front of the building. It really makes the details and patterns pop out. But my absolute favorite part of the building is the lettering at the top lights up blue at night. So pretty!
It’s a very small thing, but I really like the doorway to the Billings Dance Club. The simple variation in the glass shape and the deco lettering are a wonderful retro touch. Another small but beautiful touch are these metal rosettes. They are studded all over the ticket booth at the Babcock Theater.
For those of you not from the area, the Babcock Theater is a wonderful downtown building that has been undergoing a massive renovation. It is a century old, and needed a lot of repairs. But fortunately, the work being done fits the existing style very well. I really could do an entire post about all things Babcock, but I will stick with only showing one more thing for now. The Babcock Apartments entryway is simple, but well-decorated. Now I wouldn’t personally choose all this for my house, but it works for the space. The color of the walls, the muted wallpapers and drapes all make the entry feel larger than it is and gives a grand impression. The color of the wallpaper is not my favorite, but I really dig the pattern.
Now to wrap up with a detail that is in my top five for Downtown architecture details — these lovely purple medallions (below). As you can tell by the angle, they are really far above eye level, so they are very easy to miss. The rich, saturated greens and purples just pop so well against the surrounding brick work. Combined with the angled bricks below, these simple touches really make this building interesting. And no, I am not going to tell you which building this is. The next time you are in Downtown Billings, you need to look around more! And tell me if you ever figure it out.
So have a happy Friday everyone, and don’t forget to look around.