Mullen and Bluett

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    When Stiles Clements designed this Miracle Mile clothing store after WWII, he claimed the style as "California Modern," but I think the contemporary term has been changed to "Late Moderne." It was a stunning building but the style is quite misunderstood.
    What do you Flickr-folk think about the design?

    1. JAVA1888 63 months ago | reply

      I myself think it is so fantastic! Its beautiful! I love the 3 areas of signage, especially the pylon type sign at the far end. The second floor windows and looks like planter area surrounded by a different material than brick clearly marks the main entrance if vied from afar. The overall clean, simple, yet elegant lines make a pleasing and easy to look at exterior. Its just plain awesome!

      Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Vintage Storefront Design (1940s-1950s), and we'd love to have this added to the group!

    2. teamperks 63 months ago | reply

      I always loved this place, and used to admire it every time I walked past it (I lived a couple blocks from there for awhile). Sadly, time and neglect had gotten to this building, and it didn't look nearly as pretty: the clock was long-gone and the upper-floor windows had been painted over. I think it housed a Sav-On and an office supply store of some sort. It's hard to see it from this picture, but the building had a nice cantilevered overhang over the entry.

      Still had great potential, though, and it was sad to see them demolish the building.

    3. army.arch 63 months ago | reply

      I thought it was CVS and an Office Depot. It was such a great building.
      Never have heard of Late Moderne. Moderne has curving edges, a defined cornice, and glass block, so what elements would Late Moderne have? I really like Clements term of "California Modern". This has elements of International with the canopy, the Roman brick, and the ribbon window. It almost seems like a precursor to Mid-century Modern as well with that stone around the entrance and the pylon sign.

    4. srk1941 63 months ago | reply

      I'm pulverized looking at this... it's miraculous! And GONE!

    5. jericl cat 63 months ago | reply

      Late Moderne, to my understanding, is what happened to Art Deco after WWII but before Mid-Century Modern. There are some broad elements of what would become the International style, but also a mixture of textures, copper framing, Roman brick, and flagstone for example, which would later be adapted in Mid-Century design.

      By the way, Clements called this the "California Style" of architecture because he brought in many outdoor elements into the interior design. Broad window walls let in the sunlight, but he also had flagstone planter boxes that wrapped from the exterior to the interior.

    6. ams11 63 months ago | reply

      great design!

    7. samh23 62 months ago | reply

      Beautiful. It was a Sav On until CVS took it over. They didn't even use those gorgeous front windows -- they were blocked off and you had to enter through the back, where the parking lot was. The number indicators on the clock were up but not the hands, if I recall. Either way, it was not functional. Heathens.

    8. ShakiraIsabel 61 months ago | reply

      It reminds me of the X-JC penny or Broadway store witch is now a shoddy WalMart in Van Nuys.

    9. jericl cat 61 months ago | reply

      Hmm, that might be the same architect. Stiles Clements was a genius of commercial architecture.

    10. da90027 58 months ago | reply

      If more of these buildings were properly maintained people would appreciate their beauty...but painting over windows etc just detracts from their style.

    11. jericl cat 58 months ago | reply

      There was so much of the original building left, but no one could see the beauty that was still there.

    12. glen.h 55 months ago | reply

      Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Vintage Modernism, and we'd love to have this added to the group!

    13. nlpnt 33 months ago | reply

      There needs to be a 30-year minimum between store remodels, IMO. Long enough for the original decor to pass through the "dated" phase and become at minimum retro-chic.

    14. ruskins 28 months ago | reply

      I agree that it was a beautiful building, and no doubt well built. Nlpnt's 30 year idea sounds good. I recall many places from the 50s that were still intact but getting shabby in the early 80s, when I was a kid, but which got destroyed within the following ten years before I got to photograph them. Too many people have no taste and can't see a buildings potential. Obviously all of us appreciate this stuff, maybe we should organize.

    15. hlb1933 27 months ago | reply

      My first job after high school graduation in 1950 I worked for Prudential Ins. at 5757 Wilshire just down the street from Mullen Bluett. In 1951 I was called into active service. I spent my time in Taegu Korea. On my return, my first day as a civilian I rode a bus west on Wilshire Blvd to catch a ride home from a friend at Pru. The Mullen-Bluett clock almost brought tears to my eyes. Home again. After my return I modeled some clothes for M-B. Those were wonderful days.

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