digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

No detail too small

As was the case with many aspects of the Miller House design, no detail was overlooked as unimportant in the plans for the garage folding gate - even the gate’s lock. In the first Ornamental Iron Work Co. blueprint from January 31, 1956, the hand-written annotation reads:

"Please clarify with a cut or a more discriptive (sic) drawing, the locking methods proposed. Cylinder locks are specified, the cylinder furnished by the hardware contractor & installed by this contractor."

By April 4, 1956 the Ornamental Iron Work Co. issued a second iteration of the gate blueprint, complete with a detailed drawing of the gate’s locking mechanism. Truly no detail was too small.

Blueprint (24 1/4 x 36 in.) of Miller House Garage Folding Gate Lock Detail by Ornamental Iron Works Co., 31 January 1956,  FF82, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IIId_FF082_008)

Blueprint (24 x 36 1/8 in.) of Miller House Garage Folding Gate by Ornamental Iron Works Co., 9 April 1956,  FF82, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IIId_FF082_013)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

No Detail Too Small
This page is from a binder of material samples that served as a reference source for remodeling and other upkeep at the the Miller House. We shared another page from the binder a few weeks ago. The description of this textile sample gave us a laugh and we wondered if Mrs. Miller ever found the lining material she was looking for… 
Textile sample of  (2.5 x 4 in.) of white lining material taped to sheet of binder paper, 13/86, Miller House and Garden Collection, IMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVa_B086_f013_006)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

No Detail Too Small

This page is from a binder of material samples that served as a reference source for remodeling and other upkeep at the the Miller House. We shared another page from the binder a few weeks ago. The description of this textile sample gave us a laugh and we wondered if Mrs. Miller ever found the lining material she was looking for… 

Textile sample of  (2.5 x 4 in.) of white lining material taped to sheet of binder paper, 13/86, Miller House and Garden Collection, IMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVa_B086_f013_006)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Summer Pit Pillows

In honor of the sneak peek of spring weather we’ve had over the last few days, we offer a sneak peek of the new textile series we will be featuring this spring and summer. We’ve shared the winter conversation pit pillow textiles and are now prepping posts that include samples of the textiles used for the spring and summer conversation pit pillows. The biannual “flipping of the pit,” where the winter textiles are rotated out for the spring and summer seasons, will be completed in late April. You can read a post about this process on the Indianapolis Museum of Art Blog: Pillow Talk.

Textile samples (11.5 x 11.5 in.) of light brown with white, red and black stripe (Item No. 86-5); red (Item No. 86-3); and cream (Item No. 86-4) from Pan American Shop for summer Living Room Conversation Pit Pillows. Beige cardstock is stapled to upper left corner of samples. Notes on cardstock identify samples for space 6-C6 (Living Room). Samples sourced by Alexander Girard, 1955-1957, 94/96, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVi_B094_f096_003-005)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Master Bedroom bedspreads

Eye-popping textiles were not limited to the draperies and conversation pit pillows at Miller House. Mr. and Mrs. Miller’s bedspread sported another one of Alexander Girard’s bright textiles for Herman Miller: Gemstones. The orange and pink brocade textile was used for the top of the bedspread, and the orange Siamese silk was used for the lining.

Textile samples (11.5 x 11.5 in.) of Herman Miller orange and magenta “Gemstones” (#188) by Alexander Girard and orange Siamese silk (P-238-A) from Far Eastern Fabrics, Inc. Pink cardstock is stapled to upper left corner of samples. Note on cardstock identifies sample as Item No. 156 for space 21-C2 (Master Bedroom). 62/91, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana.  (MHG_IVk_B091_f062_001-002)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Master Bathroom curtains
In our post last Friday, we shared a page from a materials reference binder that was kept for Miller House. On the page, a small piece of this fabric is taped to a notecard, identified as the “curtain fabric for the master bath” and annotated by Alexander Girard. Also included on the page are threads from the rug and manufacturer’s tag for the glass curtains in the master bath. These are more examples of the astounding amount of documentation that went into every aspect of this home.
Textile sample (11.5 x 11.5 in.) of red and purple plaid Cambaya (#22) from Bruce Rogers Fabric. Pink cardstock is stapled to upper left corner of sample. Note on cardstock identifies sample as Item No. 63 for spaces 24-C1 (Master Bathroom). 63/91, Miller House and Garden Collection, IMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVk_B091_f063_002)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Master Bathroom curtains

In our post last Friday, we shared a page from a materials reference binder that was kept for Miller House. On the page, a small piece of this fabric is taped to a notecard, identified as the “curtain fabric for the master bath” and annotated by Alexander Girard. Also included on the page are threads from the rug and manufacturer’s tag for the glass curtains in the master bath. These are more examples of the astounding amount of documentation that went into every aspect of this home.

Textile sample (11.5 x 11.5 in.) of red and purple plaid Cambaya (#22) from Bruce Rogers Fabric. Pink cardstock is stapled to upper left corner of sample. Note on cardstock identifies sample as Item No. 63 for spaces 24-C1 (Master Bathroom). 63/91, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVk_B091_f063_002)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

No Detail Too Small

Here is a document to revive our series highlighting the quirky bits of minutiae that populate this vast collection. Taped to this black piece of construction paper in the top image are tags from the Alexander Girard-designed Herman Miller “Linnet” textile (bottom image). This textile was used for glass curtains in the kitchen, laundry room and bedrooms at the Miller House. The note card looks a bit like a piece of assemblage art, with samples of the master bathroom curtains and yarn from the master bathroom rug held in place with tape. One of the annotations that can be seen on the card is in Girard’s hand, signed with his initials, AHG. This construction paper page was included in a binder full of material samples that served as a reference source for remodeling and other upkeep at the the Miller House.

Red yarn, carpet sample for master bathroom (13/86) and sample of Herman Miller “Linnet” (#680) by Alexander Girard (17/86), Miller House and Garden Collection, IMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVa_B086_f013_007, MHG_IVa_B086_f017_001)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Maid’s room textile combination by Alexander Girard

Even the maid’s room at the Miller House was treated to Alexander Girard’s color-scheming genius. His textile design “Hexagon” for Herman Miller was printed in a custom color combination and used as curtains in the room. The bottom textiles were used for the bedspread. The textile on the bottom left, “Hennesex” by Greeff Fabrics, served as the bedspread cover, while the green & black Indian madras from Far Eastern Fabrics was used for the bedspread lining.

Textile samples (11.5 x 11.5 in.) of turquoise “Hennessex” (#121002) from Greeff Fabrics; green and black Indian madras from Far Eastern Fabrics, Inc.; Herman Miller “Hexagon” designed by Alexander Girard, in special colors. Hexagon pattern in blue and green is printed on Herman Miller Fortisan (#167) designed by Alexander Girard. 59/91, 60/91, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVj_B091_f059_001-002, MHG_IVj_B091_f060_001)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Hasta la vista in New York…

While the correspondence in this collection is crucial to understanding the design processes of Alexander Girard, Eero Saarinen and the Millers, it also provides a glimpse into the personal relationships these kingpins of modern architecture and design, and their patrons, had with one another. In this letter, “Sandro” details an upcoming furniture shopping trip that he and Mr. Miller took in New York. Big names like Herman Miller, Knoll, and Laverne all made the list of places to stop. We especially love the way Girard ends this letter to Mr. Miller.

Alexander Girard to J. Irwin Miller, 9 September 1954, 1/2 Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_Ia_B001_f002_075-076)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Master Planting Plan by Dan Kiley

This blue line drawing is of the Miller House & Garden master planting plan by Dan Kiley. The photo from the Indianapolis Museum of Art shows one of the garden’s most noted features: the Honey Locust allée (Allée is French for, “a walkway lined with trees or tall shurbs.”) on the west side of the house. You can see the allée illustrated as a line of dots and overlapping circles, indicating where trees were to be planted, on the left side of the drawing.

Revised blueline (29 5/8 x 30 3/8 in.) of Miller House Landscape Master Planting plan by the Office of Dan Kiley, 26 November 1957,  FF56, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IIIb_FF056_005)

digitizingmillerhouseandgarden:

Cutout by Alexander Girard for Herman Miller

The Alexander Girard-designed textile for Herman Miller, “Cutout” was used for curtains in the Miller House master bedroom and study area. Photographer Leslie Williamson also managed to capture this one in situ for a 2011 feature on Miller House in Dwell.

Textile sample (11.5 x 11.5 in.) of Herman Miller “Cutout” (#638) designed by Alexander Girard. Cutout pattern in grey, purple, orange, and gold is printed on poplin. Pink cardstock is stapled to upper left corner of sample. Note on cardstock identifies sample as Item No. 61 for spaces 21-B1 (Master Bedroom) and 22-B2 (Study). 63/91, Miller House and Garden CollectionIMA Archives, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, Indiana. (MHG_IVk_B091_f063_001)

to archivate (v.) to save old crap so we aren't doomed to repeat history

view archive