Creede America: Land of Small, Stylish Houses

On a sunny mesa, above the little mountain town of Creede, Colorado, a neighborhood is taking shape and a town is growing. Not only are multiple new homes under construction in Creede America, a walkable neighborhood in a walkable town, new residents are contributing to the growth of this once-booming silver mining town.

Photo by Scott Hizny

For Avery Augur, Creede America’s founder and design director, the neighborhood is just another way to enhance the development of a strong and thriving community. Honoring the integrity and charm of the town’s building stock, Augur is designing homes that reimagine the traditional vernacular of western mining towns in fun and functional ways.

Photo by David O. Marlow

Like Augur himself, there’s a spark of playfulness in each of the houses he designs. Whimsy is at the heart of his design sensibilities, whether it’s in bright yellow window trim or the metal clad “Tower of Power” office/garage. Augur says about the newly finished “Bluebird," a modern, two-story, 1,800 square foot, 3-bedroom house, clad entirely in cobalt blue tin, “There are these funky old tin shacks all over Creede. Tin was cheap and people would patch it together to make a shed. I thought it would be fun to take this common building material, which now comes in great colors, and elevate it from shack to chalet, and the client was game for it.”

Photo by David O. Marlow

This is no folly architecture, for if fun is at the heart of his designs, function is the soul of them. Because the homes have a small footprint, Augur is determined that every square foot is purposefully and carefully considered to give each homeowner a space that is immensely livable. Meticulous about details, Augur is attentive to proportion, insistent that homes take advantage of the spectacular views and are responsive to the site and neighbors.

Photo by David O. Marlow

With lot sizes ranging from 5,000 square feet to half an acre, Augur says, “I tell potential clients, ‘You’re going to have neighbors, and they’re going to be close. You’re going to have a great front porch, where you can sit drinking your coffee in the morning sun, and your neighbors will probably stop by and say hi as they walk their dog. And, you’re also going to have a back porch, that’s private and intimate and catches all the western evening light.’” And for those people who aren’t sure they’re ready to live in 850 to 3,000 square feet, Augur says, “It can be an adjustment, but when you’re surrounded by 96 percent national forest, who really needs a big house?”

Categories: Interiors