Come see a gorgeous Southern Belle!

By The Blade is proud to return for a fourth consecutive season as the official front lawn designers of the Symphony Designers’ Showhouse.

Here are some historical notes on this wonderful home from the Kansas City Symphony Alliance:

“At the turn of the 20th century when 36th Street was the city limits, Kansas City began to expand southward into planned residential areas such as Hyde Park and its crown jewel, Janssen Place.  Between 1897 and 1917 Janssen Place attracted many wealthy individuals, many associated with the lumber and construction profession—thus its title “Lumberman’s Row.”

“Arthur Stilwell, the father of the Kansas City Southern Railway, was the developer of Janssen Place and placed rigid restrictions on the size, cost, and placement of the dwellings.  Outdoor wiring was buried instead of being carried on poles.  It was an outgrowth of the City Beautiful movement that inspired the parks and boulevard system.  The street is listed as an historic district by the Kansas City Landmarks Commission and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

“The house at #96 Janssen Place was built in 1911 by William C. Bowman, president of the W. C. Bowman Lumber Company, and his wife Catherine and was designed by Shepard, Farrar & Wiser.  It is a colonial revival style house with nineteen Doric cast iron columns arranged along the front porch.  The exterior is wide clapboards made of yellow pine, and all the interior trim is mahogany.”

For this historic Janssen Place residence, By The Blade married a creative blend of classical treatments and vibrant new colors to bring new life to this 104 year-old Kansas City masterpiece. The inviting front walk is bordered with precisely trimmed, all season, evergreen hedge rows.

Colorful annuals enliven the colonial-revival style mansion, providing contrast and visual interest. Offset by dark mulch, the bright, sharply-edged beds curve gently along the front walkways, complimenting the Showhouse’s classic southern architecture. Large, dramatic urns flank the front step, filled with floral bursts, while flowering ornamental trees accent the home’s nineteen cast iron Doric columns.

A benefit for the Kansas City Symphony, the Showhouse brings together the area’s best interior and outdoor designers to “make over” a home that has impressive architecture and local significance. It’s a wonderful way for you to see some of our city’s best local designers and craftspeople, showcased in a one-of-a-kind setting. We hope you can come visit and support our great symphony at the same time.

The Showhouse is open May 9 – June 7. To find your nearest ticket location, visit