A Newly Built Home with an Old Soul in Galveston
Christine Plum sums up the homes that she designs and builds in two words–“Livable Art”–and it’s an apt description of this Galveston bungalow. Through her firm, Plum Construction, the designer and builder focuses on small-scale projects in Galveston and Houston, and is known to weave in unexpected touches via original art and antique finds. “Plum Construction is building unique, beautiful, high design homes using craftsmanship from days past,” Plum told ShoutoutDFW. “I want people to see that a single mom is a builder, working to turn new construction on its head. I’m not building anything ordinary, or for the masses.”
Consider this unique 1327-square-foot bungalow that Plum finished late last year. From the exterior, it fits well with the rest of its block in looks and scale, with its Craftsman aesthetic and cheery teal siding contrasting pleasantly with the expressed wood beams tucked under the porch roofline and a pink front door.
Inside, find nicely proportioned living spaces, with ten-foot-high ceilings, exposed beams overhead, and lots of light pouring in through the wood windows, which might look vintage but are modern energy efficient units. Handmade Saltillo floor tile extends from here into the bedrooms and baths, unifying the plan and supplemented by a sumptuous paint palette from Farrow & Ball.
Plum peppers antique finds throughout, instilling character that can be hard to come by in new construction, and artful moments in every room, from the living room’s mantle, salvaged and repurposed from a historic house on the island, to the bathroom vanities and vintage decorative lighting, such as the bedroom ceiling fixture customized from an original clock from the 1968 World’s Fair in San Antonio.
The eat-in kitchen is a striking centerpiece, starting with its wide doorway framed in antique European glass doors and salvaged long leaf pine window trim. In it, custom cabinetry and open shelves, leathered marble countertops, and beadboard wrap the perimeter. Old world touches blend seamlessly, like the sideboard crafted from a card catalogue—such a perfect piece for storing kitchen tools and odds and ends—the deep travertine farmhouse sink, and the antique cypress table for prepping or dining. Over it, hangs a custom light sculpture from Houston artist Kelley Devine, an imaginative accent that syncs with the original mural painted by Plum in the powder bath.
The three bedrooms all have built-in storage and their own handmade or vintage lighting picks, with the primary suite drenched in a lovely shade of terracotta and with an antique arched door leading to the en-suite bathroom.
In the backyard, the 224-square-foot “casita,” complete with a kitchenette and full bathroom so it can be used for potential extra income, received the same considered attention. It also includes the Saltillo tiled floors, vaulted ceilings, and its own vintage flair, like the salvaged wood kitchen counter from Galveston’s 1877 ELISSA tall ship.
Listing Fast Facts
Address: 4010 Ursuline St, Galveston, TX 77550
Size: 1,550 square feet/4 bedroom/3.5 bath (including 1327-square-foot main house, and 224-square-foot “casita”)
List Date: 12/15/2022
List Price: $695,000
Listing Agent: Debbie Levine, Martha Turner Sotheby's International Realty