In these days of shrinking endowments, museums have to do what they can to make a buck. In the case of Delaware’s Winterthur Museum, that means endorsing a new line of pre-engineered houses from Vermont company Connor Homes.
The Winterthur estate, designed by antiques collector and horticulturist Henry Francis du Pont, now houses one of the country’s most prized collections of Americana. According to Connor’s press release, the design inspiration for its new line of homes will come from the museum’s archives and from interpretations of the estate’s architecture, which is based on that of 18th- and 19th-century English manors.
Endorsements are nothing new for Winterthur: The estate’s Licensed Products division has put its stamp of approval on sundry home furnishings, allowing it to maintain the museum and its educational programs. We’ll be interested to see the house plans when they’re rolled out this summer, but even more interested to see if architectural endorsements are the next big trend in home design … not to mention museum solvency.