Frank Shell House


The house was featured on the front page of the Oregonian newspaper’s Homes and Rentals section.

Here is a collection of pictures after the restoration was completed: 

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August 25, 2011

I just met with Monica Setziol-Phillips, Leroy Setziol’s daughter and an accomplished artist in her own right.

Here is what she had to say about the incredible Redwood front door that came off the Shell house: “This door was probably done in the late 60′s, very early 70′s. That’s when he did a number of doors. All of the grids (carvings) are the most desirable of all his carvings… It’s in great shape, it really is.”

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The door is available for purchase for: $15,000.


This home really has transformed since I started the project.  The end result is truly amazing.  I wish I could claim all responsibility for how great the house feels inside, but it is Frank Shell, the architect and longtime resident of the home that created this modern masterpiece.  I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to keep his design alive.

A couple days after I finished working on the house I received an email from Nickie Shell, Mr. Shell’s oldest daughter. She wrote: “you did a great job of restoring this house.  why does it matter to me?  I am the oldest daughter of Frank Shell, and invested a lot of sweat equity there when my parents and my sister and I worked on this house.  I am so thankful that someone with integrity recognized the potential of this house and brought it back to life.

I am truly honored that Nickie (and her daughter Kate) contacted me to let me know how they appreciate the quality of the restoration.  Here are some photos of the house while it was being built and in during the “Shell family years”.

The Home:
The Frank Shell family home was originally built in 1960. The home features original teak woodwork throughout, three atriums, and dramatic “saw-tooth” roof-line. Primarily a public/educational project architect, Frank Shell created his home as a showcase of a unique form of “pinch and open” relationship between space and light, creating a naturalistic yet modern placement for a family burrow. Rooms are exposed to light through one or more complete glass walls, oversize windows, and numerous skylights which compliment nearby atrium rooms.
Located within walking distance to the warm and family friendly Multnomah Village, this home offers authentic mid-century living with the advantages of 20th Century efficiency.
When I walked into the house it immediately spoke to me as a unique example of modern architecture. Even on a dreary winter day, it instantly transported me to the bright outdoor culture reminiscent of the Case Study Homes of Southern California (1945 -1966). Here in Portland, there are so many great examples of mid-century modern homes, but this one, more than others I’ve been into, really blurs the lines between inside and out. This is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for me, as it is a one of a kind property. My goal with this project is to update the functionality of the space while respecting Shell’s design aesthetic.

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About Frank Lawrence Shell, Historic Register Architect
Frank Shell received his degree in architecture from Washington State College. He moved to Portland Oregon in 1949 and began to work with two partners, Jonathan Farnham and Charles Hoyt, creating the firm Farnham, Shell and Hoyt.
Frank Shell deceased in late 2006, at the age of 86.

Public Works of Frank Shell and Associates

American Institute of Architecture biography listings for 1962:

·Reed College Dorm Cross Canyon Residence, Architecture firm of Farnham, Shell & Hoyt

·National Register of Historic Places and recipients of the AIA Oregon Chapter Merit award.

·Crawford Office building 1961, worked in conjunction with landscape architect David E. Thompson

·Estacada High School, Estacada Oregon

·Oakridge High School, Oakridge Oregon

Public Works of Frank Shell

American Institute of Architecture biography listings for 1970:

·Camp Arrowhead Wind Mt Girl Scout Camp

Tabor Heights United Methodist Church, Portland Oregon