They did it for the graham: Six gingerbread architectural masterpieces


The cultural contributions of noteworthy Los Angeles architects — Frank Lloyd Wright, Frank Gehry, Richard Neutra — is well documented in Hot Property.

The holidays, however, offer a chance to shift our admiration toward a group of up-and-coming designers working in the field of gingerbread, who trade in traditional home-building palettes of wood, glass and concrete for frosting, gumdrops and sprinkles.

Here are a few of our favorites this year:

Minimalist landscaping dots the perimeter of this midcentury modern-style gingerbread house. Set under a slanted roof, the geometric home is characterized by sleek, clean lines across the living spaces.

Period details such as clerestory windows brighten the interior, which is anchored by a floor-to-ceiling almond fireplace.

Baker Leah Karp, 39, created the elaborate gingerbread house as a project for her pastry class.

“We were supposed to build a gingerbread house and add at least two different pastry elements to it,” the stay-at-home mom from Prairie Grove, Ark., said. “It took me at least four class periods, so about 20 hours.”

The house has been a hit on Instagram — and with her three kids.

“They think it’s the coolest thing,” Karp said. “I’m looking at the gingerbread house now and they made some clay dragons and they put it on the roof. They love it.”

Steeped in the Romanesque architectural tradition of thick walls and sturdy pillars, this gingerbread house is set on coconut-laden grounds behind a peppermint fence in the Philadelphia Center for Architecture and Design.

A central spire and stained glass-style windows highlight the exterior, and licorice-lined arched ceilings pay homage to European cathedrals and abbeys.

Four candy cane columns frame the entry of this five-story gingerbread house in London’s Museum of Architecture.

Wide steps approach the building, which features an upper-tier lined with rose windows centered by a candy-topped rotunda.

Featuring airy living spaces with floor-to-ceiling windows on each level, this gingerbread house is accented by a frosted façade.

A second-story wraparound balcony overlooks the grounds landscaped with pine trees, and a private third-floor balcony provides additional views.

This dome-style home, which traces its roots back to early Mesopotamia, has a rose-windowed, arched doorway.

Thanks to a multilayered rotunda topped with a Santa hat, the cozy living space features high ceilings.


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More of a castle than a home, this construction features Kremlin-esque architectural flairs.

A driveway of wafers approaches the sweet citadel, and arched windows and balconies on the upper floors provide views of the colorful grounds. One watchtower is fortified by an icing-lined flying buttress.

Times staff writer Andrea Chang contributed to this report.