Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Ghost Town

Now this is scary . . .
I took this picture through the window of the school house in Bodie, a ghost town in California about 80 miles south east of Tahoe in Mono County. Bodie was established as a mining town in the mid-1800's. Population grew to 10,000 at one point, then dwindled to around 700 by 1910. In 1932, when a fire destroyed all but 200 buildings, most of the town's remaining 100 residents left (leaving behind much of their belongings). Bodie became a state park in 1962 and is now in a state of "arrested decay" for your viewing pleasure.
They must have left in October as there were several jack-o-lanterns in the school house.
One home is open with the rooms roped off, but as for the rest, you must be satisfied to look through the windows. It truly is a fascinating place to visit.

Here are glimpses into the past: (Click on pictures for a larger view.)
Inside the school house.

Outside of the school house

One of the "nicer" homes

Can you imagine having to leave your sewing machine behind? How sad.

Most of these pictures were taken through the window with my camera lense up against the glass resulting in poor quality in some photos (like the one below).

Another sad sewing machine. I liked the bird cage.

Almost all of the homes had wall paper. In some, you could see several layers where the top layer was peeling off.

A child's booster chair in the kitchen. (This is the house you could walk into.)

Crib, bathtub and radio in this room

Close-up of the wall paper in the front room.

I think they used flattened out tin cans for siding.

Our friend, Richard, is holding up this building.

Hotel room. Most of the commercial buildings had this pressed tin wall covering. I would love to have a sampling of it.

Hotel kitchen with more pressed tin.
If you're in California, Bodie is definately worth a visit. If you would like to see more pictures, visit my Bodie flickr album

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Little Tour of my Studio

The previous owners of our home had two small children. The boy's room was painted with bright primary colored planes, trains and automobiles on all four walls. Because of the room's location, I decided this would be my studio.
First step was to paint a creamy pink color. My storage boxes wouldn't fit in the closet , so I took the doors off. (My husband, clever boy that he is, used the closet doors to make a new cupboard door in the garage.) I made a curtain out of a sheet, added some lace, and hung it with a tension rod.
You can click on the pictures for a larger view. *

Here's the "behind the curtain" shot:


I purchased two of these desks, a cradenza, hutch and filing drawer years ago from Scandanavian Designs. I previously painted this shelf black to match the desks but I'm thinking I'm going to paint everything that's black to off-white. Just tired of the black. Oh yes, and that chair has been re-upholstered three times. This last time, I made a quicky slipcover in off-white fleece and it looks terrrrrrible. I've even slipped a pillow case over the back. I'm thinking about a new chair anyway.
I bought this old 1950's Singer portable (that weighs about 30 pounds) at a yard sale a few years ago for $10. I love the apple green color. I use it to sew my bears. It's a workhorse that will last another 60 years, I expect.
I made the magnet board out of a piece of welder's sheet metal from Lowes and a frame from Michael's that I got half off and spray painted. Made the memo board on the shelf out of leftover valance fabric. I also do all my painting and paper craft work on this table.

I can't miss any of my HGTV shows or Project Runway just because I'm working on a project, you know.


I do all my sewing (other than the bears) on this Janome, which I also love. The window looks out onto my beautiful Japanese Maple and the front yard and with northern exposure, the lighting is just right for me. I'd love to paint the chair but it is occasionally used at the kitchen table and matches those chairs.

This is one of those chrome racks; practical but oh so ugly and industrial looking. So, I made it a pretty dress with tulle and ribbons and pretty buttons. I attached large paint stirring sticks all around the top with plastic ties (you know, like the ones they use for hand cuffs). Then I glued and stapled Velcro to them. I made two curtains and sewed Velcro around the top and attached them so that the opening is down the front with a 6 inch overlap.

And behind curtain number two. I have no patience when it comes to looking for things, so I've labled all my storage boxes too.

I got the boxes in the hutch at Target on sale and spray painted them. They were bright red before. I hung name badge holders on them which hold a bland business card. I write the contents of the box on the card. Otherwise, I'd be looking for things forever. The little cabinet next to the cradenza has now been painted three times. It's pale pink and green now. In fact everything in this room that is pink, green or off-white has been painted to be that color.
This is my fur rack. I designed it and my dad built it for me. It's really just two hinged "A" frames with dowels in between (ladder style). Fur is hanging on both sides, mostly fat quarters and one yard size pieces. My patterns are hanging from a belt holder ring thingy.
My larger pieces of fur (1.5 to 2 yard cuts) have overflown into the guest room next door. My cutting table is in here and the fur gets thrown from table to bed and back whenever I need to cut out fabric.
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