Posted by on February 2, 2013
The following are pictures of my daughter’s home in California. I thought sharing her collections of trip and trash … and California Kitsch might give you inspiration.
About three years ago when she and her husband and my two grand dogs moved into their new home in Clovis, I got a desperate phone call…the builder’s beige walls were making them all crazy and somehow this was now my problem. I suggested SW Wheat Grass … everywhere. My son-in-law doubted my sanity when he saw the color, but he, always the believer, took time from work and painted every wall. This Sherwin Williams color became a beautiful background for all their varied collections.
A few years years ago when my daughter complained about her girlfriend always wanting to go antiquing, I suggested an assortment of things for which she could shop, all of them colorful, quirky, textural and, best of all, fairly inexpensive. Suddenly with a goal in mind, antiquing became an obsession instead of a drudge. Now she is possessed by her collections of vintage trip and trash … Goofus glass … beaded purses … botanicals … dog pictures … and California travel kitsch. As she has found and added to her collections, we have personalized her home with vintage things that tell a story and make her home more interesting.
The powder room walls allowed a great opportunity to display a collection of California trip and trash, other times known as vintage memorabilia. The framed satin pillow tops from WWII give an over-sized element to the somewhat out-of-scale 9′ walls of this tall and narrow powder room. When we noticed the builder had glued the mirror to the wall we saw nothing but opportunity. We hung the few tiny California plates we had as the beginning of a frame, a new quest for my daughter began, and her “California Room” was christened.
Goofus glass was a cold press process used before 1930, meaning paint was applied to the back surface of the glass and was not fired. Naturally, the paint washed off, thus the name “Goof” soon became Goofus glass. My daughter’s husband calls it “Doofus” and has said, “NO MORE!” I have told her the same thing: “buy it only if it is unique.”
This vintage glassware collection adds red and gold elements and interesting texture to this room. A natural “go with” for the updated barkcloth seats of the dining room chairs.
The collection of botanicals shown on her dining room wall is her thirty-year-old college plant taxonomy assignment. Recently, when we were moving, I uncovered her beautiful collection of Kansas prairie grasses and wildflowers still in the press. It was great fun to see them again and read all the carefully written identifying labels. Framed, each at 15″x 21″, they make a stunning personal statement.
Thirty-year-old plant taxonomy assignment takes on a new life and becomes the focal point of her dining room.
A few years ago I was looking for something for a birthday. Checking with the proprietress of the Antique shop where I was looking around, I ask if she had any goofus glass that I might have missed, she said, “I don’t buy it since it is so ugly.” I asked about travel pillows from WWII. She said, “I don’t buy those since they are so ugly.” So it went for everything my daughter collects. California Kitsch??? ”No…no one ever wants that.” I am sure she thought I had the worst taste on the planet…maybe… but my daughter’s collections have given her many hours of antiquing pleasure, and each piece represents a memory.
A day spent at the Clovis Antique Fair yielded these chartreuse Gazelle lamps from the 50s. Obviously they need an upgrade on the shade…soon. For some reason we named them the Gezelles, maybe we hoped to convince my son-in-law they were the thing to have. He was a bit incredulous, but a good sport none the less.
Several sweet, old-fashioned dog pictures are displayed in the very tall area above her cabinets.
Dog family picture circa 1900. She has several of these pictures, they all tell some story about the dog family, and generally show the mother and puppies in some sort of mischief. They are increasingly hard to find, but are usually under $20. A great “look for” when antiquing. This particular piece was a Christmas gift to my daughter from my sister’s husband. It had hung in his grandparent’s home in the 1920s.
Obviously, this home has nothing on it’s walls but personality. The following gallery of pictures are of assorted other pieces of her collections.
From these pictures it looks like my son-in-law has no say in the displays around their home and nothing to contribute. In actuality, my daughter had to start to collect to keep up. The office walls, which we have not shown, are covered with his mountain climbing conquests and a very long hallway, which we call “the gallery,” showcases his family history in lovely family tree charts and framed records. These treasured family history pieces, a gift from his mother, represent nearly fifty years of her dedication to genealogy. Another bathroom which we call “The Virgin Bath,” showcases many quite old pictures of his various family members in their clerical dress.
Even though this post would make you think I can not appreciate negative space, and that I recommend covering every available inch with something, this is not at all true. I just hope seeing these pictures of my daughter’s home helps you realize how fun interesting collections can be and what pleasure their acquisition and display can bring.