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Tower Records 3-D “The Brian Setzer Orchestra” Advertisement!!!

Tower Records 3-D “The Brian Setzer Orchestra” Advertisement!!!

Today, we were over at our friends Mark & Kelly Skipper’s house (of the famed Overlook Tiki Lounge at Skipperworld Headquarters). We picked up a piece they had that we absolutely fell in love with. This three-dimensional advertisement was designed and painted by an unknown artist for Tower Records. When the shop closed they sold off the fixtures and one of Marks’ friends nabbed it. Mark later came into possession of it, and now us!

This piece is large. It measures 4ft by 5.5ft. We had a space open on our wall in the living room and it filled it perfectly!!! It may be difficult to see in the photos, but all the words, the hot rod and the dude are raised off the surface of the piece, creating a 3-D effect.

The hotrod is killer and the dude in the seat is just cruising!

We love the tikis behind him. The imagery of this piece is so bold and vibrant!

Thanks Mark & Kelly for such a fantastic piece! We will cherish it for many years to come.

Fiberglass Find!!!

Fiberglass Find!!!

This is the view of San Francisco seen from the fair.

Last weekend Mel and I decided to take a break from unpacking to attend the Alameda Point Antiques Faire. There have been very few times where we had such a successful haul as this faire. While cruising all the vendors we came across an amazing rhinoceros wall mount.

Don’t worry all you animal rights activists, this thing is made out of fiberglass! We purchased this from Bob & Bonnie of Alchemy Estate liquidations in spot M23.

They were so nice and just wanted to make sure it went to a good home. Our tiki room is quickly becoming a fiberglass game room!

We were so excited to get this. We missed out on a hippo a while back, so this makes up for it. We are on the hunt for more of these fiberglass wall mounts and hope to add more to the collection. We will share our other scores shortly.

Amazing Mid Century Couch and Chair Set

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Mel and I were driving home from a visit to our shop inside Midway Antique Mall. On the way home we glanced over on a side street and saw a mid century couch and chair set. We rapidly swung a U turn and drove back to the house that had them out front. We jumped out and could not believe how large the couch was. The colors were still vibrant on all the pieces and the upholstery had the really cool design, as you can see.

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While we were drooling over them the owner came out and said they were his mothers. She was the original owner and they were purchased while her husband was in the Air Force stationed at Travis AFB. When he died she moved into a trailer park and had it with her till her passing. You could see they were triggers for his memories of her and the years they were with her.

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Usually, when we place something in our shop, we like to stage it but the couch is so large we had to just place them in the room.

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Unfortunately, there are only material tags on these pieces. We could not find a designers/makers name.

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If you are in the market for an ultra cool living room set, you can check it this out in our showroom Midway Antique Mall.

Now Open!!!

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Hello all,

As you may have noticed, we haven’t blogged in a bit.  Mel and I have been hard at work setting up our new store inside Midway Antique Mall.  Mark and Ann, the owners of the mall,  offered us the opportunity to set up our own store inside the antique mall!

Hepcat Restorations @ Midway Antique Mall

5130 Madison Ave, Sacramento, CA 95841

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Here is the entrance to our new store.  Our official sign is still being made.  We should have it ready and hung in a week or two.

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In our new store, Mel and I will showcase things from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s.  As you can see, we have this lovely sectional made by Vladimir Kagan and it is in remarkable shape for being 40+ years old!

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You might remember this bar from an earlier restoration I completed.  This was made by the Tropical Sun Company.

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Here is a great set that some lucky customer will be the owner of.  The couch is a pinkish frieze fabric.  A pair of amoeba end tables and a boomerang coffee table with hairpin legs complete the living room set.  The dining table is super atomic with pink chairs and pink Formica w/ gray accents.  Also, as you can see, a few of our Carlo of Hollywood watercolors made it into the store…maybe more to come…

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Here is the hutch I recently restored where I added an aqua accent to the top cabinet.

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Here is the table & chair set I recovered with tiki style fabric with the pair of Plasto Hawaiian chalkware lamps I restored.

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We have a real love for all things mid century and this store is packed with many of the items we love.

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Love this Van Hoople painting above the hanging GE radio/phono.  The colors are soo cool!  We had on some Beach Boys while Mel and I were fine tuning the room.

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After so many days of working on the store, all we wanted to do was collapse on the couch and chill.  Our official launch will be on May 3rd.  We will have treats and refreshments on hand for anyone who shows up from 10am-2pm.  If you have the chance, swing in!

hcrbgts

Hepcat Restorations @ Midway Antique Mall

5130 Madison Ave, Sacramento, CA 95841

Weinberg Horse Lamp Repair

Here’s the lamp Stephen received after being assured it would be packed very well.

Stephen asked us to repair this rare Horse Weinberg lamp that he had been searching for. If you get a chance, check out his eBay store as he has a lot of really cool items. He was devastated when he opened the box and found that the base was broken. We know his pain all too well as we’ve received many chalkware/plaster lamps shipped to us broken/damaged. Unfortunately, we’re currently dealing with an issue with a cracked pair of Continental Art Company Trillium Flower lamps we purchased on eBay similar to the one we repaired for Camila and Matt.

Oh No!

The lamp is actually made of a terracotta type material. I was able to use the same technique I use to repair chalkware/plaster lamps. However, the material is very porous so I had to use a gel glue that wasn’t quickly absorbed into the lamp. I allowed a couple days for the glue to dry before I filled the break.

Base filled after a few days of drying in the sun.

The most difficult part of any lamp repair is the re-painting. It is very difficult to find an exact color match, especially with black. The slightest difference in the color sticks out like a sore thumb. It is amazing how many different variations of black there is, but we were able to find a pretty spot on match. What also made this repair especially difficult was trying to find an effective technique to duplicate the greyish striated design of the lamp. Mel typically does the detail work on the repairs and I think she did a great job duplicating the the design.

Base after filling and sanding.

It is really important to look at your pieces in different lighting. Take your piece outside in the sun, etc. to make sure the paint has full coverage of the piece.

Close up of repair.

Finished piece!

Reglor Chalkware Lamp Restoration- Heart Break and Rebirth

Melody and I had won a couple of lamp sets on Ebay that we had been trying to hunt down for sometime. Unfortunately when we received them they were in really bad shape. The green jester set was packed soo poorly and was busted beyond repair. I was able to file a claim and got our money back on that set but the issue wasn’t the money….it’s the idea that this fantastic set is now history and all it had survived from its birth counts for nothing because someone did not take the right amount of care to prevents its demise. Here is what arrived…

It broke my heart when I pulled these out of the box and there was more chalkware in the box than on the lamps.

The male figure appears to have gotten the brunt of the damage. I ended up just throwing these in the trash and that was hard to do for me. As you all know I restore things, but I couldn’t see any way to bring these back.

The next set that arrived damaged was the famous Reglor bullfighter lamps. These were going to be paired with our bullfighter Carlo’s. Unfortunately they would need repair first. Here is how they arrived…

The female bullfighter had a busted neck, waist and a large portion of her cape was broken off. The only damage to the male bullfighter was a busted neck.

To repair both of these lamps I used the same process that I blogged about earlier on the fairy lamp. Anyways after a few days of working on them and repainting them here is how they turned out.

They glow now.

It is amazing what stucco and glue can do.

His neck looks great!

These have been saved from the scrap heap. I am so glad they were able to be salvaged and will look great next to our Carlos.

Hawaiian Chalkware Lamps & Rewire

Mel and I picked these up at a local antique store and knew they would look fantastic in our Tiki room. As you can see from the before photo they were really dusty and needed some freshening up. Per my previous posts you know that I love to re-finish old lamps. These needed to be cleaned and repainted. I took a little creative license when it came to the repaint and I think they turned out great! Here is how they turned out:

Here she is. We were able to get these venetian shades but they were lime green and I knew that would look too strange so I painted them to match.

Here is the hula man. They both turned out well.

I even added facial features such as eyes, eyebrows and lips. When you redo a lamp don’t be afraid to add your own twist.

After both of these were re-finished I wasn’t comfortable with the “burn down my house” cord that was still attached to both. I decided to run over to Lowes to pick up a couple of lamp rewire kits so I would not have any worries when using these.

Required items: 1 faulty wired lamp, 1 rewire kit, cross tip and flat tip screwdriver & wire strippers/side cutters.

The first step is to dismantle the existing light assembly. I always recommend that you hang onto all pieces of the old lamp till you are done. These rewire kits you purchase are generic and sometimes the hardware doesn’t work with your lamp so you may have to reuse some of the cosmetic pieces.

Remove lamp harp, light bulb sleeve and shroud.

Next you need to disconnect the two wires connected to the light assembly.

Remove the rest of the hardware from the upper part of the lamp. Leaving just the wires sticking out of the top.

The next part is to cut the plug portion of the old cord off and push it through the base of the lamp so it can be pulled through the top of the lamp later. Now take the new cord and feed it through the base of the lamp (once the new cord is though the base tie a knot in the cord but make sure it’s loose so you can adjust it later) and twist the ends of the new cord together with the old cord. This will allow you to pull the new cord through the lamp when you pull the old cord out through the top. It is important that when you try to pull the new cord through the lamp that as you pull on the old cord you are pushing on the new cord.

Here you can see the new wire pulled through the lamp. Once you give yourself a little slack on top adjust the knot on the bottom to be tight against the base. The knot prevents the wire from getting pulled out if someone tugs on the cord.

I had to use the old base hardware but I was able to replace the harp holder and lower bowl for the bulb.

The next step is to re-attach the wires to the light assembly, slide cardboard insert over light assembly and then the metal sleeve and push the whole assembly into the light assembly bowl till it feels secure, it should lock/snap into place. Install the new harp and attach the lampshade and screw on the finial and you are all done. You just rewired a lamp! Not too hard huh?

Now I don’t have to keep the fire extinguisher handy when these are on.

Continental Art Company: Trillium Chalkware Lamp Restoration

Camila bled for her lovely lamp! Way to go!

Mel and I were approached by our friends Camila and Matt to repair their busted up Continental Art Company lamp. Ok, here is the story with this lamp…Camila saw a lamp just like this one but with different colors. She could not get that lamp out of her head so Camila made the ultimate sign of love……she got a tattoo of it on her forearm. A couple weeks later good fortune smiled upon Camila when she saw it online for sale for next to nothing. It had been broken in half, glued back together, and had lots of chalkware busted out and missing. I felt really good knowing Camila trusted me enough to fix her fantastic lamp. This lamp is so cool it will be hard to give it back. Mel and I debated on going into hiding to keep it…We could send pictures of it to them along its adventures (kind of like that gnome guy). But, anybody who loved this lamp enough to get a tattoo of it would track me down, steal my life, and take the lamp back. Thus, leaving Mel a widow.

Anyways, here is what we were dealing with when I got the lamp…

Here is the front with areas marked that need attention.

As you can see the back of the lamp appears to have taken a lot of damage.

The first thing to do was to fill all the cracks and areas that had missing material with spackle.

Here is the damage around the switch filled in.

After the DAP spackling dried I sanded it down and painted it.

After all the damage was filled and sanded I started to repaint the whole lamp. I used a semi gloss Valspar house paint. Mel and I shot over to Lowes to match the colors so we could make this lamp look like we didn’t change anything.

As you can see even with a complete repaint (yes, the entire lamp was repainted, everything) this lamp looks just like new and original. Mel even helped with some of the detail work!

As you can see the back of this lamp looks perfect and who could tell this lamp had previous damage?

Mel and I love the way the lamp turned out. I hope Camila and Matt love it too!

Here’s the final piece!

Chalkware Lamp Restoration-Continental Art Company Fairy

WHY!!!! Broken but not dead.

I thought I’d blog about how to fix a chalkware lamp. These lamps are also known as plaster lamps. I came across this at my friend Franks house. He received it from a friend of his but as you can see it had a major break to the base. I wasn’t sure I could fix it but I thought I would give it a try. I asked Frank if I could purchase it and he said “sure can” so I went home to start work.

Wow, it’s really bad looking isn’t it? Maybe if it faces the wall no one will notice.

The first thing that had to be done was glue the broken pieces back to the body of the lamp. I debated between a few different adhesives such as silicone, JB Weld or rubber cement. I though about the flexibility those adhesives have which would eventually cause the fix to fail. Then I remembered “Gorilla Glue“. This stuff is crazy good when gluing things together.

Glue of the Gods!

Once I managed to get the cap off the glue tube (they stick sometimes after use).  I started to glue the shards back to the lamp. You only need to hold the pieces in place for 30 seconds and they will hold. I wanted to make sure it dried so I let it sit for and hour before I started sanding.

Glue is holding like a champ!

I wanted to sand before I applied the filler to level out the surfaces.

The next step was to fill the gaps left from the pieces that were missing. I wasn’t sure what to use but then I remembered that  “DAP Spackling” was a chalky substance and would fill the gaps perfectly. This stuff is usually used to patch holes on walls but I had confidence it would work.

I applied that spackling in small amounts till I had all the gaps plugged.

Once all the gaps were filled I had to wait 4 hours before sanding or painting. I placed it out in the sun to help expedite the drying time. Once I got it into the light I realized that the fairy was very faded and I decided at that point I would have to paint it as well.

Catching some rays.

Once it was completely dry I sanded off the excess spackling. You want to sand it enough to when your finger slides over the surface it feels like there is no crack. Paint shows all faults so if this isn’t sanded completely flush it will show, trust me.

Smooth as a baby’s bottom.

Now time for the paint. I swung into Lowes and had some paint mixed. I ended up purchasing BEHR eggshell “Mountain Ridge” house paint. I would of tried to spray paint but that would be hard to control.

I had to paint the fairy and the base the same color. the cream color would of been very hard to duplicate because it had a spackled finish.

As you can see from the paint I am applying how faded the fairy was.

Once it was all painted it just needed to dry. House paint is kind of funny because you think you have a good coat and later you will find some spots that need touch up. As it sits now it looks great but maybe tomorrow I might have to do some touch up. So without further adieu here she is!

Where is the crack?! It’s gone!

I am very pleased with its repair and restoration. I will now have to shoot over to Meteor Lights to order a shade for it.

Inspiration

I was asked today if I get my decorating inspiration from the show “Mad Men”? I actually get my inspiration from whatever catches my eye. Mad Men tends to focus more towards mid-century modern and Hollywood regency style. I love what they do on that show and it all looks authentic and well thought out. They truly do a great job capturing the era. If you look at the rooms that I have decorated in our home you will see that a large part of it is art deco but we also have items from the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s. There are a lot of people who only buy pieces if there is a name on the bottom. I do not subscribe to that line of thought. If you approach collecting with this narrow sign there will be a lot of great pieces that you will miss.  Here is an example of our living room……

As you can see it varies in style but it all goes together (in my opinion).

In our diner we just went with what felt right. You can’t go wrong with retro metal signs. In this room the booths and the jukebox are the focal points so whatever I incorporated into the room just had to jive with that era and styling.

At the end of the day what you surround yourself with should make you feel good and happy.

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