Well, Friday nights are usually a time for dates. Dinner. Movie. Clubbing. But while a large portion of the world spent last night out I spent mine at the Home Depot and Hobby Lobby. Then I spent my entire night creating art. Yep folks. My life is beyond exciting it’s probably hard for you to keep up!
Okay. To be fair the husband works at the Home Depot so besides shopping for tile I also got the chance to say hi to the man I see briefly in my home a few times a week.
So, last week as we started our bathroom demo we found a small treasure. Most people would not have been nearly as excited as I was. And I get that. But this house has not yeilded too many of them. She is what she is. But behind the soap dish in the bathroom was a wadded up old newspaper. Tam, our builder, had used it to fill the hole.
December 20, 1959.
55 years this paper had been hiding. There was nothing exciting about it. No great news happening on that day. It was a Christmas paper full of 1959 gift ideas from the Columbus Dispatch in Columbus Ohio. But I was giddy as all get out!
Some of my fellow retro-ites will get it.
I carefully unfolded it. It was in VERY bad shape. It ripped every time I touched it. One corner had a wad of dried plaster on it. I knew I could not save it. So I just read the ads. Giggled at the 5 digit phone numbers. The t.v.’s that were cutting edge in 1959. The women’s clothing ads.
I LOVED this graphic below and wanted to save it. The color. The font. It SCREAMS 1950’s to me:
My first thought was just to buy a few small vintage picture frames and put the paper behind a glass frame and put them around the bathroom as decor when it’s done. I mean, we are recreating a 1959 bath here anyway…But as my creative juices started flowing I decided to try something I have wanted to do since I was like 12. Decoupage. On canvas.
Could I make this old, yellowed, ripped paper into art?
Well. I was gonna try.
Stopped in Hobby Lobby and bought the following supplies:
It is important to note I had NO CLUE what I was doing. Really. I was completely winging it.
First step was finding the ads that I wanted to highlight.
And folks…It was VERY messy…Or maybe I am just messy. Either way, I had this glue stuff EVERYWHERE. LOL.
It looks like crap when its done. No. Really. I was like “What the hell did I do to this poor paper?”. Survives behind a wall for 55 years and I destroy it in seconds.
But then, I got up this morning to this beauty:
Okay. So it won’t be hanging in the Museum of Art any time soon, but, I LOVE IT! I really do! I think I will finish it with a clear coat protectant. And then this piece of art and history will go right back into the bathroom I found it in. To hopefully spend the NEXT 50 years!
You might notice that Lazarus and Glick’s furniture featured prominently in these ads. Both of these stores were Central Ohio landmarks. I grew up hearing all about them. If you had money, that is where you shopped. They were the fancy stores. So I did a little research this morning.
Both companies were headquartered here in Columbus Ohio. Both prominent Jewish families. My husband is Jewish.
So I now feel my finished piece of art is an awesome little insight in to the 1950’s Columbus scene. It represents my history of being a life long Ohio-an while also touching some on my husband’s Jewish connection.
I grew up about 30 miles south of Columbus Ohio. My small, hometown of Lancaster Ohio did not have a mall at that time. We had a Kresge’s and Woolworths and Fisher’s Big Wheel and that was about it. So to do any real shopping, we had to travel up to Columbus. It was an event. I can remember my mom bringing us to the Lazarus store in Downtown Columbus to see the Christmas display. It was quite the scene. Moving puppets, lights, etc.
Most people would have just tossed this paper as junk. Out with the old and in with the new. These are the same people that destroy pink bathrooms and rip out perfectly good kitchens to replace them with granite everything and stainless steel somethings.
I suppose if that’s your thing then more power to you. New things are exciting. Shiny. New. Yep. I totally get it.
But old? Well made? Still standing against all odds? Well, there is something to that too. And there is a small army of us that want to not only preserve that, but promote it!
As I go through my retro renovation. Merging the 1950’s with the 2000’s many people won’t get it. They won’t like it. And trust me. I do understand. This style is NOT for everyone.
But I am quite happy preserving what I can of the past. It makes me feel good. I can almost feel my house smiling.
This paper survived 55 years tucked away in that bathroom. I just didn’t fee right about removing it completely.
So here’s to another 55 years Columbus Dispatch!