Sunday, September 29, 2013

Arion fasciatus slug, I think - look at this guy!

He (rather it) appeared on our sidewalk before church. S/he was still there when I got home, though had traveled across the sidewalk. S/he is huge, 4.5 inches when stretched out fully, and has the most gorgeous orange band right around the edge of his/her foot.

Friday, July 12, 2013

And now the ultimate in luxury luggage: A Hartmann wardrobe trunk, probably from about 1925.

Lost momentum there. I took my pictures for this post, then we had family visit and I forgot all about it.

Look at this baby:

It's a Hartmann top-of-the-line wardrobe trunk from probably about 1925. It would take a strapping porter to haul it around, as it weighs about as much as a smallish piano. And that's before you load it up. It's furniture.

But look at all the fittings inside! Hangers, drawers, and a removable case. Everything is engineered brilliantly to stay put when the trunk is on its side or upside down. The drawers and the inside of the trunk are lined with what I think is silk. The hardware is silvery colored. Here are more pictures.

This cloth curtain fastens over the hangers to keep dust off the clothes.

Cool wooden hangers.

This interesting gadget is a lever which is activated when you close the top on the trunk. It latches up the other latches. So you only have to manage one latch yourself. The trunk does the rest.

This is a thick plushy pad in the lid of the trunk to protect the clothes on hangers.

Here it is again.

The top drawer. Note how it's shaped to fit the contour of the top of the trunk.

This lever holds the drawers in place during shipping.

Faaaaaan - cy.

Not sure what this is for exactly. I doubt it's really a briefcase, though it looks like one. Socks? Ties? Collars? Handkerchiefs?

This is another view of that lever thingie, where the lid comes down and pushes it.

This is how it looks closed. 

Original owner's initials. I know who it is but am not saying as it's an old La Crosse family and I was asked by the person who sold this to me not to make a big deal of it. Not that they care about the trunk; they threw it away in a dumpster.

"Gibraltarized" apparently means "framed in steel so it's too heavy to move." Seriously. This baby is solid.

Right now the trunk is pretending to be a table in the living room. It's actually got a bunch of kitty litter in it right now because it smells pretty mildewy. Someday I need to replace the curtain thingie because it's got holes now. I just need to find some upholstery fabric that would coordinate with the silk on the drawers. 

I love this thing.

Cost was $20 at a moving sale. Wow.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

More vintage luggage used as storage: a Bar Harbor square case

I love this cutie pie. It's tall and boxy and shaped like no normal, self-respecting suitcase.

The tag is tiny, just an inch or so long, and reads "Bar Harbor by Dresner", with tiny pictures of a cruise ship, plane, train and auto.

I use this one to store handbags.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

More antique wardrobe trunks

I found another old wardrobe trunk last week. I will share some photos of it when I get some taken. It's pretty special. In the meantime, here are pictures of another that we have had for some while. I think I got it at an auction. It's a Hartmann Trip-Lex, meant for mass transit business travel, probably 1930s or 1940s vintage. It looks like this:

It comes apart in two sections. Just one latch holds it together and closed, but that latch does a great job because of the careful design.

The section shown on the bottom here is for hanging clothes, while the removable section is covered with a dust cover.

It came with wooden hangers. The metal bars on which the hangers are sitting extend so you can spread the hung clothes out to air once you are unpacking.

I use this trunk to store seldom-worn formal clothes. Here are 3 dresses on the hangers. There's a nice bar that clips in to hold them all in place.

On the other side, the dust cover unclips and folds back to reveal two folded-goods compartments with stabilizing ribbons.

Here are more of my too-fancy-to-wear-in-real-life clothes, tied neatly into the compartments.

Clip the dust cover back in place, and the trunk goes back together and latches.

Here's the Hartmann label. 

And here's my paper label so I don't have to open all my trunks to find what I need. We store out-of-season clothes and bed linens in old trunks, as well as music CDs and family pictures.

I'll post more of our trunks and old cases soon.

In the meantime, if you'd like to learn more about the Hartmann company, which is still producing wonderful luxe luggage today, click here for the company's history on its website. And to read about wardrobe trunks in general, with some great photos of different makers' work, click here.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

DIY Vinyasa Scarf from

Britta asked me to try making her this DIY version of the Lululemon Vinyasa Scarf  from Hammers & High Heels, which I did. I actually made two of them from the same piece of soft, flowy grey jersey knit, one for her and one for me, but I am afraid they are fragile, so I will give them both to her so she doesn't feel as bad if hers rips. See, after the fact I learned that the original uses snap tape, not snaps placed directly on the fabric, and just in playing with this one I am seeing that the snaps are going to pull right through that soft fabric. Next time I will track down matching snap tape.

Disappointing, because it turned out pretty!