Friday, October 30, 2015

Mom on Halloween

There was a time when my Mom made an effort at Halloween. She helped us fashion costumes every year for trick or treating. She and Dad went to Halloween parties and dressed up. Usually, she used something that she had on hand and added a few elements to make it into a costume. Here's Mom in 1957 at a Halloween party. She and Dad had recently returned from a trip to Mexico, so they wore sombreros and serapes over white "peon" clothes.
Mom in sombrero and serape, 1957
There were other parties where Mom dressed as a 1920's bathing beauty in one of those ridiculous outfits with bloomers, a sweater and a little gingham hat. Wish I could find that photo! I remember my Dad dressing as an Arab one year! He borrowed one of my grandfather's long night shirts and fashioned a head-dress out of a dishtowel!  That went over great in our predominantly Jewish neighborhood!  Hah!
Lately, Mom is not interested at all in anything remotely having to do with Halloween. Here she is, sitting at Dinah's Restaurant, completely oblivious to the scary goblins hovering over her....two years in a row!!

Mom at Dinah's, October 2014
Mom at Dinah's, October 2015

Speaking of Halloween in the neighborhood, I look forward to Saturday night! We're going to the Witch's House in Beverly Hills to help pass out candy to the hoards of kids that mob this historic home!  I'll be dressed as the witch, of course!
Michael Libow's Witch's House, Beverly Hills

Labels: , , , , , ,

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Some Places Never Change

Chapman Market, 1929

Thankfully, some beautiful buildings in Los Angeles never change. This is the case of The Chapman Market on Sixth Street at Alexandria in the Wilshire District, also known as Korea Town.
Chapman Market, 2013, Photo by Michael Juliano

Chapman Market's architectural style is Spanish Revival. It opened in 1929 as one of the first drive-through grocery stores. The central courtyard was set aside for parking. 

 All black and white photos, 1929, Security First National Bank Collection, 
LAPL Photo Archives

The architectural firm of Morgan, Walls & Clements designed Chapman Market, for land developer Charles Chapman (Chapman University, O.C.). By the 1980s, this group of buildings had fallen into disrepair. Developer Wayne Ratkovich restored the center in 1989 to it's former beauty. Instead of produce and groceries, the individual shops are now home to restaurants, bakeries, karaoke bars and specialty stores, catering to a mostly Korean clientele. 
Chapman Market, 2008, photo by Mike Schneider

I absolutely LOVE this historic building in our beautiful City. I'm so glad that it is still in use!

Labels: , , , , ,

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


Ellen's Eyelet Lace Shawlette

I finished knitting the Eyelet Lace Shawlette by TemptingEwe Designs. Carol gave me this colorful sock yarn for my birthday. The yarn is Twist's "Heavenly." The colors are lovely, but because of the intense variegation, I didn't want to knit too busy of a pattern. I looked and looked at shawl patterns on Ravelry and found this one. Perfect!  This is a simple stockinette pattern with tiny, lace eyelets every few rows...excellent pattern for TV knitting.

I will definitely use the pattern again. It looks great in a solid color yarn, self-striping yarn and of course, variegated! Check out some other versions of this pattern:
TemptingEwe's Shawlette

BlueLightening's Shawlette

Annie1970's Shawlette

Thanks for the inspiration, Carol!

Labels: , , , ,

Friday, October 23, 2015

Costume Inspiration

Youngsters will not understand these!

I'm all set with my Halloween costume this year. However, I thought you might need some inspiration! I searched the web and found some fascinating vintage costumes!

1962. Valley Times, Los Angeles

Must be a party at the Bridge CLUB!

Artsy SciFi Fun


I'm attracted to the costumes where people dress in normal clothes and add some sort of crazy mask!  I'm not sure what some of these are, but I like them! 

Watch out for the leering Squash Giant!

Steer clear of Lankershim and Magnolia, NoHo. There's a giant black cat infestation!
1955. Valley Times. LAPL Photo Archives

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, October 22, 2015

License to Snap

I like to snap shots of vanity license plates around Los Angeles.  Here are two, recently seen:
 Oh, those wacky Germans!
Bubbe was right!


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Witchy Woman

The Poison Apple Scene from Disney's "Snow White"

I have THREE Halloween parties to attend this year. The first one is for the West Hollywood Stitch 'n Bitch yarny party. This year's theme for the Stitch 'n Witch Spooktacular is "Monster Mash-Up." This means our costumes will be a mash-up or mixture / fusion of disparate elements.  For example:  Horror + Classic Literature = Pride & Prejudice & Zombies. Another one, Horror + History = Abe Lincoln Vampire Hunter. As our cruise director, Ms. Natalie of Hollywood explains, "this category is wide open for creative interpretation. Use songs, nursery rhymes, literature, history, movies, television, pop culture or whatever inspires you to make the most mashed-up costume ever!"  My costume is under wraps until the big reveal on Thursday, October 29th. Join in the fun at the Original Farmers Market, 7-9 pm, upstairs dining area.
My other two parties are at private homes.  I'm going classic Halloween for these two. One is a Disney-themed party. I've decided to be Snow White's Evil Witch...not the Glamorous one, but the comfortably-cloaked ugly witch!
Snow and the Witch
My witch costume may be a bit of a mash-up too. I'm not going for the ugly nose and chin of Snow White's Witch. I like the hat and green make-up of Margaret Hamilton's Wicked Witch character from the movie, "Wizard of Oz" better than Snow's pasty witch. I've also crocheted some poison apples as props.
Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch Witch of the West
My witch costume will work perfectly for the final party, actually on Halloween. I'll be at the Witch's House in Beverly Hills handing out candy to the 5,000 kids on the sidewalk!  When I was a kid our parents would drive us over to this very same historical home to trick or treat. The lady of the house always dressed up like a witch and handed out candy. I feel this is an appropriate costume and homage for the venue. Photographs will be taken.
Poison Crocheted Apple

Labels: , , , , ,

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Tudor Revival Architecture - Los Angeles

Waverly Mansion, Beverly Hills, 1927. Mark Wanamaker Archives

The "Revival" architectural movement in Los Angeles was prevalent between the World Wars. There is an excellent article on these styles in the Lafayette Square Preservation Plan written in 2008.  Here is a description of this type of architecture,
The period between the World Wars was one of intense building activity in Los Angeles, and a wide range of revival styles were built in the area during this period. The Eclectic Revival styles popular in Los Angeles between the First and Second World Wars include the Colonial Revival, Dutch Colonial Revival, Spanish Colonial Revival, Mission Revival, French Eclectic, Chateauesque, English and Tudor Revival, Italian Renaissance Revival, Mediterranean Revival, Neoclassical Revival, Egyptian Revival, Monterey and HispanoMoresque styles. The Craftsman and Craftsman Bungalow styles continued to develop as popular styles through this period. Many of these styles were popular both as residential and commercial styles, with a few, particularly the Egyptian Revival and Chateauesque styles, being particularly popular for use in small and large scale apartment buildings. All of these styles were based on an exuberantly free adaptation of previous historic or “foreign” architectural styles. The Los Angeles area is home to the largest and most fully developed collection of these styles in the country, probably due to the combination of the building boom that occurred in this region in the 1920s and the influence of the creative spirit of the film industry. 

Did you ever wonder why so many English "Tudor" style buildings are in Hollywood and communities nearby?   Gustave Heully discusses this phenomenon here. There's the Villa Nova Restaurant (Rainbow Bar and Grill) on Sunset, discussed here by my friend, Alison Martino on her blog "Vintage Los Angeles." Charlie Chaplin Studios (Henson Studios) on La Brea is another example of this style. There are countless more examples all over the City.
The driveway at Waverly

The Grotto and Gardens

On Saturday we had a chance to visit a well-preserved Tudor style home in Beverly Hills, Waverly Mansion. The Los Angeles Conservancy held their annual gala on the grounds of the home. We were given access to tour the grounds and limited access to a few rooms inside the house. 

"Charlie Chaplin" came to the party!

The "Grotto" Room

The exterior of this home looks virtually the same as it did when it was built in 1926. There have been renovations and re-creations inside the home, slightly over-the-top, in a more Gothic Revival style.  Waverly Mansion is at the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Hillcrest Road. Beverly Hills. It is Historic Landmark designation number 9. The home was commissioned by silent film era producers, directors and screenwriters Charles and Al Christie.
When I was a young teen, we lived a few blocks south of this home. One of my school friends lived in the house (1950-1972) with her family. I was lucky enough to play tennis on the court at Waverly Mansion with my friends during these years.  It was wonderful to visit again and relive those memories.
Where's my racquet?

Labels: , , , ,

Monday, October 19, 2015


I'm co-chair for the Knit-A-Long (KAL) and Crochet-A-Long (CAL) Committee of the El Segundo Slipt Stitchers Guild. This past weekend we revealed our last KAL-CAL of 2015. We're making toys!
My Co-Chair, Lenora and I suggested a few patterns, with the help of some other members. Of course, people can make ANY toy they want for this challenge. The goal is to have tons of toys to show at our December holiday party meeting. The toys can be made in miniature to decorate a tree for the season or as a gift for others. I'm really looking forward to this challenge.
Here are our suggested patterns:
Scooped by Marcie Nishioka, ice cream Cones 
Owl Puffs by Jenna Krupar
Granny Square Kitty Cat Softie by Julie Harrison 
Easy-Peasy Teddy Bear by Raphaela Blumenbunt 
Dog Buffy by LittleOwlsHut

Labels: , , ,

Friday, October 16, 2015

Third Thursdays on Pico

Third Thursdays on Pico

I almost NEVER miss my Thursday night WeHo SnB (West Hollywood Stitch 'n Bitch) at the Original Farmers Market. HOWEVER, last night the Yarnover Truck was scheduled to be at Third Thursdays on Pico, which is my neighborhood's stroll night at the local shops and restaurants. 
The Third Thursdays on Pico event has been going on for about a year and I'd never been. I did feel a bit guilty for not attending. I do like to support my 'hood. The Yarnover Truck lured me. 
When I drove home from work, before turning into our street, I drove down Pico. The event was supposed to be between Cochran and Fairfax.  NOT. Most of the food trucks and open shops were in the two blocks between Hauser and Burnside. There were two food trucks and a shaved-ice truck. There was a live band, street vendors and many of the shops on the south side of Pico were open. I didn't notice any shops or restaurants open on the north side of the street. We didn't get there until around 7:15 and it was sparsely populated. I'm thinking that this event would be better in the summer when it stays light later in the evening. 
Brenda at the Yarnover Truck

The Yarnover Truck was right in front of 5352 W. Pico Blvd. which was the home office of Aladdin Records at one time. This is a nice courtyard-style building with several offices, designed by architect Gregory Ain. It would be great to see this building restored to it's post WW II design. I'm still waiting for more gentrification and less car repair spots along my Pico Blvd.
5352 W. Pico Blvd., the home of Aladdin Records!

I met up with Brenda and we visited with the ladies at the Yarnover Truck. Yes, I bought some yarn that I do not need. My West Adams Knitters buddy, Dommy and her husband Patrick were coming down the block as we left the Yarnover Truck. 
Brenda and Ellen inside the Yarnover Truck

Patrick and Dommy on Pico

We also ran into our neighbors, Kim and Don at one of the many retro furniture shops on Pico. Larry and I ventured west and checked out a few more shops. We ended up having dinner at Sky's Tacos.

The organizers of this event need to up their game and involve more shop owners in Third Thursdays on Pico. It would be nice if there were a few art galleries along this stretch of Pico.
I'll wait for summer to visit again.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Hiren's BootCD
hard drive recovery