Thursday, December 16, 2010

Merry Retro Xmas! DIY Light-Up House Ornaments

Growing up in the early 1960s, we had a mid-century Christmas ornament set of miniature houses, delicately dusted with glitter snow, that would light up from the inside when tree lights were inserted. Resting on a pillow of glass "angel hair," or hung on the branches of a tinsel-strewn pine tree, I would stare at them obsessively like a pajama-clad Gulliver. Now you can craft your very own retro Xmas versions, pictured above, in either "butterfly roof" Alexander home style or traditional cottage style. Just print out Swank's free design template (includes pre-decorated and blank versions for advanced crafters). Paste onto thin card stock. Cut out, score, and fold. Decorate with colored tissue paper behind cut-out windows and doors. Use a pin to punch light holes onto trees and cactii. Glue together onto base, add roof and chimney. Add liberal sprinklings of clear glitter or micro glass beads to the exterior. Gently push Xmas light through the hole in back. Gloria in Excelsis! -- the Little Dreamer Boy

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

This large, hand-drawn pen and ink production art for a vintage Halloween party supplies catalog is on exhibit in our Palm Springs gallery.

For more spooky holiday treats, head over to Swank Modern Design.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

SHAG the Store opens in Palm Springs

SHAG The Store is opening May 8 in Palm Springs at 725 N Palm Canyon Drive. It promises to be filled to the tiki-topmost with brilliant work, like the print entitled Zombie above (only $110!), and mucho merchandise from the talented Grand Poobah of Googie graphics.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

1971 E. K. Fernandez Carnival Ride Tickets

If you were a kid in Hawaii in the 60s and 70s, this was our version of Disneyland's E Tickets. E. K. Fernandez traveling carnivals would set up at different high schools, parking lots or fairgrounds on a regular circuit. If you wanted to ride the bumper cars, shoot some skeet or grind some sugar-crusted malasadas, then you needed these pre-paid ticket coupons we called "scrip." These particular tickets are from the 1971 50th State Fair, of which the rides were only part of the extensive exhibitions and attractions. Unlike the small E. K. Fernandez traveling carnivals, the 50th State Fair was large enough to attract international sideshow carnies and famous freaks. But the local carnivals were staples of our teen-aged landscape. Does anyone remember The Old Mill fun house? This was The Haunted Mansion, local-style: a dark walk-through with padded rubber floors, colored lights, and skeleton scares that were always more imagination than reality. Woe to the kid who ran out of scrip. -- Keone Goss

For more freaky tiki Hawaiiana, hele on over to Swank Modern Design.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

70s Swinger Tiki Idol Bubble Blower of Don Ho

A wacky, and slightly scary, memento from my childhood in Hawaii. Don Ho was, to us kids in high school, everything that was tacky and touristy about Waikiki. Best buddy and progeny of Hawaiian music royalty, Joe Moe, gave it to me as a laugh. Twist Don's head off, squeeze his powder blue leisure suit, and up pops a soapy ring so you can blow - what else! - tiny bubbles. Mic in one hand and drink in the other, plus puka shell choker, it's an exemplar of 1970s-in-the-islands. Of course, I came to appreciate Don Ho once I grew up and embraced the international pop culture impact of his singular career. My mother, who always vowed "lips that touch wine shall ever touch mine," became an ardent fan when Ho brought her up on stage to serenade her with a kiss...twice. Years later, I was thrilled to witness his widow performing a witchy, drunken, memorial hula on stage at the Waikiki Shell at the Cazimero brother's May Day concert. A group of gigantic, Tongan transgenders next to us screamed "Make 'A', make 'A'" as she fell on her okole three times. Bottoms up, Don! -- Keone Goss

For more freaky tiki Hawaiiana, hele on over to Swank Modern Design.