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Topic: Will work for coffee -- RIDICULOUSLY PIC HEAVY  (Read 7049 times)
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Red Fork Hippie Chick
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« on: March 26, 2012 06:59:49 PM »

A few months ago, I wandered into a new coffeehouse in a historic building about half a block off Route 66 in Sapulpa, Okla., to catch up on some paperwork I needed to do for school. It was a nice place, with good coffee, soft lighting, comfortable furniture, free Wi-Fi, coffee sacks hanging from the ceiling, and local artists' work on the walls.

The restroom hadnt yet received the same cafe-chic treatment as the rest of the building.

After looking at the water putty smeared on the walls, outsized mirror above the sink, and awkwardly placed shelves next to the door, I asked one of the owners what she had planned for that space.

Im not sure yet, she said.

Thats what I was hoping shed say.

After showing her some samples of my work, including my sort-of-locally-famous car (on Craftster at http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=332918.0), I told her I'd be happy to redo her bathroom in exchange for all the coffee I could drink. Given my fondness for cappuccino, that may or may not have been a good trade for her.

Given the building's history and proximity to Route 66, I wanted to use a 66 theme, with lots of local/state history. I chose lots of brown "coffee" tones to give it kind of a quasi-sepia look that would (hopefully) evoke old photo postcards, and all my subjects were people, places, or attractions associated with Route 66 in Oklahoma. Before I started, I stripped off the old wallpaper border and rag-painted the whole room in cream and gold to hide the flaws in the surface of the walls and make them look sort of like scrapbook paper, which I thought suited the postcard theme pretty well.

I started with the iconic Blue Whale in Catoosa, Okla. (The white spot in the picture is Mod Podge that hasn't dried yet. I used acrylics to paint all the pictures, then came back and sealed each one with a coat of Mod Podge to protect it from everyday wear and tear, smudges, scratches, etc.)

A restored 1930 Phillips 66 station in Chandler; the late, great Shady Rest Court in Red Fork; the Desert Hills Motel in Tulsa; the Round Barn in Arcadia; the long-closed Cotton Boll Motel in Canute; and Sapulpa's own "Guardian of the Plains" sculpture filled the rest of the space to the left of the door. Each "postcard" is roughly the size of a placemat.

The World's Largest Totem Pole, four miles off 66 in Foyil, and Lucille's Historic 66 gas station near Hydro cover the space above the door.

The space to the right of the door was a little narrower, so I covered it with vertical images: Sapulpa's own flying roller skate sign; Oklahoma City's Milk Bottle Buildling; the Glancy Motel in Clinton; "Myrtle," the giant oil-drum kachina doll that stands outside the National Route 66 Museum in Elk City; the Mickey Mantle statue from Mantle's hometown of Commerce; and the historic Rock Creek Bridge on the old Ozark Trail alignment of Route 66 at the west end of Sapulpa.

At the owner's request, I painted a picture of the Victorian Theater, which was in the building that now houses the coffeehouse. This painting and the one below it were much larger -- about 30 inches wide, IIRC. The only thing in the room that doesn't have anything to do with 66 is the back of the postcard. If you don't recognize the names or the address, Google them. They're a long way from Route 66, but the quote and its source seemed nonetheless fitting for a coffeehouse near an old highway widely regarded as the ultimate road trip. (The picture of the theater has some wonky angles, partly because the wall was too narrow for me to set up vanishing points, and partly because I was working from a photograph of a photograph, which made my source itself a bit wonky.)

This was another request from the owner. I'm not completely satisfied with the likeness, but it's about as good as I'm likely to get on a rough surface. Will's portrait is directly above the toilet, occupying a space about the width of the tank, so I thought it would be funny to paint him in his famous pose, scratching his head and grinning as if he's amused by what he sees.

I even replaced that ghastly mirror. You can get a little better idea of the layout and scale of the pictures from the reflection.

I thought I had a photo of the Roman shade I made out of coffee-print fabric to cover the window, but I can't find it. I was actually more excited about the shade than the paintings, as I'd never made one before and was pleasantly surprised when it worked. Also not pictured: the door, which is covered with chalkboard paint so patrons can leave messages or add their own artwork if they're so inspired.

The project took several months to complete, mainly because the coffeehouse has limited evening hours and is closed on Sundays, which made it hard for me to get in there and work. I've got about 40 hours of actual labor invested in the project.

Oh, and if you're interested, the coffeehouse itself is online at http://www.brewsandbytes.com/.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012 07:37:05 PM by Redforkhippie - Reason: Fixed problem with duplicate photo. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2012 08:00:33 PM »

Your talent is so amazing!  What a fun project for you, and how great for everyone who uses that bathroom. Thanks for sharing it with us, I really enjoyed reading this post.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2013 08:24:26 AM by Leslieshappyheart » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2012 03:30:21 AM »

What a great story, and you did a fantastic job!  I love that you did the door in chalkboard paint.  Enjoy your cappuccinos, you earned them.   Smiley

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« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2012 05:29:37 PM »

This is INCREDIBLE!  I cannot believe what you did here--be proud! =^..^= ~

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« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2012 10:52:20 PM »

Thanks. I had a lot of fun with it. Nice to get all that free coffee, too. Smiley

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« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2012 06:52:34 AM »

What a wonderful redo! The bathroom looks fantastic now. I'll be the coffee shop owner feels she got the best of that bargain. I featured this project on Craftster's Facebook page. Thanks for sharing!  Smiley

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« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2012 07:00:22 AM »

This is an AMAZING transformation!! I bet people will be wanting to hang out in there and drink their coffee Smiley!

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« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2012 07:03:54 AM »

This is SO COOL!!!

I love it all - you are amazingly talented.
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« Reply #8 on: March 29, 2012 07:05:28 AM »

HO-ly cow! That is one aMazing bathroom!  Shocked

I'd go into the coffee house just to stand in the bathroom! Bet it boosts foot traffic.

Great job, great great job. This rocks.

« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2012 07:36:43 AM »

What a wonderful job! I'm thoroughly impressed!!

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