Welcome to the Hipster House, which Selena and Veinous Dude bought at the bottom of the housing bust and lovingly restored on a slim budget.
The house is a Tudor revival in the Brentwood Historic District, a pocket of the Coronado neighborhood between McDowell Road, I-10, 16th Street and 20th Street. The major source of groceries is thus the ever-ebullient Pro's Ranch Market at Roosevelt and 16th Street, which Veinous Dude likes because he can get pork bellies and pig's feet for cheap. You won't find those at Fry's.
One neighborhood resident told the Arizona Republic:
They're imperfect homes. They're all unique, from the style of windows to the color they're painted to the stucco on the walls.This house is a Dura-Craft Sweetheart Cottage (no longer in production, thanks to Dura-Craft's going bankrupt in 2005) that I bought as an unfinished shell at Auntie Em's in 2010 over the Independence Day weekend. While Dura-Craft claimed the house was in 1:12 scale, that would make it a mere 255 square feet, which is ridiculously small for a two-story. At 1:18, it has a more realistic 20 feet of frontage and rooms that are a bit over 11 feet deep, for total size around 450 square feet.
Starting the tour in the bathroom is convenient for guests who need a quick break; as it happens, the Renwal bath tub and sink were the first pieces of furniture I bought, in an impulsive moment at the Brass Armadillo. It is fortunate that the tub fits exactly into the nook, as I hadn't done anything sensible like measuring beforehand.
The tile is scrapbook paper from The Paper Company Studio, in a two-sided pattern called Mediterranean Summer - Grecian Blue.
The bottles and such came off a string of glass beads that were on sale when the Joann Etc. out on the reservation went out of business.
The bath rug is from Dollar Tree. So, I think, is the space vehicle. The space vehicle is in the bathroom because there's really nowhere else to put it.
Hmmm... somebody seems to have left a latte cup on the nightstand.
Because this is a hipster house, there must be owls! These are certified hipster owls, as they come from GreenHAUS, which is not merely a boutique but also an art space. It is within a manageable walk for Selena and Veinous Dude, at least in winter, when it is not hotter than the surface of the sun. The bowl is one of two from Yucatan Imports in Tempe.
The most exciting find, though, was the Marx Little Hostess lowboy in aqua. The standard Little Hostess bedroom is off-white with pink "upholstery" (like this), and I've seen a brown lowboy with no other matching pieces (like this). . . and apparently there was also an entire version of the bedroom set, chaise longue and all, in aqua with white upholstery. Fortunately, I do not have space for it, as it kind of requires doing the rest of the room in zebra to be sufficiently fabulous.
Selena and Veinous Dude have less glamorous tastes, since they have a platform bed made from sponges (excellent for back support!) under a headboard from a Dollar Tree greeting card. The cat bench is a World Market ring holder. Veinous Dude sits on it to put his boots on.
Over in the far corner, barely visible, is a kachina from the Sharlot Hall Museum, up in Prescott. This is also where we keep the first governor's mansion. Selena finds that keeping the cats away from the kachina's feathers is a challenge.
Downstairs in the kitchen, owl canisters! Owl planter for the potted herbs! Somehow the owl hanging on the wall beyond the mixer didn't make it into the shot, but it's there. Hipsters can never have too many owls.
The kitchen set is 1970s Lundby, as I wanted something with opening cabinets and with upper cabinets. It's actually the same orange as the flooring (TPC Studio Mediterranean Summer - Alhambra).
It's a bonus that the set includes a dishwasher, as Veinous Dude loves to cook and generates a lot of dirty dishes. Selena got him the stand mixer for Christmas back in 2010.
The table and chairs are Tomy Smaller Home from the very early 1980s, and the bowl is the second one from Yucatan Imports. (Oh look! An owl soap dispenser by the kitchen sink!)
Now, there's something odd and it's not just the trick of the light that's making the cream paint look yellow. . . atop the cat condo, there's a cat other than Fido (who's barely visible on the front chair). Meet Rover, the new kitten. Rover, likes to climb and can often be found atop the kitchen cabinets.
Of course, Veinous Dude made cupcakes. Should you wish some of your own, the trick is to find a Toys R Us that carries miWorld collector's packs, where the cupcakes and stand cost about half of what they do when bought directly from a Sprinkles.
It is ultimately hipster that the coffee table is a food truck.
The aqua Renwal chairs were also part of the first reckless buying binge at Brass Armadillo. This left me at somewhat of a loss for an adequate sofa, though I was very pleased to find a Plasco davenport in aqua with its legs intact. The side table is actually a native drum from a shop on Fourth Avenue in Tucson. Barely visible to the left, on the wall, is the electric guitar that Veinous Dude gave Selena for Christmas in 2010.
The tile step is also from Tucson. The planters are from Mexican Imports in Scottsdale, and Selena dropped out of her flower arranging class after being told that the topiaries were too high for the planters.
And Spiderman is, in fact, coming for dinner. Right now, he's discussing with Selena whether he should bring anything or if Veinous Dude has the whole menu planned. Selena's going to tell him to just pick up a couple bottles of wine.
To know more about various things mentioned:
- Fullerton Heritage, giving more detail about the "storybook cottage" style of Tudor Revival, though the local notes are all Southern California.
- 1950s entry in Jennifer McKendry's excellent online history of dollhouses gives many examples of Renwal, Plasco, and other brands of that era.
- Pinterest results for Marx Little Hostess.
- The 1960s-1990s, Part 2 entry on the same site covers Smaller Home furniture and shows another Dura-Craft Sweetheart Cottage.
- Vintage Lundby blog, the history of the Lundby Gothenburg, and tips on dating Lundby all deal with the houses that original went with the kitchen set.