January 29, 2012

Le Weekend

Ha! I’ve been polishing up on my French as I’ve been applying pages of my 1897 book to the walls of my downstairs bath, but I have realized that one book isn’t going to cover all of the walls. So I popped over to the Book Thing this afternoon to scout some more French novels. My criteria for the books is that they have to have deckled edges on the paper, have some yellowing, not be too text heavy and be old.

I found a slightly more recent book this afternoon that ticks all of those boxes. La Vie des Sœurs Brontë par Emilie et Georges Romieu.The best thing about this book, aside from the topic, is that it has a few little illustrations. This one is of Anne’s dog, Flossy.And here are the sisters,Anne, Emily and Charlotte, painted by Patrick Branwel Brontë.  The book was published in 1929, and I love that you can see the actual imprint of the letterpress letters on the pages. The book is really too fragile to read and I figure that by pasting up the pages, I am preserving it.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I am scouting a building for the Baltimore Architecture Foundation’s 25th Anniversary Gala in April, so I went by to take some pictures. I was looking for a motif that I could use for the invitation and the collateral materials. It’s an old bank building that’s currently being leased/sold, so we have the use of it.  It’s got so many great details that I thought I’d find the definitive one pretty quickly. Here are some I rejected:
But I did love the whole barley twist, spiral theme ran throughout the decoration on the building.   I managed to peek inside the building and see some of its interesting features, too.

I think I spot the perfect place for the bar!

I loved the Greek Key motif in the tiled vestibule, but rejected that as too common.Of course, I could have taken the classical motif from my old Stubbs shoes!

But here’s the piece that really grabbed me. It’s graphic enough to make a good design element, yet unique enough to be indicative of the building.After fiddling around with it on Photoshop, I realized that I needed to get a clear picture of the bronze gate without all of the distractions behind it. So I drove back today to take some more pictures.Naturally, the gates were closed and locked today, so I had to stuck my big piece of tag-board through the bars, and then tape it to the rails, so I’d get a plain background. All the while hoping that no one walked by and questioned me.

I shot some images in black and white,and some with a fill-flash to flatten the image. With a little work – a lot less now that it’s got a plain background – I can start working on the invitation for the party.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I’ve been asked to help do some fundraising for the Maryland SPCA, so went to meet with them the other day. Their offices are located in a great old 1860’s building. I love all of the gothic-style arches, and especially the little windows on either side of the front door, with their custom shutters. There’s another small building on the property that was originally a pumping station for a reservoir. I could have used this as one of the buildings in my tiny temples series of images.

How was your weekend?


  1. Meg wonderful details and architecture. You do so much to give back!

    I saw Hugo today and loved the film.

    Art by Karena

  2. Custom shutters! What on earth is that second roof line - the one with the curve in the middle - called? I was wondering at all the lovely patterns you rejected, but the metal work is gorgeous. Can't imagine anyone would think you were up to too much mischief with your tagboard and tape!

  3. I work weekends, but sneak over to my blog and see what MIGHT be happening on weekends in the near future!

    I have an evil bathroom, unfortunately the only one in my house, that I have been plotting to improve. Books on the walls might just be the answer. Question: What do you use as the paste/covering?

  4. That little building is such a gem. It's too bad it's junked up with that dumpster and parking signs.
    --Road to Parnassus

  5. your pictures are wonderful + you are so generous. love those gates, you will show the finished product? xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

  6. I too am fascinated by your bathroom project......would love to know the type of paste, are you coating with something to waterproof it, etc?



Thank you for reading and commenting on Pigtown*Design. I read each and every comment and try to reply if I have your e-mail address.