Saturday, March 22, 2008

Why Hogs and Roses?

Many of the shops around here use rose in their names. Rose Cottage, Second Hand Rose, Rose Trellis and even Rusty Rose. These are the shops that emphasize shabby chic, cottage or some other similar fussy and girly style of furnishings. They are the shabbies. Flowers and frills and lacy type things. I’m a guy who has somehow fallen into this shabby world. No wife or girlfriend pushing me for help and certainly no partner expressing the need to decorate. My stuff tends to be outside of the cottage and you will not find a piece of foo foo anywhere. My things are the hogs in this world of roses. Thus the title: Hogs and Roses.

I have been collecting, buying and selling antiques and objets d’interest for many years. At 8 years old my best friend and I took our coaster wagons on a scavenger hunt through the alleys of St. Paul. We returned with a full load of great stuff that others were tossing out. I’ve been hunting ever since.

I ran into the earliest shabbies about ten years ago. What I saw was a bad coat of paint on a piece of 1970's press board junk. And it was selling. I declared that I would shabotage furniture when pigs fly. Thus the title: Hogs and Roses.

Fortunately the shabbies have changed greatly from my first exposure. The pieces are much better in design and execution. Creativity and style exude from the items that many of the shabby ladies now produce. The creative opportunities presented by recycling, reconstructing and redesigning are exhilarating, inventive and often very clever.

My house was gut remodeled about 12 years ago. The design incorporates 17 antique stained glass windows and many other architectural antiques. This design process was the one great artistic expression in my life. The reuse and incorporation of similar architectural elements into my hogs now offers a similar, but smaller scale, opportunity to make further artistic expression. I started to sell some of my pieces in one of the girly rose type shops. I was "the man" when women were in the shop for our monthly sales. They are presenters offering the customers a cozy pink nest. I am the junk man wondering if I should have washed that mirror after only 20 years in the garage. Thus the title: Hogs and Roses.

I will be writing an occasional blog at this site. I will give you some of my ideas, share some of my treasures and seek your counsel in dealing with the thorns that sometimes appear among the roses.

Right now I am contemplating the use of old doors in shabotage projects. Contemplation is about as far as I have gotten because I have no suitable place to work. The garage is filled with inventory (which may be psycho-babble for the good junk that I don't want to part with right now). The weather on the tundra is still too cold to work outside. I have started excavating my garage. I even found proof that the cement floor still exists under the pile. Excavating has produced a number of treasures and the contemplation of new hogs to assemble.

I hope that you comment on this blog and return again to see what we are doing. I’ll be the guy in the corner trying to hide his hogs among the roses.

Mr. Flannery


TERESA said...

Interesting, Peter! I love it. I'll be watching for updates.

Minnesota hotdish said...

Hello Mr Flannary

I too feel much like you a duck out of water. I live in Seattle and we like metal, well heavy metal and certainly not shabotage dittys. Please keep me posted on your new attempts and most certainly all the Roses. I miss them. Well, back to my Easter Hot Dish

Debbie said...

Hi Peter....I'm so glad you joined blogland....I love the title of your blog and the reasons behind it! I hope you don't mind that I'm adding a link to your blog on my blog so I can remember to visit you often. I can't wait to see what new hogs you come up the table!


SueB said...

Hello My Friend....I've always enjoyed reading you and look forward to this new adventure.

James Angus said...

You found me, ...and now I've found you. I also have a "masculine" point of view in the shabby world...and mam oh man am I looking forward to reading all of your posts...there certainly are a lot of them....


Cavender Diary James