The Art of the Collection: Vintage Soda Bottles

The American Heritage College Dictionary, Fourth Edition, defines collection as: 1. The act or process of collecting. 2. A group of objects or works to be seen or kept together. You can stop laughing—yes, I have my daughter’s college dictionary, a physical relic of the past, nonetheless, I choose to perceive utilizing this book as an organic experience of seeking words and definitions. Mind you, I do have spell-check! It’s about balance, yes?!

There are few things more striking than a display of similar objects placed together for viewing. Something about a mass of something, of anything—that calls for, even demands—our attention. Perhaps it’s the representation of the idea of togetherness or the comfort of orderly categories that resonates with both the viewer and the collector. Or possibly, depending on certain circumstances, the oddity or obscurity of the collection!

The attraction to collecting and collections might be found in the common questions a collector often hears; “Why do you collect those/that/them?” “How long has it taken?” Are you still collecting or have are completed your collection?”

We have found that the answers are as varied as the people and the collections! All the more reason to inquire! Please note, it is rare to hear a collector consider their collection “completed.”

History or memories, wishes—even dreams—can play a part in the joy and artistry of collecting. Often, it is more than the just the form or design that attracts a person to a collection. Not all collections are vintage or antique, many collections take place in current day form.

At Rooster Ridge we love The Art of the Collection. Our collections do serve to fulfill an aspect of the need we have to feel comforted by what surrounds us. Interesting items, beautiful colors, textures, design and history all resonating the emotions that bring richness, beauty and joy to our lives.

Art Lives!


Mission Accomplished…Take Off!

Folks, this is NOT your average fan! Here’s more on the subject of the original version of recycling, re-purposing and utilizing those unique treasures we come across—either through the traditional method of passing down or discovered by chance or luck— or through the process of selective vintage and antique hunting! (Our favorite method…)

Years ago Steven had located this unusual vintage three-blade wooden and metal propeller which once flew in the blue skies! Initially, the propeller was mounted to the ceiling as it yearned to once again feel the wind against the aerodynamic blades. After quite some time of staring into the “white yonder” of the ceiling as we studied the propeller and the challenge of motorizing the blades, we are pleased to announce—Mission Accomplished! The vintage propeller – turned ceiling fan has taken off!

This unique version of a ceiling fan required the mastery of engineering and for that we need to give a round of applause to Tony, our amazingly talented Race Team Engineer! (Applause)

In order to have a fan belt driven from a remote motor, the pulley and mounting bracket had to be custom fabricated. Job well done! The addition of copper paint on the exposed hardware completes the attractive finished appearance.

The fan is operated with a fan speed control mounted on the wall and when the speed is set on the high we are stunned that the house does not lift off!

The comforting sound of the pulley as the belt chuggs along adds to the charm of this unique addition to Rooster Ridge. Boarding Pass Required!


Birds in a Crate—Flock on a Gate

While wandering through the iron yard of one of our favorite architectural salvage spots a disheveled black plastic crate resting on the back half of packed shelf—seemed to chirp—drawing attention to the contents. Climbing ensued. It was not unlike climbing a tree in order to reach a distant limb to obtain the full-view-vantage-point that was desired. While peering inside the curious crate a nest of sorts was discovered—for a flock of iron birds. Although the iron bird sculptures had been haphazardly piled into the crate and allowed to rust which resulted in some of the bases becoming detached—the beautiful and artistic design could not be obscured.

Reaching into the nest resulted in the discovery of two different designs; one bird looking intently forward and the other downward as if in search for a fallen berry or seed. The intricate details of the wing and tail feathers and of their lovely perch base was not diminished in the least by their current condition. Having no idea what the outcome would be—bringing them to The Cottage at Rooster Ridge seemed a natural fit—crate and all they came!

Behold the wonders of elbow grease, steel wool, copper paint and—love—of all things artistic! The copper paint which was used to paint the birds is an actual metal paint which contains copper. When the paint is left unsealed the exposure to the elements allows for a rich patina to evolve. Over time, there will be hints of the classic blue-green patina which develops in aged copper—or if one wishes, an aging solution can be added to speed up the process.

The birds in a crate have found many uses and nests—for one holiday they were incorporated into the table setting—as a line of birds paraded down the center of the table assisting in the creation of a festive mood! Additionally, the birds have been included in natural mantle displays encompassing leaves, twigs, pine cones and candles. Two of the birds currently enjoy being perched in one of the window sills of the cottage. It is rumored that one, due to its adoration by a guest was allowed to fly out-of-state and now acts as a paper weight and a sweet reminder of The Cottage at Rooster Ridge.

As we are fortunate to have many—a crate full—five now permanently flock on the front mahogany gate which is built into the rock wall which runs along the front property line of Rooster Ridge. Plans are in place for seven birds to be installed on the top of the upper balcony porch posts on The House at Rooster Ridge as the renovation develops.

At The Cottage at Rooster Ridge we have found that with the right eye, some effort and love of all things artistic—Art Lives!