Current Month



The Internet Ramblings of Matt & Lori Knowles

August 2002

click on the thumbnails to load larger pictures
Go To Latest Entry

Thu, Aug. 1, 2002 - Katy


Since the contractors were painting the shop today, and I'm finished with stripping the wood, I actually had some extra time today. So we took some pictures, and I had time to post some updates here. You might want to go back to last month's archive since I added a bunch of info for last week that I just never found the time to add when it was current.

Today's picture is of Katy, who contacted me from the vintage fashion site and had an interest in modeling some Victorian clothes. Her timing was excellent, as we just bought part of a collection from a lady in Hydesville who was getting rid of her vintage clothes. She remembered the article about Lori and gave her first crack at everything. It was pretty hard to pick and choose she had so many wonderful things. We tried to pick things that could be used in the studio, or things that Lori didn't have in her collection.

Katy is modeling a matching bodice and skirt from the early 1890s. The dress has a lot of white on white detail that doesn't show up in this picture very well. But once I get around to adding all of the pictures to Lori's web site you'll be able to get a better idea of what makes this outfit so special. We're even thinking it would be great to rent it out as a wedding dress.

Fri, Aug. 2, 2002 - Driving the '23

Driving the '23

I've been busy painting the ceiling so I haven't had time to take photos but Mike Thomas dropped off a couple of pictures that he took while I was at the wheel of the 1923 Firetruck. Lori thought I looked pretty serious in the picture, but you would be too if you were driving something so rare and that a lot of people spent a lot of time restoring. Plus as I mentioned before, the controls were very different from our modern day vehicles. Looking at this picture, I also realized how much higher you sit driving this, but you really feel that you're on it rather than in it.

There's no picture for this one but I felt the following story was worth relaying. It's one of those "only in Ferndale" stories. Today when I went to our mailbox, in addition to the mail, there was a black folder, with a note attached to it that said "Belongs to Matt Knowles, Rose Ave." The folder wasn't mine, so I wondered, whose was it, why did they think it belonged to me, and who put it in the mailbox. Later I mentioned it to Lori, and showed her the folder. It was hers and she had left it at the Post Office while mailing some info back to the publisher. There wasn't anything in the folder to identify that it was hers, but I guess they figured it out and attached the note and gave it to the mail lady to deliver. All without charging us any postage!

Speaking of the publisher, Lori finally heard back from them, and all I can say right now is that it wasn't bad news!

Mon, Aug. 5, 2002 - White Out

White Out

Here's what I spent last weekend and the first part of this evening doing. Painting the ceiling white. Because of the texture of the tin, it had to be painted by brush, and painting it gloss white over the white primer wasn't the most exciting thing. It was kind of like painting a million golf balls white. Friday, the crew came in and sprayed almost everything with oil primer. They didn't bring any ventilation with them and there isn't much natural ventilation in the building so it stunk pretty bad. Other occupants of the building had to leave or close shop, and it even stunk up Main Street. How they managed to do that and still do a lousy job of actually getting any primer on the ceiling I'm not sure. Even on Saturday and Sunday after running fans all day, I could only work a few hours at a time. But finally the ceiling is done, and the next step is to get the floor in the gallery refinished and install the vinyl in the studio.

Wed, Aug. 7, 2002 - Split Personality

Split Personality

I haven't shown the studio for awhile, because basically it was a big white box. But Lori and I did get the flooring in today, and as you can see from the picture, we couldn't quite agree what type of flooring to put down. Actually, the wood side is roll vinyl, and that side of the studio will end up being decorated like a Victorian for portraits. The black and white checkered side will have plain white walls and will be used for doing product photography. Kind of funny that after all those years of wanting a black and white checkered floor in our kitchen on Cleaves, that it ends up in my studio.

Thu, Aug. 8, 2002 - Real Fir Coats

Real Fir Coats

Today while I was finishing the checkered side in the studio, they finally started working on refinishing the fir floor in the gallery side. They were supposed to start last Friday, but the space smelled so bad from the painting they left. Then it was going to be Tuesday, definitely Wednesday, both of which didn't happen. Contractors definitely have a different definition of definitely. They have one more coat to do tomorrow. Saturday we should get the baseboards up, and then we can start painting the base coats for all the woodwork that is going to be woodgrained.

Sat, Aug. 10, 2002 - Loleta Sunset

Loleta Sunset

This evening I took pictures at a 45 year class reunion for Fortuna High School and to finish off the roll of film I went over to Loleta to film the beautiful sunset. The forest fire in Oregon has been sending a lot of smoke our way, making the sunsets redder than usual. It has also been raining a lot of ash lately, making our car grayer than usual.

Fri, Aug. 16, 2002 - One of Larry's Talents

One of Larry's Talents

Today Larry Martin started woodgraining the wainscoting. We painted the base coats for the woodgraining and when people saw the colors they wondered what we were thinking. When they see the finished product, they'll understand.

Sat, Aug. 17, 2002 - Fake Oak Coats

Fake Oak Coats

Here's a closeup of the graining effect. Not only does it look pretty realistic from normal viewing distance, but it also hides most of the surface defects that were present in the wainscoting, mostly from layers and layers of paint that were applied quite carelessly.

Sun, Aug. 18, 2002 - Kaching


You can't have a nice Victorian office without an antique cash register. We picked this up from some friends in the old house club (yep they have one up here too). The machine needs some restoration, and it is really a very expensive cash drawer, because it can't really be used as a register since you can only ring up items up to 9.99 and that just won't cut it anymore. But it does sound cool every time you open the cash drawer. I hope I hear that sound a lot.

Mon, Aug. 19, 2002 - Spelunking Under 389 Main

Spelunking Under 389 Main

Today the phones got installed. I was a bit naive on how commercial phone lines get installed. I figured they would place the terminal where I wanted it to come into the building and then I would wire from there. Nope. There is one box for the whole building, and the terminal was at the opposite corner of the building from where I wanted the line to come in. The phone guy wasn't much help but I traced my line into the building to where it went under the building in the front. We were very lucky to discover that in the front of our space there is a doorway to crawl space. I went to the hardware store to purchase one of those flashlights that you strap to your head so I would be properly equipped for my spelunking expedition.

I started out by brushing away a huge cobweb and then climbed down through the hole. Fortunately, there weren't many more cobwebs to deal with. I guess spiders don't like dark wet spaces. The ground was very wet clay, and I slowly inched my way to the back of the building on my belly. The crawlspace kept getting tighter and tighter, and about 3' away from being able to grab the cables I dropped down, I couldn't proceed. I found a piece of wood from the floor repair (when they dropped the chimney through the floor) and was able to snag the two cables. Then I tried to back up, but my shirt got all bunched up so that didn't work. I finally was able to turn my self around and made my way back from the underworld. Then it took me the rest of the day and one more trip to the hardware store to get the phones so they would actually work.

Tue, Aug. 20, 2002 - Ceiling Fan

Ceiling Fan

Yesterday it was phones, today I got the cable installed for my high speed Internet access. This installation went much smoother, I was online within a few minutes of the truck driving away. And it didn't require and subterrainian exploration on my part.

This picture shows a few other recent additions to the office. The ceiling fan is a reproduction of an 1886 vintage fan. There will be two of them eventually, but they shorted me one of the downrods so I can't hang it yet. I also put up the two lights by the window in the front but the glass for them didn't arrive either. The picture molding also received a coat of gold paint, and the frieze area above the molding is painted. The rest of the walls will be painted after the graining has dried, which in Ferndale's climate, takes awhile.

Wed, Aug. 21, 2002 - Lori's Project

Lori's Project

Well you all know by now what's been keeping me busy. So here is what's been keeping Lori busy. She has been working on a dress for Paula to wear at an upcoming recital. Hopefully this will be the last time I have to use the parlor for a photography studio.

Fri, Aug. 23, 2002 - Sesquicentennial


Today was the start of Ferndale's two day Sesquicentennial celebration. From 6-9pm the merchants on Main Street hosted a hospitality night, serving refreshments in their shops. So even though we weren't quite ready to open, we displayed some pictures, some of Lori's clothing collection and served punch and cookies. We even put $20 in the cash register, which only begins to pay off the $500 it cost to produce the posters. Oh well. At 9pm we joined in the costume parade and dance in the parking lot. You can find Lori in the middle of the photo wearing her blue dress. Congratulations to Lori for losing enough weight so that she could wear that dress again.

Sat, Aug. 24, 2002 - Riding in the parade

Riding in the parade

Saturday the festivities continued with a parade and many exhibits and open houses. This time I got to ride in the parade, and since the fire trucks were in the front, by the time we finished the route we were able to get out and watch most of the rest of it. Did my best impersonation of a beauty queen and waved to crowds, but the best part was making a lot of noise running the various sirens and horns. This is the engine that I will be assigned to, although Company 1 is also responsible for the two water tenders. I'll have to tell you how all that works some time. After the parade the fire departent served up a BBQ lunch for around a thousand people. We ran out of pickle relish with two people in line. Not bad planning. Then after the BBQ there was the speeches and the eating of the big cake they made. Not as big of a cake as the one made for the centennial, but delicious none-the-less. Then we went home and crashed.