Friday, March 19, 2010

Fug or Fab: Are these heirlooms in the stars?

Y'all seem to love the "Fug or Fab" posts.  I think everyone simply enjoys deciding whether things are Fug or Fab because you are given free reign to judge away with absolutely no consequences! 

On to the task at hand.  Mary needs our help.  She was gifted the below-pictured four signs of the Zodiac from a deceased relative.  They are definitely vintage and have hand written price tags attached to them....likely from the 60s.  Now, I love astrology and even recently featured the kitschy-fun new Jonathan Adler Zodiac pillows.  Take this as evidence that I am not opposed to a bit of astro thrown into a home's decor. 

I am also a huge fan of vintage accessories and things that are a little "off" or over the top, especially in small doses (and sometimes in large quantities, actually).   Let's just say that Mary's home would not look like anyone else's if she displays these guys. 

These are Mary's photos...I have not examined the pieces up close. 

Detail of Scorp. 

Detail of Piesces.

ALLL that being said, are these fug or fab?  What say you?

Before I personally rule, I want to throw one thing out there.  Instead of simply tossing them if Mary determines that they are, indeed, fug, what about attempting the following...

iPhone shot of one of two framed watercolors. 

What does this picture have to do with what I suggest we attempt to do?  Perhaps the Zodiac "pieces" can be removed from the olive backing and freshened by adding brighter/lighter mat.  In the above photo, I reframed some little watercolors using linen as the matting.  I just placed the painting directly on top of the stretched linen and voila.  A custom look for pennies on the dollar. 

I also wonder if the pieces could be brightened up a bit, much like the frame in the above pic.  I applied gold metallic spray paint with a brush to the black album frame (have you ever seen those at craft stores?) to brighten/Liberace it up.  I wonder if the Zodiacs would look a little brighter/ fun vintage if their crevices were less dark? 

Another option (and this would definitely be the going-for-broke choice) would be to simply paint them completely white and laquery and re-frame them either back on a colored piece like the olive or on something neutral, but textural like the linen.  Dare I say that they could look kind of luxe in goldy frames over a textured darker linen??  (This may be going to far.  I get it.) 

Last option, to alter it but just keep one or two as sweet reminders of the relative and as a funky touch to a shelf or gallery wall.  I think one as part of a vignette could be the great vintage touch for one of Mary's shelves or display area. 

Okay, let Mary know in the comments if she should pitch the family heirloom (and by "pitch" I mean sell on ebay or donate them), hang them with pride as is, or "re-purpose" them. 

I cannot wait to see what you have to say (and I know Mary cannot either)!



P.S.  Happy Weekend!  The Green Lantern filming is wrapping up near Beau's office.  Ho-hum.  No Ryan Reynolds sighting. 


  1. Of course I love me some zodiac fun as well, LOVE these! I am totally fine with the current frames and matting, gold and olive is a very retro combo. It really depends on Mary's house/decorating style. Funky homage-to-grandma retro style may look random in her house. Seems that you can easily change the frame and matting colors to suit Mary's style. Like a color combo that might be a little more clean/classic is white frames with a dark blue or navy matting. And you could go even further and paint the actual tiles white, as you suggested above. That would look nice and crisp all grouped together.

    Let us know the outcome!

  2. Thanks to the best constant commenter, Leigh! I love you!

  3. I like them and I think they 'work' in the right place. I vote fab. I don't think they can be re-framed though as they appear to be in a (gasp) shadowbox of sorts?

  4. Depending on the decor I think they could be great!

  5. I am a little torn, but i will go with fab. In the right spot and on the right (light) color wall, these could work!

  6. Thanks peeps! I think I'm either going to leave as is and possibly hang in the living room or maybe re-purpose them a bit and hang in the guest room. Will send "after" pics once I decide!

  7. I think they are FAB! I think changing them at all would make them FUG!! Of course I was born before these were even created!!! Kathy