5 Responses to “Chalkware lamps”

  1. Allee Willis

    I love the lamps but that photo of you in your artist beret in the middle of them is the killer!

    Although I know that’s not what they’re supposed to be, between her minidress and ponytail the girl looks like a go go dancer.

    Brown and chartreuse were classic 50s colors. The shades are extremely similar but not exact to the Del Rubio’s. Their lamps are male and female armed dancers. https://www.alleewillis.com/awmok/kitschenette/2011/01/10/allee-willis-kitsch-o-the-day-the-del-rubio-triplets-and-a-valentines-day-card-for-milly/

    I had an unbelievably incredible pair of red and turquoise ballet dancers that I sold the one and only time I sold some of my stuff. I remember each and every item I got rid of more than I remember anything I still have. Even at that time, 1983, when I was completely broke, I felt like a curator of a museum who was letting people steal things from the shelves. But that’s another matter entirely and I’m sure no one reading this will find that hard to believe!

    Really amazing that you found the lamps in a pair and in as good of condition as they are. Can I ask how much you paid for them? Don’t tell me this was a dump super discount item!

  2. denny

    That’s another love I have, hats. That is when I can find them to fit my head. I usually have to go to second hand shops or vintage clothing stores to find something to fit me. Yes, this was dry cleaned prior to plopping it on my head…..

    I found this pair of lamps at Liberty Thrift Shop in Collegeville, Pennsylvania. The pair cost me $60.00. Well my Mom and Dad purchased them for me as a christmas gift. How fab is that?

    What concerns me is that there is some chipping and flaking and I have no idea if there is a proper way to “repair” chalkware lamps that need the paint touched up?

    I love the shades as they remind me of gigantic “picture hats” from the 30’s and 40’s.


    • Allee Willis

      The only way I’ve ever repaired any of my chalkware stuff is to match the color as closely as possible and then, if there are too many flakes, dab it on very carefully. If there are too many places that have flaked, again match the color, sand the lamps down so that the edges of the flaked off areas won’t show and paint over the whole thing in very very even strokes and so it looks like it was sprayed on as it was originally applied. Your girl looks like she might touch up good though it will take quite a while to match the color dead on. The boy, however, may not be so successful touched up. If you have to fully paint either one of them, fully paint them both. This, of course, will ruin it for a purist but if you intend to leave them out there’s no sense in leaving something in that condition if every time you look at it you go, ‘shit, I wish they weren’t in that condition.’ They’ll be beautiful either way.

  3. denny

    Perfect. Thank you for this response. If you completely painted them, what color would you choose?

    I’m not in a hurry to get this sorted but I agree with you in regards to being a purist about things. I just couldn’t pass these up.

    I am addicted to anything that is chalkware and I love lamps.