Wallace Neff – California Spanish – on steroids

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  1. April 4, 2013

    That’s the perfect title. Perhaps a little too ornate?

    • April 4, 2013

      You know I can handle ornate if it’s within the structure – but if it’s a paint job, or too much drapery (you’ll see what I mean if you click on the listing showcase for Castillo del Lago in my next post) then I just want to go around exposing walls and tossing decorations and “objet” out the windows.

      • April 4, 2013

        I agree. As I get older I feel the need to simplify in ways I never thought I would. I almost get claustrophobic with too many decorations.

      • April 4, 2013

        Yes! Clutter makes me insane, although I have learned just to turn my head away when I pass a certain somebody’s room and know that it’s clean under all those piles of art supplies and gadgetry… Wait, what would you call that… Denial??? 😉

      • April 4, 2013

        LOL! Yes, I learned to do the same. Turning my head, shutting the door, whatever was needed at the time. When he’d catch me rolling my eyes or see the vein in my neck start to bulge he would tell me that his friend’s rooms were much worse – – that’s what I was supposed to gauge my judgement on. ha!
        Sadly, I miss those days.

      • April 4, 2013

        The empty nest is coming up in August – I’m not looking forward to it. Although I do have great plans for the studio and extra bedroom 😉

      • April 4, 2013

        Thatta girl! Stay one step ahead and you’ll be fine. Is he staying in the near vicinity or moving far away?

      • April 4, 2013

        He’s been accepted at FIT in NYC – very exciting – and he’s sitting for an exam at a design academy in Europe – also an exciting possibility… But… You know what I’m talking about. Either place will be a completely different way of life than he’s accustomed to, but one’s just soooo much farther away. I try to convey what kind of adaptation he’ll be going through and he just looks at me, that look that says, “your lips are moving but I haven’t the slightest interest in what you’re saying.”

      • April 4, 2013

        haha! I know exactly what you’re talking about! Both of my children went to school in Europe and it was incredibly difficult to have them so far away. (although I did find reasons to go check on them- tee hee) The good thing is, if he chooses to go abroad he will come back a much more worldly and self assured young man. I can’t say that my son ever learned to clean his room, but he traveled around enough to feel very confident and resourceful. I think he had more of an education in seeing the world than he did sitting in a classroom. And let’s just say, that NYC can feel like another world, too. Either way, he’ll grow and change in ways that you can’t fathom. It’s an exciting time for him. I’m sure he’s brilliant like his mother so he has that going for him. 😉

      • April 4, 2013

        You should be charging me for these sessions! Seriously… and a little shift in topic… but, I skimmed through your site yesterday and besides your insight and therapeutic aptitude – you are FUNNY and witty and have an open and extremely engaging writing style. I’m just sayin’…

      • April 4, 2013

        Oh, thanks, Vickie. (I’m frightened for what you might have seen.) When my brain is firing on all cylinders, which is rare, I can amuse myself sometimes.

      • April 4, 2013

        I saw somebody coming to grips with some serious writing skills — book, screenplay, book, screenplay, or something to do with new media, an online interactive book… Something like you’re doing now…

      • April 4, 2013

        I think once my life gets sorted I’ll take a good look at the scripts I’ve written and decide if I want to continue in that direction. I did write a TV pilot that I think you’d enjoy. It’s called, Halcyon Days. I had written it for somebody specifically, and again, it came very close to getting made. By the time I wrote it, I had honed my skills a bit more, so it’s something that I’m actually a little proud of. If I ever find a my scripts (everything is in storage) I’ll send you a copy.
        You’re sweet for encouraging me, Vickie. You’re in a completely different/higher league than I am, so all of this is a supreme compliment. You might say I’m coming to grips with everything in my life right now. It will be interesting to see how the future unfolds.

      • April 4, 2013

        Ms. Lisa, you are a phoenix rising. I want you to come to grips with that. And, I am looking forward to reading anything you want to send me. xox, and more xox, V

  2. April 4, 2013

    What architecture! Love it.

    • April 4, 2013

      Hands down one of the most innovative and wonderful architects in Southern California. He even designed a low cost bubble house for use after WWII – and lived in the prototype in Pasadena!

  3. George Kaplan
    April 4, 2013

    Steroidal indeed – now that’s just showing off!

    • April 4, 2013

      “If ya got it, flaunt it!” 😉

  4. George Kaplan
    April 4, 2013

    Ha! True. I wonder what clothes you could wear to match such majesty 🙂

    • April 4, 2013

      Me? Personally? Well, right now I’m in my pajamas, and they’re not silk charmeuse like old Ginger Rogers!

  5. George Kaplan
    April 4, 2013

    Bwahahaha! No, I meant a person generally but that’s nice to know;) I would say I imagine that you outmatch ol’ ginger whether your pyjamas are silken or no but that would sound v. dubious, so I won’t! Imagine you could be wearing an outfit adorned with ostrich feathers to bed for the Full Ginger!

    • April 4, 2013

      Oh, ostrich feathers! They’d fly around and make you sneeze 😉

  6. April 4, 2013

    Yes he is from the-Throw Everything In- school of decoration I think.I am a terrible one for clutter,mostly because of my artistic interests, so its art clutter.I also have a very highly skilled team of people who visit once a week and apply dust very carefully with an airbrush to top up the atmosphere of artistic disarray.I have tried to explain this to visitors,but philistines that that they are, they think I am just making excuses.

    • April 4, 2013

      Ha! Yes – on set that’s called aging down or teching to give everything the air of reality 🙂

  7. Melissa @ Swamp of Boredom
    April 4, 2013

    I’m sure I’m crazy, but when I saw that staircase, the sweep of it, the shape of the entrance hall, then the large room, I wondered if it was the house from Sunset Boulevard. It’s been a while since I’ve seen the movie, and I don’t think Norma’s house was Spanish style – I seem to remember ornate wood paneling? – but that was my first thought.

    • April 4, 2013

      Oh, these sweeping stairs – they were very popular in the twenties and thirties. The Sunset Blvd. house, the real one they shot at was an Italianate Renaissance style estate in a very old section of Los Angeles (kind of across town from Bev. Hills) that was torn down to make way for an office building. And, you’re right… lots of dark wood paneling!

    • October 8, 2014

      I just saw Sunset Boulevard for the first time and had the same thought. The wall railing was the same style I believe, almost looks like hanging velvet ropes.

  8. George Kaplan
    April 4, 2013

    Unrelated – but it’s interesting that movies such as Rebecca, Sunset Blvd and Psycho with their memorable manses are haunted house stories without ghosts. Rebecca and Norma Bates are dead but haunt the living, while Norma Desmond is a living ghost herself (or haunted by the ghost of Hollywood Past – and Buster Keaton, Anna Q. Nilssen, and even Von Stroheim are Ghosts of Hollywood Past too. True, I may be reaching…!

  9. April 4, 2013

    Vickie,teching thank you the word is new to me.My house is well teched then.I do tend to age this down to fit in with the house if the shape is good.This is particularly true of brass objects which I patinate a rather unpleasant chemical namely ammonia in a closely closed box.The fumes do the job and bingo instant age and a coughing fit if you are not careful.Then its fine wire wool to rub off excess verdigris or being left alone if the effect is right.

    • April 4, 2013

      You know what Picasso instructed his kids to do to get the patina going? Yes, that’s right.

  10. April 4, 2013

    I love Rebecca and it still haunts me.My eldest daughter is pretty obsessed by it as well.I have somewhere a remake.Its not too bad ,but for me the orginal is best.

  11. George Kaplan
    April 4, 2013

    You can’t beat Hitch can you? Even if the versions with Anna Massey as Mrs Danvers or Emilia Fox as Mrs De Winter weren’t actually bad. Your daughter has taste, sir! Your influence?! I knew a lady whose favourite book was Rebecca…

  12. April 4, 2013

    Well George I would like to think that I have influenced her postively.She loves Hitchcock as well.She pretends to have no interest in art having as she says been dragged around galleries too often as a child.She is quite obsessed, as she would say, by old buildings and country houses,so I think the artistic influence comes out that way.Despite a disinclination to pursue an artistic career{she is studying Law} she can draw very well and in a style strangely similiar to my wifes style.

    By the way she used to play some old audio tapes I had of Rebecca again and again.

    • George Kaplan
      April 4, 2013

      I think you are right about the artistic influence, Edward! Interesting that your daughter’s drawing style resembles that of your wife, isn’t it?

  13. April 4, 2013

    Yes I guessed it.In fact used that method at first on a Buddha I have from Tibet.The active aspect is the ammonia content so going straight to the ammonia creates the effects within hours.

    There is a Zen Koan that goes-If you see the Buddha on the road kill him.Pee on him sounds a more gentle version.Now why did that pop into my mind?

  14. April 4, 2013

    Wasn’t that the model for the Beverly Hillbillies house?

    • April 4, 2013

      Ah, you’re remembering the curved stairway on a Hollywood soundstage — the exterior of the house was shot at 750 Bel Air Rd. A big old place, still there, looks kind of like a post office 😉

      • April 5, 2013

        Oh well!

  15. April 5, 2013

    Carmen Miranda V!
    Now that’s what I call an abode.
    Might I hazard that there were ‘ceuticals other than steroids doing the rounds when this abode was assembled.
    Yours ever
    The Perfumed Dandy

    • April 5, 2013

      It is gorgeous, and in the era perceptions and performance were probably altered by bootlegged hootch, reefer, and coke – but not the kind in the bottle.

  16. April 6, 2013

    I think I would look fabulous on that staircase. But a staircase like that calls for a new wardrobe…

    • April 6, 2013

      Oh yeah, nothing you would race up and down on wearing jeans and tennis shoes. My normal rate of speed, and I’m afraid my normal wardrobe 😉

  17. October 6, 2014

    I love Spanish revival. So Cali.

  18. October 11, 2014

    I could live there with no problems whatsoever. As for the decor – I’d lean it towards “early Vincent Price”.

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