The Devil Queen

How my wife and I sold our souls to the Queen Anne Victorian we tried to save.

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Location: Crow Mountain, Arkansas, United States

Synopsis: This is a cautionary tale. A seriously disturbed couple find the charming, old ruin of a Queen Anne Victorian in Russellville, Arkansas, and buy it for $1.00. They tore the roof off, cut it in half, and had it moved to some land they owned sixteen miles away because they didn't know any better. Since then, they have hired and fired contractors, had all of their tools stolen, re-wired, re-plumbed, insulated, and essentially rebuilt the entire house. Their only problem is that after four years it still isn't finished. Now they are tired, broke, and wonder what in the hell it is they've done to themselves. And, it's haunted.
(Last updated on April 3, 2008)

Press: Russellville Courier Article - December 2003, HGTV website article, AP story - October 2006, and Victorian Homes Magazine - February 2008 (link coming soon).
Art: From time to time, I receive requests for my art. If you would like to look at more of my art, go to The Failed Artist. If you would like to buy my art, email me. I am more than happy to answer any questions you might have. Thanks!

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Rejuvenation, Suck This!

Okay, I don't really have a grudge against Rejuvenation lighting. They make and sell magnificent period and replica lighting, and I have the highest respect for them since I read this blog post by the owner of the company.

And, while I really like how most of our "Made in China" lighting from Lowe's looks, I can't help think of how glorious the heft and weight of solid brass would be compared to the thin, mystery alloy-metal of our lighting. Sure, with the exception of some of the ceiling fans, we really consider most of this lighting temporary. When we sell the book and movie rights to our home improvement nightmare, we're planning to buy some mighty fine antique chandeliers at the very least.

My longing for the fabulous lighting of days long passed has been fed one tasty bit though. With all the major interior work finished, the last light fixture I installed was this one.

We bought this nearly a year ago at an antique shop in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. It is a 1920's light fixture with period, blown-glass shades. If I remember correctly, they were made by a guy or company named Fry or Frey. I'll have to dig the tag that came with it out of the box and have a second look to know for sure.

As usual, the pictures just don't do it justice. My wife and I stood utterly transfixed when this baby came on for the first time. So, until we can afford more, we can stand in the foyer and get our high-dollar lighting fix.

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Anonymous davidLBC said...

That is a nice fixture. There is nothing like authentic materials and finishes. Modern fixtures at Lowes are anything but. Plus the new ones are subject to passing fads like "oil rubbed bronze" finish, which I love, but not when it's simulated with brown paint.

I turn to ebay for all my light fixture purchases. I've bought all kinds of period fixtures like schoolhouse lights, milk glass and paiste sconces, beaded-chain fixtures, and multi-armed ceiling fixtures like yours with iridescent shades. Most of them can be had for $30 to $50 (many for as little as $10!). Shipped to your door about $45 to $75 total. What can you buy at Lowes for that money? It's a good way to outfit bedrooms, bathrooms and the kitchen. Then spend a little more money on a fixture like yours for living and dining rooms.

Your fixture would probably be closer to $125 because of the shades.

I have a roll of cloth covered Sundial Wire to rewire some fixtures, but most don't need it.

10:51 AM  
Anonymous Patricia said...

The light is absolutely beautiful. It looks magnificent!

And to DavidLBC: I agree, the painted on oil-rubbed bronze is a total crock, same goes for "cast iron" that comes out of a spray can, what a rip-off.

1:57 PM  
Anonymous Julia said...


Almost all of our light fixtures are hideous. We've purchased three new ones (2 bedroom type, one kitchen) but none of them really have any wonderful style to them. We can't really afford style and just have to go with what little choice there is left after we disregard all the boob lights (as I like to call them, you know which ones I mean) at IKEA and the home improvement stores.

9:41 AM  
Blogger John said...

David, thanks for the tip. I'll have to check out what they have. I've bought a little of everything else on eBay, I don't know why I didn't think about that.

Patricia, thanks. I agree, nothing says classy like spray-on.

Julia, thanks! Ah, the good old boob lights. We call them that too, for obvious reasons.

10:04 AM  
Blogger Marye said...

that fixture is fabulous! I got one for my main hall on ebay and a couple of years later found a wall fixture that matched! Your house is looking great!

3:41 PM  

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