Do you remember when I shared a picture of these vintage blueprints we found at the Randolph Street Market this summer?
They are blueprints for the iconic Brach’s Candy Factory that stood in Chicago from 1923 to 2014. We bought a book of them and have been trying to decide what to do with them. Not only are they are a cool piece of history from our great city, once known as the “Candy Capital of the World,” but the deep indigo color is gorgeous. (A bit of trivia for you: in 2008, the factory made a cameo in the film The Dark Knight, where it served as Gotham Hospital. Part of the factory was destroyed for a scene where the Joker sets off a large bomb at the hospital.)
I really wanted to use more than one of the prints – since they are each unique to a different floor or part of the factory, and they are big (!) 35×24 – so doing so would require a big wall. (I actually think that 6 or 9 of these hung in a grid pattern would be amazing in the right space – a huge two or three story wall.) We decided to hang them above our staircase – the biggest blank wall we have! Voila!
Now, I apologize, as these are extremely difficult to take pictures because they are so reflective. Here is a better angle but you can see our kitchen table and chairs reflected in the bottom one.
I am so happy with how they turned out! I wasn’t sure at first how I wanted to frame them. I really didn’t want anything to take away from the prints themselves. I had seen this pretty brass hardware on Etsy from a shop called Highland Hardware. They are designed to hold together sheets of acrylic. Clean. Simple. Perfect!
I brought them to my local frame shop, (Boulevard Fine Art) along with the prints, and they had the acrylic cut for me and even assembled it all.
Brass and Navy is always a winning combo in my book!
And here is the view looking up from our kitchen …
I love when artwork has special meaning to a family. Both Dan and I come from a long-line of Chicagoans and are always fascinated by our city’s great history. Dan’s career in commercial real estate has put him in front of so many of Chicago’s old buildings and together we love driving the neighborhoods and checking them out. Not only that, but we have been going to Randolph Street Market for over 12 years – it’s kind of a tradition for us every year and we try to go at least a couple times each summer to treasure hunt! These prints are definitely one of our favorite treasures!
If you’d like to do something similar with your own photographs, I suggest checking out Artifact Uprising. They offer a similar float frame and you can upload your own photograph to their site. Because I was working with original pieces – this option didn’t work for me – but I would definitely consider it for favorite photographs.
What do you think? What’s your favorite piece of artwork that has special meaning to your family?