Rebuilding the Past—A Portal to the 1950's

Be an explorer and take part in my journey as I move, unpack, and install loads of killer retro items that I have collected and stored for decades in anticipation of this project. This site will chronicle the saga of building a “sort of 50's movie set town” in a big metal Quonset hut. I will also be including some useful blogs along the way that show practical aspects of the builds and set ups for different parts of the town: carpentry, framing, sign-making, restoration work when necessary, distressing and creating some patina on newly built pieces.

My funds are very limited for this project... but for the last 30 plus years I have hunted through junk stores and picked through trash to find parts of the past to build a giant life sized vignette. 

Ghost Town’s concept is the opposite of the recreated 50’s diner-type displays, where cardboard cut-outs of James Dean, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis and shiny restored cars are on display. I would call the project a barn find, rat rod garage, Twilight Zone, vintage sci-fi, Stephen King, post-apocalyptic 1950's movie set prop house. Imagine a place in the past where the inhabitants just walked away, and left their stuff behind. 

Now it’s just a matter of assembling my collection into vignettes with cars, signs, gas pumps, parking meters, furniture, mannequins, appliances, and vintage arcade stuff to bring this vision to life. I will also be including my collection of vintage appliances (automatic washers and dryers, fridges, stoves, and TV sets) that I have collected throughout the years.

Ghost Town will house built-to-scale storefronts, allowing you to enter and experience vintage store displays and vintage products and wares on shelves. As you look out the decorated storefront windows you will see 50's and early 60’s cars are parked alongside parking meters, traffic lights, and sidewalks. 

The last picture shows a rough floor plan layout.  There will be a diner, gas station and sundries shop combo, used car lot, spartan mansion trailer (guest house and office), appliance store, Woolworth's type store and a tiki bar arcade combo.  I am also going to try to squeeze in a drive in movie set up against the rear wall.

50's ghost town floor plan layout