When you live in a Lustron, you’re part of a story. The tale begins in 1948, when the Lustron Corporation debuted its prefabricated, all-steel homes manufactured in a former airplane plant in Columbus, Ohio. The company imagined an American landscape drenched in seafoam, pink, harvest gold, and the other enamel hues of its mail-order ranches, but it sold only about 2,500 over three years.
Photographer Charles “Chuck” Mintz picks up the Lustron story today, documenting people who are holding onto these quirky, increasingly rare homes. He has traveled the country over the past couple years shooting portraits of more than 100 inhabitants. After the jump, I’ll show you more samples from his series, including his shot of me and Andrea on our patio.
If you’re like me, your 2015 “clean slate” rapidly became scrawled with a to-do list. In the calm that followed our holiday travel, Andrea and I decided to tackle some home projects. Trouble is, that quiet time in early January became stressful as I imagined ALL the improvements our Lustron needs. The more I thought about my punch list, the more it sprawled (get better kitchen lighting, clean out the closets, shape the topiary pine, find the perfect fireplace, and on and on).
Just as DIY paralysis was creeping in, I remembered some advice from a former teacher. Knowing that long to-do lists are overwhelming — and often lead this gal to plant her head in the sand — she told me to focus on a single task each day. Do one thing today to move yourself forward, I recalled her saying, even if it’s as small as returning an e-mail you’ve been putting off. I decided to break my epic home enhancement list into single servings too, designing kitschy notes to announce the day’s chosen task. It was a fun project that tightened my grip on Photoshop drawing, and . . . it’s working! Here’s a sample of back burner projects we wrapped this month:
Want to check off some boxes of your own? Follow me after the jump to print sheets of to-do notes with midcentury style!