A Level of Craftsmanship


Here is an overview of a most remarkable modern Vardo build by Greg Ryan.  Not only does it document an amazing build, it is a really well put together little film as well.  I wish I could hit this level of craftsmanship someday.  This is one that will really inspire the budding builder out there.

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Motor Camper from Texas ca. 1920

As determined by the Texas inspection sticker on the radiator (yes the image blows up that big).


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Stone Age Bow

George Crawford:

If you’re interested in making a simple “stone age” bow with the simplest tools here’s a fine video by Connor O’Malley to get you started. If that sparks your interest and you want to delve a little farther, there here are a few older posts about bow making that I’ve put together: http://paleotool.com/?s=bow+making

Originally posted on Natural Skills:

Here’s a video of a bow making project from the fall.  Working wood with stone age tools isn’t very hard, it just takes some patience and creativity.  Give it a try!

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A 1926 Home Built Camper Truck

An early tiny house on wheels… and a family selfie.

W.M. O'Donnell & family of Detroit in bungalow auto, 2/1/26.

W.M. O’Donnell & family of Detroit in bungalow auto, 2/1/26.

The Library of Congress has some pretty amazing stuff.  I rarely find what I came for but I always find something pretty spectacular.  This house (click to enlarge) is quite a piece of woodworking.  Shingle siding all glass door, sturdy balcony, beautiful windows, under storage, and what I think is a pull out pan box on the back.  The O’Donnell’s were certainly traveling in style.

The amount of joinery that went into the door and windows is probably more than found in most houses today.

W.M. O’Donnell & family of Detroit in bungalow auto, 2/1/26

The amount of joinery that went into the door and windows is probably more than is found in most houses today.  I really like the old basement windows used as storage access underneath.  As usual, I could find no interior photos but I suspect it was well appointed.

Original files can be found: http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/npc2008007978/and http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/npc2008007936/

If this isn’t inspiring, I don’t know what is.

Oh, and nearby photo caught my eye in the Library:

Mlle. Rae with garter flask, 1/26/26.

Mlle. Rae with garter flask, 1/26/26.

I’ve never known a woman with a garter flask before…

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Letting Go of Accomplishments

George Crawford:

headerThis goes against the grain of what so may of us are taught, but it says so much.

Originally posted on Becoming a Minimalist:

In our morning manager’s meeting the other day we had to go around the room and tell of our greatest accomplishments. I pondered and then stammered briefly about being able to let go of what people think of me. At first the question raised some insecurity in me. Had I accomplished enough by the age of 50? By whose standards? People mentioned their degrees, job titles, and owning homes. All I could think was how little any of that mattered to me. Goals are great and getting an education or a dream job is always a positive thing of course but I found myself looking beyond all of that. I remembered when my mother died. She was a great woman that was loved by many in her community as well as her family. She had a bookshelf full of self help books though, that showed her insecurities. How could such…

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