Lainey and Ole are 2 of the 4 dogs you may see running around the shop or staring at you from the windows. They love protecting the store from squirrels, barking at delivery drivers and taking naps with their favorite toys. Now if we could only get them to do some work around here ;)
Even though it may be slow at times things are continuing to move forward around the store! This week we have secured several, local treat vendors that we are excited to feature in store and our muralist, Tom continues to make progress on the beautiful mural that will be in front of the store. Check back for a blog update on the progress of the mural in the future!
Have a great week!
We are excited to finally be on Facebook and to use this platform to share updates, sneak peeks of the store and information about our grand opening. Speaking of sneak peeks, FOX21 stopped by last week for an interview and you can see a glimpse into the store during their interview. The link is on our Facebook if you want to check it out :) Please like our Facebook page here https://www.facebook.com/boathousemn.
We have also started the process of filling the store with merchandise. We started by filling the docks near the windows with some cool, summer merchandise. Check out some sneak peek pictures of the dock areas below.
If you're in the neighborhood make sure to peek in the windows and see the displays for yourself! Give us a smile and a wave if we are in the shop working. We love that we are starting to see more people out and about in Lincoln Park!
We cannot wait to have you all in store and shopping soon!
His name is Ole and this is his nametag! The old boat he is sitting in will be on display in the store. I photoshopped the stormy seas behind him. I’m having fun with all the nametags!
Have a great week!
We enjoyed a delicious dinner of fresh crappie tonight thanks to my husband Mark's brother Neil. They were really, really good! I had tarter sauce on the table and asked my brother Mark, who joined us for dinner, if he wanted some and he said, "Not when the fish taste this good." Thanks Neil!
Work continues on the build out. the inside is down to finishing details. Tomorrow Tom Napoli, a well-known Duluth muralist will begin painting a mural on the front of the building! I am very excited to see him working!
Enjoy the beautiful weather and stay safe!
I always wanted my own store and this was the start!
We had an old, single-car garage moved onto our lot on the North Shore Scenic Drive (old Highway 61). We installed a wooden floor, replaced the original garage door with the French doors, did a facelift on the exterior, added some lights and it was a perfect little store. We held many weekend, occasional sales over the years and met lots of great people from all over the world.
I really hope to see some of our customers from the Scenic Drive Boathouse at our new store!
Progress continues every week on the build-out. New front doors were installed today and other tasks are gradually being completed. I will be able to start filling the shelves soon!
Have a great week.
Six new windows were installed on the front of the building this week! I cant' believe how bright and cheery the store looks now. Next week the new doors will be installed. Work on the rest of the building front will be happening soon.
Activity is increasing in Lincoln Park as businesses open or prepare to reopen. We are hoping to open in June if all goes well.
Enjoy the sunny weather this week!
I’ve enjoyed working at the shop everyday since we purchased the building January 3. During January and February Jack (previous owner of the building and owner of Carr’s Hobbies) continued to run the store and sell out his remaining merchandise while Mark (my husband) and I worked in the office and basement. Everyday we’d take breaks, talk and joke with each other.
Jack was always willing to answer my questions and give me advice. He was a very wise man who lived an interesting life. I loved listening to him and I told him more than once that he should write a book. Mark also cared deeply for Jack. He told me he thought Jack was probably the nicest man he ever met.
In March and April Jack would stop in every-so-often and we would visit. He was having some health issues, but I thought he was improving. When Covid-19 struck and we were self-quarenteening, we didn’t see Jack, but he called a couple of times.
This past Saturday I called Jack to catch-up and tell him how things were progressing with the store. He didn’t answer, so I left a message. Since it was the fishing opener Saturday, I figured he was fishing. I found out later that day, that Jack had died Saturday morning. I was crushed. I considered him a very special friend and hoped that he, his wife and my husband and I would be able to spend fun times together in the coming years.
I regret the fact that I didn’t call him sooner. I hope he knew how much I respected him and enjoyed knowing him.
I could write much more about this wonderful man, who honorably served his country in the military for seven years, who enriched the lives of his customers and friends through his generous spirit and who never really grew up when it came to toys and hobby crafts.
The last couple of days at the store have been very sad. I see constant reminders of Jack. He was a very good man. I can’t wait to see him again.
The Minnesota Fishing Opener and Mother’s Day will be celebrated this weekend. We hope the fish are biting and Mothers everywhere are treated to a day of special appreciation, relaxation, presents and pampering!
These 1950s showcases really needed a facelift. At some point in their 70-year history, they were painted. My original plan was to repaint them to match the Boathouse decor. Then I discovered there was beautiful walnut wood beneath the paint and I decided to restore them.
Here are the steps to the restoration.
Left, the old paint was some of the most stubborn I have ever tried to remove. I tried two different paint strippers and neither worked. Then I tried using a heat gun. This worked great! The heat softened the paint and then I could easily scrape it off. Unfortunately there was a black coating beneath the paint that would not come off. The photo on the left shows me sanding this black material with 80 grit sandpaper. this worked well. After sanding with the 80 grit I sanded with finer and finer grits until the wood was very smooth. The next step was to clean off all of the sanding residue with a tack cloth. Center, Both ends of one case seemed to be lighter than the front, so I stained both ends with a matching walnut stain. Right, I used a semi-gloss poly finish. It is always exciting to see the beauty of the wood come out at this stage.
Attention to detail is very important in any refinishing project. The corners and top edges on the cases are incised making them difficult to strip. In the Before picture the corner looks blotchy. I decided to paint these areas with Burnt Umber artist's acrylic paint. The after photo shows how dramatically this added effort improved the finished showcases.
Restoring furniture is very rewarding. There are many helpful tutorials on YouTube. Give it a try sometime!
We’ve been installing a new decorative ceiling for the past 11 days. The work is slow and tedious, but the new ceiling is really pretty. We should be done by Saturday.
We are hoping that most/all of the build out will be done within the next few weeks. Then we can start to stock the store.
I just refinished two, mid-century display showcases and will post step-by-step photos next week. They turned out really nice!
The captain's Blog
Ahoy! Visit our blog the first Tuesday of every month. We share fun information about the shop, exciting events in Duluth and Lincoln Park, restoration tips & tricks and more!