Room No.6: Weekend project Design-on-a-dime Makeover


1925: Anna Peck  (the madam) stayed here.

1950: The Polish Gymnast-turned-chef

1970s: The Latvians home & the caretaker’s room.

2007-now: Camp Wandawega lodge guest room



We needed  this room (used often by family) to be traditional, comfortable- and filled with heirlooms & found artifacts from camp. This room is the compilation of years worth of collecting pieces  that i knew would eventually get used. The best advice I ever got: Buy what you love, and dont worry if it matches. You’ll find a home for it when the time is right. David was happy that when it came time to outfit this room, we already had everthing to go in it (sans endtable + 2 lamps). Good rational for future hoarding!



THE CROSS. When we bought camp, every room has a cross in it. (a tradition from the Latvian era).

THE BRASS TRUMPET LAMPS. Elkhorn is famous for a horn making factory. 1950s birch bark shades.

THE BED. From a neighbor’s yard sale. It was in a pile of individual slats. David glued it back together like a jigsaw.

THE RUG. A gift from friend who owns a turn of the century log cabin mini mansion in northern Wisco (originally part of the MARS family estate). Every room was carpeted with this in the 50’s. Who just replaced it all, and saved us the choice piece (we promised him over a decade ago that wed design a room around it if he saved us a scrap)

THE ART WALL. David as a toddler. A plaque from my grandmother. A painting found here in the attic. Local thrift store scores. A drawing by Charlie.

THE LIGHT. David’s uncle works maintenance at one of the oldest high schools in Chicago. When they where replacing the old original lighting, he saved us a couple of the originals. We’ve had them for over a decade & finally found a home for them.

OLD BONES. Sanded the original pine plank to the grain. stained. refurbished the old 1920s ‘dry-board’ (which predates drywall). wood blinds.

THE DRESSER. One of the survivors that we found here when we bought camp. 1930s. We are starting a collection of antique Camp W photos & postcards under the glass.

THE FELT BED RUNNER. An embroidered parade flag from A Future Farmer of America Club, circa 1950. A junk shop down south by my hometown. A good reminder of roots that run deep.

THE MIRROR. a 1860’s hand-carved black forrest oak portrait frame that I picked up at flea market in Prague. (wrapped every piece of clothing around it to bring it home in trunk & turn it into a mirror). I also picked up the antler mounts from there as well- for $4 bucks each. & the ‘tramp-art’ sewing box on the dresser. Same turn-of-the-century era, hand carved.

THE PLAQUES: Thrift scores. A bear head. A archery trophy. An antler mount.

THE BOOKS: Vintage Latvian volumes found at camp- remnants the priest left behind.

CHAIR: Salvation Army on Grand avenue. Came from University of Chicago. A vintage Windsor chair stamped with the insignia.

SIDETABLES: etsy & ebay. 1930’s ‘twig tables’. – the most expensive items in this room. $60 & $90. i cringed a little at paying that much. and that we didnt find them ‘found free or flea’…. but loved the sloppy, handmade quality of them- and because they where never ‘built to last’ – they are now rare, so uncommon at thrift store.


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