Tuesday, March 23, 2010

License and Registration Please

Did the title make you think that maybe I was out popping wheelies and maybe going way too fast on my super cool bike you see above?  Ok, that's not really "my" bike, it belongs to my good friend Mogul in Germany.  Mogul isn't his real name of course but it's what I call him, but that's a story for a whole other post!

The reason my post has the title it does is because I decided to use something a little offbeat to decorate the walls in my family room/office.  By now, after seeing my bowling pins, the insulators, and all of the other wacky stuff I find cool and interesting, none of you will find my new decor all that surprising but even I have to admit that it isn't what everyone would choose to adorn the walls.


Last year, when we removed the two stoves and mantles we had in the house I was at a complete loss for where to hang our Christmas stockings.  Crazy woman that I am, I found this very cool horse pull that I've shown you before, as my mantle substitute.

I loved it's rustic charm and the fact that someone added hooks to it just made me think that it would be the perfect place to hang 4 stockings until we add on and put in a fireplace and mantle.  It looked wonderful throughout the holidays with the beautiful hand knitted stockings Mr. Tide's grandmother made for each of us, but afterwards it just looked a little lonely.  

So began the hunt for just the right thing to hang alongside my cool horse pull.  I thought about artwork, wooden signs, you name it, but nothing really struck my fancy.  Then one day a little light bulb went off inside my feeble brain.  License plates...that's the ticket, no pun intended!

But what kind of license plates, oh that part was easy, I knew just what I wanted.  The hard part would be finding just the right ones.  When you get a wild hair like I often do with these sorts of things, you just have to thank whoever thought up the internet and online auctions!  I went straight to Ebay and scored the first two after just a few months of looking.  My son wandered in and saw me bidding on old license plates and wondered what the heck I was doing.  I told him I was thinking about robbing banks and needed some spare plates for my getaway car.  He shrugged and went on his way, yeah he's grown up with me, so not much phases him!

The third one took a little more patience and searching but finally I had everything I wanted thanks to a great guy named Andrew Pang who has an appreciation for weird old stuff like I do, and who has an online store with license plates from everywhere and every year imaginable!! 

Having scored the trifecta of license plates I was ready to finish off that one lonely wall in our house and here are my plates and the finished project!

The first one I found on Ebay is for the year and state where my parents were married.  They were wed in November of 1953 in Maryland.  Ok, you might as well know that just finding a year and state match for their wedding was not good enough for someone as wacky as me.  It had to have a little something extra so see the numbers 265?  Well my mother's birthday was the 26th of the month, my father's the 25th of the same month, and our son Bugs is also born on the same day and month as my mother...so, this one was perfect!

Next, I had to find one for my in-laws who were married in Michigan in1958.  Although the numbers and letters aren't very relevant, the "water wonderland" is perfect since we live on the water...pretty cool eh?!

And the last one if for the year and state where Mr. Tide and I tied the knot.  We were married in Maryland in 1986, and see the numbers?  Well we were married in June of '86, and are you ready for my cuckoo for cocoa puffs brain, if you read the last two numbers backwards you get 6/86...the year and month we were married.  So if that doesn't make you think I'm nutty enough, the 9/87 bottom renewal sticker...well that's the month and year of our daughter, Angelfish's, birth!  You can call the guys with the white jackets for me now, but I'm lovin' these license plates!


So here they are, hanging in order with my parent's on the left, in-laws on the right, and ours at the very top.  Pretty darn cool, I think! 

I just love how they frame my little horse pull and provide just the oomph it needed.

As a junk and antique lovin' gal I just think these are the coolest things ever.  So what does the rest of my family think of my unique decorating style.  Well my son walked in after they were hung and said "Why are there license plates hanging on the wall?!"  I went in to my long explanation of the meaning behind each special license plate to which he simply replied, "Do you know how redneck it is to have our family tree represented in license plates hanging on the wall?!"  Yup honey, that's your family and you got half my genes!!

Do you have something meaningful hanging on your walls?  Do tell!

I'm linking to Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch!

Head over to Thrifty Decor Chick for a Before and After Party!

For more inspirations and transformations, head over to The Inspired Room!

It's Show and Tell Friday at My Romantic Home!

It's time for Transformation Thursday over at The Shabby Chic Cottage!


  1. I like it!!! I like it a lot!!!

  2. Love the way you invested your energy and achieved that perfect look! There is so much to the stories about the license plates...how could one not LOVE the look!

    Thanks for sharing!


  3. Don't ya just love it when inspiration hits for what would look perfect in a spot you've been wanting to fill?! That is a brilliant idea and I love the symbolism, but I also did crack up at your son's comment about the family tree! ~Lili

  4. Oh I love it Kat!! The last paragraph made me laugh out loud! I think your display is fabulous my dear!! ~ Tina x

  5. Such a great idea. Lovely!
    Have a sweet day. xo

  6. I think it's a very cool idea, redneck or not.

  7. You whacky woman! I love it!!

    I too have license tags on my wall. One is white and black and framed in a rustic black frame - was the tag off my Grandfather's first car. It's on the wall in my kitchen - goes lovely with the black and white enamelware I collect.

    The second one is bright blue with gold letters - came off Hubster's Grandma's car a looooooooong time ago after we rescued it from the garage and had to re-tag it. The third one is green with a bright emblazoned sunflower. We found it at one of the family farms or another - my memory fails me. It's somewhat beat up and bent - but lovely just the same.

    Those last two are on the third floor - one in J-boy's room and the other on the landing with the John Deere tractor collection he inherited from my Dad.

    Thanks for being a nut - and brave enough to share the nuttiness!!

    Robin Z

  8. I love your redneck art! Sometimes its the best! Hubs is going to love those MD plates :)

  9. You have a lovely blog. My hubby and I have a disagreement over what comprises yardart and yard junk. I win as long as I don't need his help. But the yard is MINE and I do what I want for the most part. The house is a different matter.
    Love your son's comments. Typical.

  10. it's fun to be different :)
    i really like what you did there.

  11. I really love meaningful decorations in a home. My Dad saved his father's license plates (front and rear) from the last car Grandpa owned. Daddy gave them to me. I hung one up on a wall in our back porch and sent the other to my cousin so that he could display it as well. Every time I come through the back door of our porch I see Grandpa's license plate and it brings back happy memories. Consequently, I love what you did as well!

    Susan and Bentley

  12. Great idea - our number plates are very boring here in N Ireland, but as we are holidaying in New England this summer, maybe I could find a few to bring home as souvenirs.

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  13. WAY COOL, and tell him Red Neck is really IN this year!!! Love it!

  14. I love it....I love it ALL....I guess that makes TWO crazy ladies then, huh?

    Easter Egg Cup Collection is My show n tell Stop by if you can.

    Have a glorious weekend.

  15. Beautiful! A friend of mine converted one of those wooden horse thingamajigs into a light fixture over their pool table! They have a FAB B&B in Petersburg, VA--http://www.thedestinyinn.com/!

  16. Oh gosh, I love it! Especially that it has so much meaning behind it. Your son's comment cracked me up!

    ~ Tracy

  17. Looks great - Love the unique rustic style the plates add to the wall! Very clever!

  18. They look wonderful and the fact that they're meaningful is definitely the icing on the cake!

  19. Hi! This looks like so much fun! I love seeing the olden license plates and you've put them to use in a very creative way!
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  20. Way to go!! How could anyone not love them! Not only do they look grat they have meaning behind them.

  21. Very cool that the dates and states have meaning for you, but that's the best thing about collecting things and using them in your home. They should have meaning to you. I don't think that means a trip with the men in white coats! : )

  22. Cute idea! I love the mule harness. Great finds!

    Stop by AtticMag this week for a Giveaway!

  23. Love what you did here! I have a bunch of vintage license plates in my garage and you've just given me food for thought!


  24. I love using old license plates on the walls. My boys (two of them) have some in their room to. We found one from 1932! It's all rusty but very cool looking. You wonder about what car that was on. Cute room!

  25. I also have license plates. I chose to collect only three... one from the birth year for me, my hubby and our son. All from Alabama because we were all born there. I love them. Love yours,too.

  26. Very cool! Thank you for sharing! :) Hope you can stop by when you get a chance!

  27. I think they are pretty darn cool too ! And you'll be set if you start robbing banks.

  28. I love it. I love license plates too and I must be a nut because I would see it as a sign that all those numbers mean something. Fantastic.

  29. That was funny! My son collected license plates when he younger. He always had them decorating his walls.


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