Untraditional Inspiration: The Odd in Your Town

Untraditional Inspiration: The Odd in Your Town

Abby Stone
Jul 16, 2009

071609-roadside01.jpgDesign websites, magazines, stores, art museums and galleries -- these are all traditional sources for home inspiration. But, at least in our home, design inspiration sometimes comes from less traditional sources -- the arrangement or taste of food, an outfit we saw, a piece of music -- and, often, it's the macabre and the odd that scramble our sense of what goes with what, challenge us to consider things in a new light and make us rethink our home's design. The lesser well-known tourist spots in your town are a good place to start and Roadside America is a good place to find them...

Roadside America was our go-to spot when we moved to Los Angeles via car over a decade ago; our cross-country road trip was scattered with visits to the Giant Ball of Twine, stalagtites that resembled fried eggs and a version of Stonehenge made from upright Caddies. But you don't have to leave your own city to jolt your mind. Here in Los Angeles we're planning visits this summer to Laserium, The California Museum of Neon Art, Watts Towers (no, we've never stopped to take a close look at them), the Fake Forest Cafeteria downtown and the LA Coroner's Office Gift Shop. What kind of weird stuff can you find in your area? Go to Roadside America and be prepared to rattle your mind.

[images of Watts Towers, LA Coroner's Gift Shop and The Museum of Neon Art from the Flickr pools of dana graves; caveman 92223; steve lyon, respectively, with a Creative Commons License; Laserium image by Ken Hively for LA Times]

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