Let's talk about cardboard Christmas houses and accessories

Visit our Contributors' Pages:
Visit Family Christmas Online Visit Howard Lamey's own web page, LittleGlitterHouses.com Click to Sign Up for Maria Cudequest's Collectibles Blog
Visit Family Christmas Online Click to visit Papa Ted's Place - the ultimate cardboard Christmas house resource. Click to return to the Old Christmas Tree Lights Table of Contents Page



Note: To ask a question, sign up for our "Christmas Times" newsletter, or learn how
to apply for membership to this forum, please visit our Contact page.


Note: All content on this forum is Copyright (c) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 by Paul D. Race
and by the posters who have contributed specific content. All material is for your personal use only. No content
or plans may be republished or sold, nor may any plans be used to make products to sell without prior written
permission from Paul D. Race and the individual who contributed the content or plan in question.
For permissions or questions about this policy, please contact us using our Contact page.
It is currently Sun Aug 18, 2019 11:47 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 6 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:06 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2015 4:37 pm
Posts: 721
8/1/2019
THE GREAT COCONUT MYSTERY SOLVED?
I started making my own coconut for my massive collection of vintage putz houses back in 2013. Long before I was a member of the “Cardboard Christmas” forum, I made this kooky stuff and had no idea anyone else was doing it either. I didn't join the said forum until 2015. At that time, I tried every combination of cellulose-type product I could find: pine tree sawdust, rice, wheat, and even barley straw. I even tried making it out of polished cotton strands and other natural fibers as well, thinking it was some kind of floss (?), like the old ads of putz house villages used to say in their catalogs. I had a nominal amount of success with the “straws”, as others have, but-- it just didn't 100% exactly “match” the original like I anticipated though. But, when I transferred here to the Philippines, I thought I could figure out the mystery of it's true origin by getting hold of the local natural resources here. Since “Asia” in general has lots of the same, or similar flora, (since most of the vintage putz houses we know and love are from Japan), I was hoping to finally crack the code. I never really believed it was made out of anything I had used, or seen used previously. Well, long story short-- I didn't figure it out at all. My wife did!
Several days ago, my wife went to her hometown suburb by the capital city of Manila and secretly took one of my little houses that she admired. It was a little 1950's “fuzzy top” she called it. She had told me umpteen times before that she thought the stuff was made out of something tropical, not a field grain/straw. She was gone for a few days and just got back this last weekend with some shocking, yet exciting news. She knew I had been a little down lately and wanted to give me a “pick-me-up” by surprising me with some cool crafty stuff to embellish my little newly-built putz house with, thus; taking my little “fuzzy” with her. But-- little did she know, that she would stumble on what could be one of the greatest mysteries of all “putz” time. The “Holy Grail” of the putz house industry from days gone past right in her own proverbial backyard.
She had tracked down a family-owned craft material/supply company not too far from where she used to live by many years ago, hoping it was still around. She was actually friends with one of the owner's daughters that she used to chum with in school back in the 1980/90's.
Well, there it was, still in business after all these years. According to my wife, the business had been around since the turn of the last century (almost 100 years ago) and consistently owned by the same family throughout its history. There she met a man and told him about knowing one of the owner's daughters, and they were happy to meet her and invited her in. Once in, he gave her a tour of their facilities. She told me it was a quaint building, but well stocked with all kinds of craftwares that she herself had never even seen before, but-- one thing caught her eye: It was these big, round, twined balls of some kind of thick, stringy substance in every color you could imagine. She was a little thrown back at it and she asked the man what it was. He said it was “processed coconut husks”. Once after the initial shock, she asked him what they used it for. He said: “Oh, it's used for a myriad of crafting mediums, like making slippers, purses, hats, and handbags, etc”. He continued on to say because of its superlative strength, it would last for literally decades before losing color, or breaking down.
She told me what she thought after arriving home as she stood there according to her: “This is what my dear husband Clinton has been searching for all of these years, and now it's right in front of me!”Needless to say, she was stoked beyond belief, but-- this isn't even the “end of the story” yet folks-- there is more...
After looking over all of the beautiful, glowing, colorful, coconut husk product, she gently pulled out of her purse my little “fuzzy” house. The man looked at it with curiosity and said: “Hey, that's white coconut husk on that little house roof ma'am”. He also said, “As I mentioned before, the husk has a long staying power. We don't even know how long it can last, but my grandmother still has a purse that was made from this material way back in the 1950's. All woven by hand. He also said that their family has been shipping their product all over Asia since their opening back in the early 1900's, so-- it makes sense that it hit the shores of Japan, right?
My wife knew and believed beyond a shadow of a doubt that this was the “coveted coconut” from history long lost in the sands of time, but now found anew again! She asked to purchase some, but he said no, just take whatever you need and if you want more later on, you can order it from us in any color you desire, even in custom colors. She asked if they had white, and he said, “Sure, we have plenty of that, it's our biggest seller for hats”. Oh boy, she thought once again, my hubby will be nothing short of elated! Before she left, she asked the gentleman with a wry smile: “How do you make this stuff?” He said with a sheepish grin: “Family secret ma'am, sorry!”
When she got it home to me a few days ago, she had the BIGGEST smile on her face I've ever seen. I asked “what's up with you smiley?” And she said “close your eyes” and of course I did. Then after she motioned to me to open them, I just about fainted! Then, after my initial shock, I needed to turn it into my favorite putz house embellishment, REAL, AUTHENTIC, COCONUT (husks that is)!
I didn't have a power chopper to finely grind it with (left that back home in the good ol' USA!) but, that didn't stop me. I pulled out my biggest, sharpest, shears and got to work. As you can see, the results in the pictures of my newest putz house build below tell the story in detail. It really gives off a very shiny, almost “glowing” effect from it. As far as I am concerned, “the great coconut mystery solved” (no thanks to Scooby Doo and his madcap gang of course!) My wife and myself are 100% convinced that this is the real deal. She has some great contacts in Manila now for this product and she will be going back there and meeting with a shipping company to figure out how to get this stuff sent out to the USA. It's all in God's hands now, we shall see. We hope you all will wish us luck in our new found endeavors to make our dreams into reality. I also hope you enjoyed the read...


Attachments:
coco house1.jpg
coco house1.jpg [ 185.47 KiB | Viewed 199 times ]
coco string house.jpg
coco string house.jpg [ 95.06 KiB | Viewed 199 times ]
Nu-Coco1 8.2.19.jpg
Nu-Coco1 8.2.19.jpg [ 139.92 KiB | Viewed 199 times ]
coco house4.jpg
coco house4.jpg [ 61.95 KiB | Viewed 199 times ]
coco house5.jpg
coco house5.jpg [ 91.66 KiB | Viewed 199 times ]

_________________
"To all that is small"....

www.facebook.com/groups/nutz4putz
Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:37 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 02, 2011 4:27 pm
Posts: 1497
Clinton, is that the same as this stuff? Sometimes called Coire? https://www.amazon.com/Coconut-Husk-Fib ... way&sr=8-6

Most manufacturers claim there's a long bleaching process to get it "lily white." Are you saying that white occurs in nature?

Sorry for all the questions. That would be cool if we can recreate it here using products like the one on Amazon.

- Paul


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 5:43 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 02, 2011 4:27 pm
Posts: 1497
Here's some that appears naturally white, wholesale from India. Apparently the long prep period has more to do with separating the fibers than the color:

https://www.ec21.com/product-details/Co ... 90448.html

Thanks again. Please let us know how your trials work out.

Paul


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:04 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Sep 16, 2011 9:29 am
Posts: 164
Here was my reply to Clinton... MYSTERY NOT SOLVED Even with these pictures I can tell it's not what the Japanese artists used back in the 1930's. Of course you know that I worked 2 hard years back in 2007 rediscovering what they really used. After those two years I was happy with the results and that I had rediscovered the original material. I started selling my newly rediscovered Coconut in 2010 Coconut, the word used to describe this texture coating was a nickname given because it resembled shredded coconut. It has nothing whatsoever to do with real coconut. Our good friend Barbara Lovejoy gave it this nickname way back around 2000 Your product looks neat and can serve as a substitute but it's not Coconut. Take a microscope and compare the two products side by side, they will have nothing in common. So the mystery is not solved but when the analysis comes back from the University of Wisconsin-Madison we'll have an exacting material match. But I like your new material.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:12 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2015 4:37 pm
Posts: 721
Hello Paul. Thanks so much for chiming in. My wife did actually ask him what the material originally was and according to him it is the very "top" of the coconut tree by the branches where they harvest the said product. He says it is very stringy, and greenish-white in color when first extracted, but eventually turns to a jaundice-like hue as it dries. According to my wife, he was informative about obtaining it, but he did not go into detail on the manufacturing process other than like you said it does take quite a bit of time and special processes to make it into what they market to the wholesalers. I will sell the said product after I have mechanically chopped it up into a more finer substance, along with a proper screening of the bigger pieces out and repackage it under a totally different name. I will also definitely keep you posted here about our progress and post more pictures of this amazing product :)

_________________
"To all that is small"....

www.facebook.com/groups/nutz4putz


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Aug 03, 2019 5:01 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2015 4:37 pm
Posts: 721
UPDATE--

My wife has contacted a good friend through her network (she used to be the head chef for a famous "gun shooters club" in Manila) that knows a person who runs the chemical analysis lab for the most prestigious university in the Philippines. She will take my 1950's "fuzzy house", and two of my fully covered 1930's coconut houses to have the cellulosic fibers tested and have the results published. Hopefully, she will be able to go there in the next few weeks. Keep your fingers crossed for me!
:mrgreen:

_________________
"To all that is small"....

www.facebook.com/groups/nutz4putz


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 6 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron




Click to see sturdy Lionel(r) trains that are perfect for your Christmas tree.



Note: To ask a question, sign up for our "Christmas Times" newsletter, or learn how
to apply for membership to this forum, please visit our Contact page.


Note: All content on this forum is Copyright (c) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 by Paul D. Race
and by the posters who have contributed specific content. All material is for your personal use only. No content
or plans may be republished or sold, nor may any plans be used to make products to sell without prior written
permission from Paul D. Race and the individual who contributed the content or plan in question.
For permissions or for questions about this policy, please contact us using our Contact page.



Visit our affiliated sites:
- Christmas Memories and Collectibles -
Visit the FamilyChristmasOnline site. Visit Howard Lamey's glitterhouse gallery, with free project plans, graphics, and instructions. Visit Papa Ted Althof's extensive history and collection of putz houses, the largest and most complete such resource on the Internet.. Click to return to the Old Christmas Tree Lights Table of Contents Page Click to sign up for Maria Cudequest's craft and collectibles blog.
Click to visit Fred's Noel-Kat store.
- Family Activities and Crafts -
Click to see reviews of our favorite family-friendly Christmas movies. Free, Family-Friendly Christmas Stories Decorate your tree the old-fashioned way with these kid-friendly projects. Free plans and instructions for starting a hobby building vintage-style cardboard Christmas houses. Click to find free, family-friendly Christmas poems and - in some cases - their stories. Traditional Home-Made Ornaments
- Trains and Hobbies -
Visit Lionel Trains. Free building projects for your vintage railroad or Christmas village. Click to see Thomas Kinkaded-inspired Holiday Trains and Villages. Big Christmas Train Primer: Choosing and using model trains with holiday themes Building temporary and permanent railroads with big model trains Click to see HO scale trains with your favorite team's colors.
- Music -
Carols of many countries, including music, lyrics, and the story behind the songs Wax recordings from the early 1900s, mostly collected by George Nelson.  Download them all for a 'period' album.
Best-loved railroad songs and the stories behind them.
Heartland-inspired music, history, and acoustic instrument tips. Own a guitar, banjo, or mandolin?  Want to play an instrument?  Tips to save you money and time, and keep your instrument playable. Own a guitar, banjo, or mandolin?  Want to play an instrument?  Tips to save you money and time, and keep your instrument playable.



Click to trains that commemorate your team!

Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group