I’ve always had a love of vintage fruit crates and labels. The vibrant colors, the bold typography and graphics. In my twenties I came across wooden apple crates with their labels still intact at an estate sale and turned them into nightstands and bookshelves (my short lived shabby chic phase).
After covering the yellow and orange walls at the house I was anxious to get some art up. We all agreed that the artwork we put up should reflect the space and geography. My initial idea was to frame a collection of local vintage crate labels but Jason had a much grander idea: a large collage of labels mounted on wood in the shape of the state of Oregon. A showpiece.
He ran with it. My sole contribution to this project was the research of tracking down the labels. Perhaps it’s my graphic design background but I could pour over images of these old product labels for hours. We wanted to use only labels from the area and preferably originals. I searched etsy and ebay and purchased a few, then resorted to google images to print some high resolution images. But we didn’t have nearly enough to cover the piece so I started scouring local antique shops in the area but kept coming up short.
Then Jason had the brilliant idea of going straight to the source: the original packing houses in the Hood River Valley that were still in existence. He took a trip to Duckwall Fruit and Stadelman’s and after explaining his project they generously handed over a file of original labels.
Using a grid format, Jason mapped out the state on a piece of plywood before cutting it out:
Piecing together the layout:
Last step was a clear art resin coating over the top:
The finished piece! Measuring nearly four feet in width it fills the space nicely: