It’s that time of year again where everyone gets together, grills hot dogs, and tries to blow everything up but their hands.
This year July 4th falls on an awkward day, Thursday. That means some people, with their hands hopefully completely still intact, have to get back on the production wagon the Friday after festivities.
As is our custom we’ve asked so you don’t have to. So without further ado (and even fewer explosion jokes related to limb safety) here is our list of prop houses who will have their doors open for you this Friday, July 5th:
There ain’t no rest for the wicked, and apparently many prop houses too, for the coming Monday before the 4th of July!
For specific prop houses, check out the list below. All of the following will be open for at least partial hours starting in the morning:
For a longer list of prop houses on Debbies Book, you can check it out here:
May everyone have a fantastic 4th of July! Specifically for those lucky few where it’s an option, may you enjoy your four day weekend!
As American as John Wayne and Apple Pie. It can be as over the top fantastical as the Wild Wild West (steampunk anyone?!?) or as gritty as The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.
There are countless productions that need the look of the Untamed West, from your run-of-the-mill Western to a contemporary but remote Mexican village. But what prop houses do you get these items from, and where can you film them?
Caravan West Productions
The absolute go-to for Western Dressing. From hand props like straight razers, whiskey flasks, and authentic Native American items including pottery, tomahawks, beadwork to a full blown Western filming location within the Los Angeles studio zone that includes an old barn, a 19th century house and mining shacks. Period weaponry to fit the times, wardrobe, animal skins and all manner of other dressing are at your fingertips in their inventory as well.
Omega/Cinema Props, CP Valley & CP Two
Western barrels, horse troughs, water pumps, cast iron stoves, Western tools and oil lanterns. For decades Omega has been collecting props to fulfill production needs, and Westerns are certainly one of them. Call them up to find out what location you need to swing by to cover your needs.
A prop house that specializes in horror and dark themed props has Western Dressing? You betcha. Apothecary props, rattlesnake props, animal and animal bone props, gallows and more are available at Dapper Cadaver. Servicing the Haunted House circuit for years has encouraged them to amass many Western items to cover your needs.
Jackson Shrub Supply
Split rail fence, wagon wheels, various cactus varieties, hitching posts and more (including wagons and the ever-important tumbleweed for rent). Part of what a Western needs is the proper foliage, fencing and more. Jackson is a proper source for it.
Green Set, Inc
Not to be outdone by another greens company, Green Set also offers the proper foliage, greens and dressing for many Western themed productions. Straw bales, carts, fiberglass barn animals (cows, buffalos, horses), and more rustic decorations. Don’t forget that prop houses including Green Set are perfect for events too!
L. A. Party Works
Mechanical bulls, cantina poker, tomahawk throwing, archery and more. If it is a Western Themed Event you are throwing you can’t go wrong reaching out to Party Works. They’ve got western themed bars, games and entertainment that is bound to lasso in a smile from the biggest curmudgeons.
A cowboy is racing towards a small shack on his trusty stead, being chased by God knows what. He jumps off and runs into the humble structure; the door isn’t even locked. Pulling on a seemingly random series of wooden panels on the wall a hole and staircase appear below. He presses a button in the stairwell as he descends, once again hiding the secret entrance. As we enter below the camera peels away to look around the room. Computer control panels, half completed robots, and futuristic weaponry abound.
Steampunk is a sci-fi fantasy genre often placed in a Victorian or Wild West setting. Generally it is a period setting with one minor change. Machines wilder than the imagination exist and generally work off of steam power.
It has gathered popularity over recent years, though existing for decades, becoming more and more prominent in pop culture. But where on Earth do you find a source to dress and decorate such a scene? Who has the gizmos and hand props? I’ll bet Debbies Book can help.
Sword & Stone
The craftsmen over at Sword & Stone are unparalleled when it comes to both their talent and experience with The Industry. If you need something to be crafted they have the know-how. One thing they aren’t often touted for, however, is their large inventory of items for sale (and rent too if you need to).
The Rational Past
If you need period scientific equipment these guys are a must. From industrial antiques to pocket watches, gauges and drafting equipment they’ve got you covered. They are really a great spot, I love unique businesses.
Lux Lounge EFR
It’s rare for an event company to have steampunk styles, but Lux Lounge does. Steampunk sofas, chairs, banquetes and even chandeliers. If you need a large room (or an event) filled, they’ve got you covered so you don’t lose any steam putting everything together.
A little gem in Santa Monica with quite an array of unique items. Aviation models, goggles, copper ring towers and all manner of quack medical equipment not to mention motorized gear units, control panels and tesla coils. This place was serving steampunk as rentals long before the term was really even popularized. They went under the radar for a few years but are certainly back up and running and ready for the task.
History for Hire
If it’s older than new, they’ve got it and (especially when working with period pieces) you won’t regret swinging by to find much of what you need.
One of the kings of miscellaneous, the crew over at LCW is always happy to get to you what you need. They have plenty of control panels and aerospace equipment, plus things you probably didn’t even realize you want.
N.S. Aerospace Props
Rocket parts, hydraulic hoses, flow control valves and so many other parts. They have the large assortment of parts and pieces that could make anyone drool (if they drooled over aerospace parts).
Warner Bros. Studios Property Department
Remember Wild Wild West? Guess where quite a bit of those items went? That’s right, a classic steampunk movie has some of it’s pieces right in the heart of the studio lot.
Laura Richarz, Set Decorator extrodinaire of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and True Blood, is once again teaching a new generation of possible set decorators at FIDM. The classes are designed to help new designers understand many creative career opportunities and gain insights into those businesses. These ones are specifically working towards a greater understanding of Set Decoration in Film and Television.
On Saturday May 23rd she took her class to History for Hire. The students were incredibly lucky to be given a private tour from one of the owners, Pam Elyea. She showed them around their immense (and painstakingly cataloged) prop house. They also had a chance to get a quick look at their design department where labels, pamphlets, posters and more are available and sometimes created from scratch. Not to mention the fabrication department (the very same one that made all of The Titanic life preservers and ticker tape machines for Lincoln).
I was also invited to open up my knowledge to the students and answer any questions they may have about local prop houses, how the business works, and what it entails to become a union member. Of course it didn’t hurt to talk about the new website, updated apps, as well as the newest book and e-book.
Just last Thursday Dec. 11, 2014 Philip and Laura’s separate classes of students came to the valley prop houses for a tour. Afterwards there was an hour demonstration by yours truly on the in and outs of prop houses as well as a breakdown of some of the tools available on our app!
The students had a chance to visit three very unique prop houses; History For Hire (great for period and historically accurate reproductions), Alley Cats Studio Rentals (perfect for outdoor street dressing, playgrounds and more), and ZG04 Décor (a quickly expanding prop house of decorative accessories, hand props, and general set dressing).
Klaus (owner of ZG04 Décor) gave great information and insight on how designers have limited time shopping, emphasizing how he has combined his skills of design and working on a tight schedule to expedite everything they offer at his new prop house.
A good time was had by all and it’s always nice to see new blood entering the entertainment business that are driven and creative!