Some people are working this Good Friday, while others won’t be (and are probably going to have a Great Friday).
For those of us who WILL be working, it’s good to have a list of shops open. Some people will be open for half days (leaving after lunch) so we have split up the list into two with partials closing around lunchtime.
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.
You’ve finally landed on the distant planet. Something you’ve dreamed of since you were a child. The camera slowly rolls past your shoulder too look through the viewport. All the eye can see is vast, uninhabitable terrain. You’ve trained for this moment, your colleagues have too. There’s just one more thing missing before you step out on that new planet toward the unknown. You’re going to need a spacesuit.
Of course the kicker is that most places don’t carry such unique suits, let alone shuttles and other NASA dressing. If only there was a resource that helped track down the unusual, the hard to find, and occasionally the simply odd.
Oh that’s right. Debbies Book:
Action Sets and Props/Wonderworks, Inc.
Space shuttles and space stations, expertise in working with realistic effects, miniatures, spacesuits, NASA dressing, and rovers. If your next shoot involves anything space, this is where to start. From realistic replicas to fabrication of futuristic pieces Wonderworks will get you there and back in time for supper.
Global Effects is always a great place to stop for costumes, props and miniatures. When it comes to space, that is no less the case. Realistic and futuristic costumes abound along with creature effects, makeup effects and more. They also have some great suits of armor and other historical items.
LCW Props is known for being eclectic, and never in a bad way. They have a large selection of aerospace parts and test planes, and other pieces perfect for dressing a scene that needs them.
From the useful (think space shuttle hardware and computer panels) to the out of this galaxy (such as their pulsating futuristic lamps and passkey controls) they are perfect for getting your set to look right. They even manufacture items perfect for a spaceship bridge and assorted terminals. You will never regret stopping at Modern Props, and even less so for dressing from contemporary and beyond!
N.S. Aerospace Props
This spot is filled to the brim with rocket engines, hardware, industrial parts and much more. From newer models to antiques it is a great place to grab a lot of hardware in one place. You may not get the whole ship there but you will have plenty of parts to work with inside of a ship!
Space scenes have very specific needs, so why not go to the places that have those specific items?
It is always nice to be reminded of what is located at Warner Bro. Property, and even more exciting to see what’s new. Robert Greenfield is always keeping the inventory fresh while holding on to the classics, a rare but important talent that is needed for any prop house.
Walking around I noticed the presidential furniture has it’s own little dedicated space now (watched over by some Mr. Smiths from The Matrix), the chandelier room still has a large variety to choose from, and downstairs The Collection awaits it’s next use. I wish I had thought to take a photo of the giraffe legs sticking in from the ceiling down there though. That one caught me by surprise.
The meeting, post-schmoozing of course, went without a hitch. During a few words from Shirley Stark, Ralph of Hollywood Studio Gallery, and Robert Greenfield the raffle winners were announced, many of them donated by LCW Props. Bryce actually won a bottle of Tito’s vodka (that I assume will be shared with the office) from Lennie Marvin’s Prop Heaven.
All in all it was a great meeting, with a very large turnout (and very delicious desserts)!
As you are reading this, you may be wondering to yourself — where in the hell can I find an 8 foot steel cowl vent? Ok, maybe you weren’t wondering. But IF you were, LCW Props is the place to go. From AC cooling units to Yeti boxes, you’ll find it at LCW.
They’ve famously absorbed the entire nautical collection of the now defunct Louis Equipment Prop House!
The LCW graphics division has a great collection of computer graphics too, such as airport security footage, database scans, radar scans, weather maps and more. There’s an online catalog, and you’re able to see the computer graphics in action.
Next time you’re wondering—where am I going to find [blank]. Let LCW fill in the blanks for you.
I have a tendency to miss happy hour specials (and McDonalds breakfast specials), but one special that never has a time limit is at LCW Props!
Their ‘This Month’s Specials’ menu always has something interesting and practical. So for all you bargain hunters out there (including the late ones like me) they’ve always got their specials on display on their website. Not to mention they’ve got many of their props inventoried and searchable on their website so check them out.
Not web savvy? Give them a face to face visit, and take a stroll down prop lane… but I highly recommend trying their website searches too. It’s like Neo and Trinity gearing up in the Matrix when isles of stuff zip past them like speeding trains. LCW Props’ search engine is kind of like that only with a Happy Hour/Month! I bet Neo and Trinity had to pay full price.