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Vintage St Christopher Pedants – for protection in the waves

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Curious why a shop celebrating  Beach Culture and California Lifestyle is selling St Christopher pendants?

Throughout history St Christopher has been known as The Protector of Travelers. He earned this recognition because he stood 7.5 foot tall and took on service to God by carrying people across a dangerous deep water stream where many were meeting their death… and so the legend began.

During the rise of the automotive industry people used to pin St Christopher metals on their visors and paste them on their dashboards. Sailors, train engineers, bus drivers & traveling salesmen of faith would carry a St Christopher medal for protection. The Spanish have the phrase “Si en San Cristóbal confías, de accidente no morirás” (“If you trust St. Christopher, you won’t die in an accident”).

We’re not sure who the first surfer was to introduce this custom to the world of surf. In the sixties the California surfer boys used to purchase the St Christopher pendants at the Catholic bookstores and wear them as they became one with nature and took risks in the water, traveling across the waves.

The pendants soon became the surfers version of the class ring or letter-man sweater and became the item of choice by the Surfers Girlfriends. The nuns at bookstores up and down the California coast probably didn’t know what to make of the sudden run on pendants.

This tradition of wearing a St Christopher in the surf and giving a pendant to a loved one for protection is an insider tradition that continues today. So much so that numerous imitation pendants have been made and are now sold in commercial surf shops around the globe

We’ve sold St Christopher pendants since we opened. We had one charming father, in with his family of six who purchased one for each family member; his wife down to the five year old. “They do a lot of traveling even just on their daily commutes and these should keep them safe” he said with a wink and a smile. It’s customary for couples to stop by and buy one for the other… And then there are the surfers.

All ages, all faiths…. Surfers of the waves and surfers of the dreams wear St Christopher pendants on their necks, carry them as key chains, put them on their dashboards. It’s an amazing story of a popular culture phenomenon. The secret is in the knowing of which one to buy.

There are several varieties, metal, gold, silver, vintage enamel, one-sided, two-sided… some with a little wear, some that have been well used and there are the newer commercial releases. There’s a price difference and a quality difference. But there’s one for every budget and we keep quality versions across the spectrum stocked.

So next time your feet take you on a journey and you feel you need a bit o’ protection for yourself or a loved one you know where to turn. We’ll set you right… Make sure you know the original from the repro, assist you with your selection and wish you safe travels.

Prices start at $125. Please contact us for current inventory, prices and availability.

GOT QUESTIONS? Call Us: 310-915-6611
Visit Us: 12553 Venice Blvd, Mar Vista CA 90066http://www.surfingcowboys.com/index.html

E-mail us: scout@surfingcowboys.com

A Musical Addition – 1950’s Wayne Archtop Jazz Box Guitar with Case

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The look of this guitar stopped us in our tracks, we were thrilled to find that it’s sound is just as captivating. Perfect for playing jazz and blues it features a single cut-a-way body, adjustable floating bridge, machine head turners, medium v-shaped neck and trapeze tailpiece. It is a good player with low action and a beautiful look.

It has a tobacco sunburst finish and an art deco “Wayne” logo on the head stock.

Sold complete with original W. H. Stamford & Sons leatherette case decorated with a cool, original Braniff Airlines sticker applied back in the day, adding more mojo to this cool guitar.

Wayne was One of the Australia’s early guitar manufacturers, in business from the 1940’s to the 1970’s. The factory was located in Heidelberg, Melbourne.
The guitars from their early period (of which this is one) are their most desirable. Wayne Guitars are also recognized for their production of the popular Smoky Dawson model guitar during this same 1950’s period – Smoky Dawson was Australia’s first singing cowboy, who performed in the style of Gene Autry and helped to popularize the Wayne brand.

We picked this guitar up whilst on our travels in Australia and carried it back to California by hand.

Available for purchase at SurfingCowboys.com.

Trucking ‘On

surfing cowboys logo cap

We’re thrilled to announce the arrival of our Surfing Cowboys Trucker Cap.
Not your average Trucker Cap, our Surfing Cowboys cap has more style and that bit of extra panache you’d expect from us. Adjustable, constructed with a brushed cotton front, blended subtle colors and a profile that fits both men and women. The Surfing Cowboys logo embroidered on the front. Made entirely in California, USA. Click here to visit our online store.

 

Gerald McCabe Shedua Wood Pedestal Dining Table

Gerald McCabe Shedua Wood Pedestal Dining Table

Prized equally as a work of art and as a dining table this masterpiece by Gerald McCabe is a one of a kind creation that has stood the test of time. The table top and leaves, cut from a solid piece of African shedua wood, create a unique, captivating design with beautifully flamed grain lining up on all three sections.

Versatile as well as beautiful; removing the cresent shaped outer leaves converts the six to eight seat oval table into a round pedestal; accented by McCabe’s trademark solid wood propeller shaped base.

This table as designed and made in California in 1968 by Gerald McCabe for his Orange Crate Modern label.

Gerald McCabe (1927-2010) was born in Long Beach, California. He attended Long Beach Polytechnic High School and served in the U. S. Navy during World War II. He received a bachelor’s degree from UCLA and a master’s from California State University Long Beach, in fine art.

McCabe opened a custom furniture business in the mid-1950s and designed furniture for companies such as Brown Saltman and Glenn of California. In the 1960s and 1970s, McCabe designed and produced his own lines under the names Erin Furniture and Orange Crate Modern. McCabe’s creations are known for their modern lines, precision joinery and the combining of wood, glass and steel.

McCabe received recognition throughout his career, with his furniture designs included in the Case Study House #21 by architect Pierre Koenig. A famous photograph by Julius Shulman shows Koenig standing by a stereo cabinet designed by McCabe.

McCabe’s first wife was a folk singer, and as a result of McCabe’s reputation as a master woodworker, his wife’s friends brought guitars to him for repair. This side business evolved into McCabe’s Guitar Shop, a music institution in Santa Monica, which became a gathering spot for music fans and musicians.

McCabe, known as a free spirit, also restored and sailed a tugboat, taught design at area universities and art schools, was a yoga instructor, repaired Citroen automobiles, raced cars and built his own home in Santa Monica Canyon.

As an added note for those of us who are Venice CA locals & aficionados: McCabe’s studio was located on what was then West Washington (better known today as Abbot Kinney Blvd).

Table center diameter, without the additional leaves attached, measures 47.5″ Diameter

You’ve been asking….

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We’re asked every day how we like our new place, for those of you out there to whom we haven’t responded to personally, let us tell you that WE LOVE IT.

Business is different, yes, it’s changed, but this move has given us the opportunity to get back to our roots… after 17 years of incubation.

Those of you who have been with us since the beginning will remember that our business started with vintage furniture, collectible surfboards and skateboards,  a smattering of small motor-scooters, iconic props and obscure design pieces.

We’ve always thrived on introducing items of interest and trends to the marketplace, mastering the ability to connect and communicate with our industry customers and regular-folk. providing inspiration, exceptional service and consultation.

The wide open space, high ceilings and harmony in our new location provides us with the room to stretch our wings and the space to stretch our minds. Showcasing some of the best items in these genres that we’ve had to date, introducing new discoveries and displaying and communicating about them in the best possible way.

We’re also currently expanding our range of inventory and applying our edit to newly made creations and partnerships in the areas of: leather goods, jewelry, literature, homewares, clothing and more.

Exciting times to say the least….

P.S: Our huge parking lot allows our customers easy access for a great experience from the moment they step out of the car and makes getting items home a breeze.

P.P.S.: We hope to see you soon!

Memorial Day

Memorial Day

Memorial Day: parks, beaches and back yards across America are filled with friends and family; meeting, greeting and indulging in the fruits of life. We honor our service men and women, remembering, cherishing, celebrating and living The American Dream for them, with them. Our hearts go out to the suffering, the wounded, the fallen, the left and all of those who are miles away from the ones they love… in service.

Personally, we wish fighting would be unnecessary and abolished. We wish that we all would just discuss, listen, love and empathize with each other. Finding meeting grounds, ways to explain the points of view, the means to honor the differences, the similarities and each other as members of our shared human race is a beautiful dream to embrace.

Wishing you all a glorious day of love that will multiply every time it’s felt or shared. Hopefully one day, that love, will put an end to the fighting, turning Memorial Day into one big picnic.

For those of you who are entertaining yourself or others today and need a last minute back yard fireplace, indoor or outdoor furniture or a new t-shirt to wear we plan to have our store open until about 3. Call 1st: 310-915-6611.

Featured in this pic is a vintage woody piled high with classic original suitcases.