Monday, May 2, 2016

Mermaid of Morro

From Southern to Central Coast, California is a mecca of mid-century gems and majestic views. My favorite thing to do is to head out on a coastal road trip, and this little pit stop was sea town splendor, with it's sparkling Oceanside, and historical emphasis on the booming Embarcadero Wharf, as though it had forgotten time.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, the coastal town of San Luis Obispo, Morro Bay, has been a center for tourism and beach holidays. Morro Bay is also home to the world-famous landmark, Morro Rock, which serves as the backdrop to the historic fishing and vacation town, dating back to the Spanish expeditions in the 1700's.


5th Street, Morro Bay, c. 1950's
Morro Rock in the distance


A nostalgic sea town called for my favorite 1940's inspired, custom made Norma Jeane suspender shorts, and a baby blue sweater in honor of the great Pacific. I like to be comfortable, but cute, when treasure hunting and I'm not afraid to leave the house in pin-curls, as my hair thanks me later!



Wearing a 1950's pink raffia purse & 1950's gold wedges


Clam diggers in Morro Bay c. 1940's
Opened since 1955, I'll take you through a coastal gem in particular, located in Morro Bay, which is not only nostalgic, but a symbol of all things pink-collar. With it's original 1950's mid century architecture, and vintage sign work (which is actually from an old Shell gas station) featuring colors of pinks and blues, it's impossible to walk by this whimsical wonder without stopping in. In fact, generations of customers continue to come back today, in search of unique sea treasures (literally!)


It began Decades ago, when a fisherman’s son began selling abalone shells for ten cents a piece on a street corner in Morro Bay. That first summer, he made about $100, and since, hasn't stopped selling those shells by the seashore.




If there were a 'go-to' for the Mermaids of Morro, this would be it. This little shop by the sea specializes in sea shells, showing the largest selection of specimens on the Central Coast. Renowned throughout the world, you can find Sea Clams, decorative corals, unique crafted sea shell jewelry and shells of all types, mostly with a touch a pearly, pink! These under-the-sea treasures come from all over the world, including the Philippines, India, Australia, Sri Lanka, and more. The store is a painted a gorgeous pastel shade of aqua mint, wonderfully merchandised with beautiful pink hued shells in every corner.


Tara and I love shells, whether it be in Tiki & Polynesian decor and costume, or Art Deco & Hollywood Regency architecture and furniture. The use of shell elements is always on our mind, and having grown up alongside the beach cities, we just adore the mix of sea & glamour.

Lana Turner in Prodigal, 1955








<3 Ashlyn

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