When Gadora first moved to Austin, I maneuvered my new city by mapping out consignment furniture stores and set sail. Navigating new (to me) boutiques, I rated them on a very serious four smiley-face scale. 1 “=)” was given to mediocre stores of which I’d already seen enough and 4 happy faces were awarded shops with discerning taste—those I’d recommend to friends. On one such outing, Gadora and Paige the Wonder Wagon happened upon an empty building at the busy intersection of Mary and South 1st.
Ooooh. It was fun. The cinder block walls and flat roof line immediately drew me in. The building reminded me of so many of the mid-century buildings that littered Tampa’s palm-lined streets, it simply felt like home. I parked and stuck my nose in every window it had. Who owned it? Why was it empty? Oh, wouldn’t I turn it into something marvelous! I pitched the notion to my GF—together we were sorting out how to turn “Gadora Wilder” into a viable source of income—but she just couldn’t see it. It was dingy. Lackluster. And needed work. With a little imagination, and with a few strokes of Photoshop, I reworked the building into this…
I’d paint the thing Gadora’s favorite Chartreuse green. Working with the building’s original metal awnings, I also envisioned adding a teak pergola along the street-facing front. As I’d use the space as a workshop-of-sorts to refurbish furniture, its garage doors were perfect for throwing open on those rare days the Texas heat let up. I showed my partner that pic, she immediately got on board. We mentally carved out every square inch of space: allocating room for my wares, a roomy workshop space, a place for gathering and learning and even fathomed a coffee spot. That was more than a year and a half ago now…
While sorting out the business of turning this dream into a real business, Gadora needed work. While it’s been rewarding in a million other ways, the steady work has kept the reality of Gadora at bay. I’ve since managed to cruise by my ideal locale, and for months it appeared the same. Whew. There. Is. Still. Time! Then a few months ago I noticed a change. A transformation was starting to take shape. d@m^!T, how could this be? They had the pergola. Their green was in the same family. There was still no signage, but they were clearly on a mission.
I was working Wednesday when I got the photo. The BFF explained I was NEVER GONNA BELIEVE how similarly the building had been transformed into my original vision. D@m^!T, D@M^!T!! It’s now the home of Bouldin Creek—a once dirty little coffee shop further down the road. They were sure keeping Austin weird. And while I can take zero credit for what Bouldin Creek has turned that corner into, I’d like to think the vibes Gadora set free into the Universe found their way onto some brilliant Architects’ shoulder.
It’s just so smartly done. I love their use of an old rusty rim for a succulent garden. Love! Why didn’t I think of that? And I hear besides the fancy tatooed baristas and haute hippie menu—worth its weight in tofu—there’s a bicycle repair shop on the premises. See? I knew the space could be commingled creatively.
Knowing my inexplicable love for bathroom design, the BFF snapped this bicycle chandelier from the Diva’s room. I’m kind of speechless. About the whole thing. I’m utterly sad it wasn’t Gadora making that corner happen. But, Bouldin Creek seems to have truly done a job I’m (moderately) ok stepping aside for. I cannot wait to stroll up to the place, and rather than press my nose to the now shiny windows… walk myself inside.
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Bouldin Creek on Yelp ~ “They moved down the street to a new location and pretty much KNOCKED IT OUT OF THE PARK in regard to maintaining the parts that make this venue so unique, eclectic, and South Austin in flavor.”
78704 ~ A grass roots website operated by two South Austinites with a mission to promote the eclectic mix of hip, trendy and unique privately owned shops, entertainment venues and restaurants located inside the zero-four boundaries.