A muralist by weekday, A face painter by weekend, Trish Page needed a way to stand out. Her solution: the "Turtle," a bedazzled car that looks like the anti-Hummer and brightens up the corner of Chicago and Washtenaw where it's usually parked. "I wish I would have done it years ago. It's so fun. The kids lose their mind."
She was inspired by a Volkswagen Bug she saw, with just the bumper done up. "It was at nighttime and it just took my breath away," she says. Page uses plumber's goop to affix jewels to the 1995 Isuzu Trooper, and has done so in three installments over the last three years. "It's added a lot of weight to the car, but it was gonna get horrible mileage anyway," she says, adding that she's never gotten a ticket for the car.
The advertising benefits of having such an eye-catching auto mean the bedazzling has paid for itself, Page says, referring to the fact that the back window is impressed with all her info—it's basically a big business card. She says the effect can be hit-or-miss, but what's most important is that it stands out without making her seem too off: "Some people think it's strange or crazy, but it's not like I covered my car in baby doll heads."
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