Between 2003 and 2007, Svenningsen made national news when she purchased her lot of inhabitable Thimble Islands. From MSNBC to the New York Times, periodicals speculated about this island buying spree. What would Svenningsen do with the islands she purchased? The answer seems to be that she's renovating the housing, usually using the same design as the original homes, viewing the islands as an artistic project. During that four-year period, Svenningsen spent more than $30 million, and she became one of Branford's top three tax-payers (she and other Island property owners are now paying additional taxes as part of a ).
According to realtor websites, most homes listed for sale on the Thimbles go for between $1.5 million and $4 million.