Posts made in June, 2011

molly peacock on craft

Molly Peacock is one of my favourite writers. (www.mollypeacock.org). Check out her biography, Paradise Piece by Piece, and her How to Read a Poem. You won’t be disappointed. Her meditation on craft from her latest book The Paper Garden captures what I think is the magic of creating.

“Craft is engaging. It results in a product. The mind works in a state of meditation in craft, almost the way we half-meditate in physical exercise. There is a marvelously obsessive nature to craft that allows a person to dive down through the ocean of everyday life to a seafloor of meditative making. It is an antidote to what ails you…is a key to understanding one’s personal wealth–and acknowledging that wealth in others, too.”  (p.288)

The lovely photo of my hooking basket was taken by my friend, Nora.

1 comment

new hooking

This is the second in a series of bird chair seats.  I began this one at Green Mountain and finished up hooking yesterday.   Still must steam and sew on the backing before it can rest on a chair.  The glowy bits are dyed nylons and silk ribbon from Jennifer.

0 comments

put a bird on it

My son sent me this image, a double joke for me since I am so adamant about spelling and of course I have been ‘putting birds on things’ for years.  These days there are lots of jokes about birds on handmade items, including this which you have no doubt seen.  So, for the record, here are some much older bird images which have been in our house forever.

This bird was painted on the crock in Picton Canada West, pre-Confederation Ontario.  This was a pre-marriage gift from my husband, 35 years ago.  I have always loved the image of the jaunty robin, painted on with cobalt.

Here are the original labels which I used when I was weaving, again over 30 years ago.  They are beautiful woven labels which I still use for special items.

And I am still at it–putting birds on things.  It wasn’t until I wrote this post that I realized how much my polka dot bird had been influenced by the lovely cobalt birds those women in Picton painted over 150 years ago.

4 comments

new bags–grape and espresso

I started making hooked bags with purchased leather straps and gradually began adding leather to make them lighter and more interesting.  Then I began making my own straps. On the right is a selection of my hooked bags.

I still love the texture and variation of the hooked bag, but have also become smitten with leather. These two bags are made from upholstery remnants and leather jackets.


The grape bag is made from a purple leather bomber jacket as well as a small piece of leather upholstery.  The espresso bag is made entirely from upholstery remnants.

The linings are as enjoyable to make as the bags.  I often use silk screened cotton canvas, but inside the expresso bag is wonderful Waverly fabric.

I have been asked how you go about purchasing one of these bags or the canvas bags which I wrote about earlier.  If you are interested, please leave a comment with your email.

2 comments

Some great things

1. Elizabeth Hay’s luminous new novel, Alone in the Classroom.  I was hoping to read the book and then give it to a friend for her birthday, but I find I am underlining passages and reading excerpts aloud.  So I am about to order my second copy.  I also have Emma Ruby-Sachs’ new book waiting.  I heard her interview on Q and was entranced.

Alone in the Classroom, by Elizabeth Hay, McClelland & Stewart, 306 pages, $29.99

2. Heidi Swanson’s quinoa salad which you can find here.  I had to make several substitutions as I didn’t have all the ingredients.  It was still wonderful and got raves from my family.

3. Moo stickers.  I’ve been meaning to post about these for a while.  They are great fun to make and I’ve been using stickers of my hooking and drawing for labels, envelope closures etc.

4. A wonderful party  to celebrate my son’s upcoming wedding.  Family and old friends whom I haven’t seen for ages were there. Many thanks to my sister and her partner for That’s Amore!

text

2 comments


I am a retired educator and recovered administrator. I have always been interested in fibre, first as a weaver, now as a rug hooker and screen printer. Over the last few years I have become passionate about giving a new life to cast-off wool and leather. This is my journal where I muse about my creative life.

Available in Store

Follow birdbrain via email