Thursday, September 23, 2010

New Felt - Whooping Crane and Chick

I finished my felted and stitched Whooping Crane and Chick. The felt background consists of hand-dyed merino with a pineapple fiber from Habu Textiles, embedded for texture and to represent the dried grasses in the terrain that Whooping Cranes nest. I also dyed some Tencel fiber using MX Reactive dyes and then needle felted it to the lower edge of the composition to give the illusion of water. The images of the mother bending down to feed her chick, were hand stitched using DMC floss. This will now get mounted and prepared for framing in a shadow box frame. I plan to use this new work as one of my entries for the Massachusetts-Rhode Island juried Surface Design Association member show.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Westport Birding

What a beautiful day to explore the ocean's edge for birds and other wildlife. I took a guided walk through Massachusetts Audubon on their property along Horseneck Beach.These clouds along the horizon were so gorgeous!

 Then I saw these Double Crested Cormorants drying their wings.


As we continued down a dirt pathway, we spotted a large group of Great Egrets, Snowy Egrets and Glossy Ibis. The Ibis are the darker birds to the left of the Egrets.

This part of the pathway provided us with some beautiful views of the marsh land, filled with beautiful colors.

There were butterflies everywhere. I was lucky enough to get a nice shot of a Monarch.

As I walked back to the car, along the beach, 
I spotted this single shorebird - not real sure the actual species.
ETA - I just figured out that this is a Buff Breasted Sandpiper.
Another bird to add to my life list!

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Wave Bracelet

Here is my latest creation to add to my cuff bracelets - "The Wave".. I took a class at Turquoise String Beads in Fall River to learn how. It is made from pearls, triangle beads, seed beads and Swarovski crystals using the brick stitch. There just might be a matching pendant in the future!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Progress on Whooping Crane and Chick

I've had a little time to hand stitch on my felt that features a whooping crane mother and her chick. I decided to work on them in a subtle way, versus completely covering the felt back ground. This decision is due to the fact that when I look at a piece of art that draws me in when viewed at a distance, I love it when I see exciting details in a close-up look. If you are wondering what the three dimensional strands are, it is pineapple fiber from Habu Textiles, which is one of my favorite sources of unique yarns and threads.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Gooseberry Island - Westport, MA

I had another wonderful time exploring the shore for more birds. Gooseberry Island has a very rocky terrain, which supports quite a different group of shore birds and water fowl than Horseneck Beach does. Enjoy the slide show of the shots I took of the trek around the island.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Shorebirds at Horseneck Beach

I had such a great time birding at Horseneck Beach on Thursday, August,19th. I saw numerous species of shorebirds and was able to get some pretty good shots of them, not to mention the beautiful sunset! One shorebird that I wasn't able to get a picture of (no thanks to the man running along the beach) which is one to add to my Life List is the Whimbrel. it is a fairly large bird with a beautiful long slightly curved beak to it. I enjoyed watching it probe into the sand for food.

Black-bellied Plover

Semipalmated Plover
Immature Common Tern

Monday, August 09, 2010

Molly and her two new owlets

Molly is feeding her two baby owlets. You should hear her beckon them to come and eat and then hear them squawking for food. Nature is so incredible!!!

We are on "egg watch for egg #3 to hatch sometime today. I could hear it peeping through the shell earlier this morning.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

New Felt - Whooping Crane and Chick

 I started a new piece of felt today in preparation for submission to the SDA MA-RI juried member show. I was totally inspired by this picture, which was a National Geographic photo of the day, earlier this week, and used it for my color choices and composition.

Here is my finished piece, drying in preparation for the hand stitching and embellishing that I plan to do to capture more of the grasses, the chick and the whooping crane's neck and head.

Friday, August 06, 2010

First egg of Molly's second clutch almost ready to hatch

Here is a screen shot that I just took around 8:00PM,, Thursday the 6th. It appears that the first egg of Molly's second clutch will be hatching soon. You can hear peeps from the egg, with Molly responding back, whenever she stands up and moves around. Join the crowd of over 2,000 viewers and check out the excitement at

Sunday, August 01, 2010

New Indigo and Shibori

I dyed some new samples of shibori in the indigo vat in preparation for my workshop at the 2011 SDA Conference.

Mokume Shibori (stitched resist) on linen

Mokume Shibori on cotton, dyed with MX dyes

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Molly's Second Clutch

I learned so much earlier this summer about about barn owls and their lifestyle, from the hatching of the eggs to the owlets fledging,  Watching Molly and McGee raise their four baby barn owls was a very enriching experience. Carlos and his wife Donna have decided to keep their live camera on Ustream going for the second clutch of Molly's. She has now laid 4 eggs and you can now experience the barn owls yourself by watching The Owl Box. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

New Felt - "Iceland 2010"

I was busy in the studio last Saturday and really enjoyed making this piece of felt that was inspired by the recent eruption of the volcano in Iceland. The left image shows how my wool looked before I felted it. I laid down several colors of my hand-dyed merino wool, along with wool nubs that I dyed and added for texture. I am so delighted with the finished work, seen on the right, The finished size is about 11 inches square. I plan to frame this in a shadowbox frame, like my other felt pieces. Slowly but surely, I am building up a body of work that I can submit to galleries for a possible one person exhibition. I plan to make another piece of felt, but larger in scale. So, please visit soon for the next in this series.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Baby Cardinals, April 10

Baby Cardinals, April 10, originally uploaded by pvt_waldo.

Here is a picture courtesy of the online camera I am following of the Cardinal nest in San Antoni, Texas. They are only 3 days old!!!

Thursday, April 08, 2010

My new online interest - Live Bird Cameras!!!

Many of you who know me are aware that I am an avid bird watcher. Last week I discovered that has numerous live cameras of birds nesting, all around the United States.

My all time favorite has to be The Owl Box, in San Marcos, California. This live video cam shows the life of Molly, a Barn Owl, and her four owlets. I have learned so much about the daily life of a Barn Owl and the raising of little owlets. Watching each of them grow, day by day, developing in size and new habits has been a very rewarding experience, and sometimes very comical.

Carlos and Donna, the owners of this camera, are to be commended for their interaction with local elementary schools and educating the children on the lives of Barn Owls.

There are recorded videos for anyone to watch and see the earlier stages of Molly and her family. If you are real lucky, you might even see McGee, the dad, arrive with some dinner for the pantry, such as mice, moles, possum and rabbits. Check it out! You'll love it!

A few others I am following are:
Cardinal family in San Antonio, Texas, with thee newly hatched babies
Osprey in Brewster, Massachusetts, building their nest
Eagles in New Jersey
Eagles in California

Saturday, March 06, 2010


Haruni, originally uploaded by minstrel spinner.

Here is another of my recently finished shawls. The pattern is called Haruni and it was knit using a sock yarn that has long color repeats. My shawl pin was made by Leslie Wind.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Indigo Dyed Fabrics

These are two pieces of mokume shibori, also know as wood grain. I dyed them using pre-reduced indigo and did two dips in the vat, achieving a nice deep color. Each dip was one minute. I love hand stitching, so this shibori technique is perfect. That blue indigo color is so beautiful.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Handspun Butterfly Forest Shawl

Butterfly Forest Shawl, originally uploaded by minstrel spinner.

Here is my latest shawl, knit with my handspun which is a light fingering weight blend of wool/silk/angora. I made this as part of Ravelympics 2010, an event held in conjunction with the 2010 Winter Olympics, on my online knitting community of Ravelry.