The Thing With Feathers

Well June flew by quickly, didn't it? As my first month of design and development comes to a close, I find that birds continue to be a theme in my life and studio. I've been keeping the bird feeder outside of my studio full and have been enjoying the return of some old familiars. I do think having the chickens free-range deterred migratory birds from visiting our yard, so now that the domestic flock has their nice new enclosure, the wild birds are returning.

The Scrub Jays have been particularly raucous, nearly throwing fits that they can no longer enter the nesting boxes to steal eggs. In retaliation they've been haunting the roof of the chicken run, where the girls sit in mockery.

The other day we had a family of Spotted Towhees flitting back and forth between our lilac tree and our neighbor's dogwood. The males' dramatic black and white spotting inspired me to sketch out a rough draft for some watercolor wash experiments, but I got no further than penciling. I feel as if I'm flitting a bit myself. I have a long list of ideas that I want to fulfill, and it's hard to settle down to attack just one, so I've been sketching little bits here, mocking up outlines there. Truthfully, my list for June hasn't got a single thing crossed off of it yet, but there are many, many things in progress.

I think the first thing I might finish are these bear tote bag prototypes. These are going to be hand constructed and printed from block prints on my letterpress! It's been a pleasant journey becoming reacquainted with my sewing machine, though I'm having a hard time remembering certain details about thread tension. Back before I discovered printing, and before I went to art school I used to sew a lot. I've never been into fancy construction, but I made so many of the utilitarian things I used around the house; laundry bags, pillow cases, and tote bags for when I first decided I wanted to reduce the amount of paper and plastic I was bringing home from the grocery store. I love how things come full circle. Now I can blend my print work with sewing.

In other news, I have lavender sachets AND goodie bags listed in my Etsy shop. Sadly, these may be the last of the lavender sachets for a while, as my neighbor's landscaping crew mowed through half of my plants the other day. After fuming, I realized that perhaps a favor was done and that I could cross at least one thing off my list for June.