Thanks for visiting my blog! MudBay Musings chronicles creative journeys, with inspiration and humor I find along the way... including my mother's and my artwork, stories, local bird life and garden favorites...
all of which I hope will bring a smile to your heart.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

A Pigeon Called Noah

In a departure from my usual art-related posts, today I'm happy to share one of the sweetest, most heartwarming stories - thanks to Dolores for forwarding this to me. Now, meet an extraordinary pigeon named Noah:

All content and photos by: Wild Rose Rescue Ranch

"These little bunnies, about 6 days old, were attacked by a dog and orphaned. Two out of the litter of five did not survive, and these three were not doing very well.

Enter Noah—the non-releasable, one-legged homing pigeon/rock dove that we have here in rehab.

Noah kept going over to the bunny cage and looking in—even sleeping in front of the door to the cage. Then, 2 days ago, I only counted 2 bunnies in the cage, so I hurriedly picked Noah up from the front of the cage so I could look inside. And to my surprise—there was the tiny bunny—under Noah's wing—sound asleep!

The bunny had crawled through the cage—preferring a featherbed, no doubt. Now, they are all together, and the bunnies are doing GREAT. When the bunnies scoot underneath Noah's feathers, he extends his wings out to surround them—and they snuggle. When one of them moves and they start sticking out here and there, he gently pushes them back under him with his beak!"

For an update on Noah, and to learn how you can help, visit the Wild Rose Rescue Ranch.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Paper Doll Dresses

On Sunday, we had our first Art Party of the year. I don't know about all of the other Lunch Ladies, but I have greatly missed these days together. What a wonderful day, filled with fun and laughter, creativity and the company of such lovely, generous, thoughtful friends. I'm truly one of the luckiest gals on the planet.

For our project this time, we made Paper Doll Dresses. We put a big pile of community goodies in the middle of the table, then created our own dresses on a base of cardstock. Thanks to Linda and Grace's Big Adventure to the Paper Doll exhibit in Edmonds - that was the inspirational starting point for our project. Thanks to Lyneen for providing links and ideas on her blog, and to Linda for bringing a template. And to Everyone for bringing goodies, smiles,great food and their zest for life. Lunch Ladies Rock!

Kris added a paper doily apron to her dress with the flower collar - so sweet! If this doesn't make you think spring, nothing will!

Miki's nearly-finished dress is gorgeous in muted shades of brown and blue. She wins the Best Use of a Bird Image honor of the day. (Yes, I just made that up!) But, if I were a paper doll, this is definitely one dress I'd want to have!

Linda's gingham dress is so cute - look at those teeny buttons and lace trim! And, such a cute pleated text collar. She started the clothes-pin trend, also. Can't you just imagine this adorable spring frock hanging on the clothesline, gently flapping in the breeze?

The back of Grace's dress is just as beautiful as the front! Such a lovely way to use music sheets, and look at that lovely pleated hem! This would have any doll humming a happy tune!

The back of Grace's dress - yes, the back! Isn't it pretty? Her doll will be coming and going in style!

My nearly-finished dress, which has since been revised by the addition of a gorgeous birdcage image given to me by Lyneen. Thank you, Lyneen! The beautiful flower print is from a dinner napkin Miki threw into our community mix. Thanks, Miki!

And here is Lyneen's knock-your-socks-off creation. She made her own French-style pattern and embellished with machine-gathered crepe paper, lace, tissue paper, and Dresden trim. Isn't that bodice the cutest thing ever?

Thank you, Ladies, for once again making the day fun and memorable!

Egg Dyeing with Silk

Many thanks to our friend, Miki, who is such a "Good Egg!" (Sorry, Miki - couldn't resist.)

At our Art Party last weekend, she brought us each an egg that she had dyed with a technique using recycled silk neckties, water and vinegar. I had not heard of this technique before, and oh my - what gorgeous eggs she made! I made a nest out of my fabric - just look how the egg picked up the swirls of color from the silk. Beautiful!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Recommended Quilting Book

Our dear friend and quilting mentor, Karen Sievert, has just had her first book published by Martingale and Co. We are SO excited for her! How wonderful it is to see her labor of love in print and on the bookshelves! Congratulations, Karen!

Better Together: Two-Block Designs for Dynamic Quilts
is a wonderful book and would make a welcome addition to any quilter's library.
Below is the review I posted on, but you can purchase the book directly from Karen on her website.

"As one would expect from Martingale, Better Together is a wonderfully produced and well-written book that will inspire both beginning and advanced quilters. In the first few pages, the award-winning author provides insight on fabric selection and preparation and quiltmaking basics, including many of her useful "insider" tips for piecing and quilting that will also be useful to advanced quilters. The cover photo is an appropriate representation of the book's contents - the quilts are striking and beautifully photographed in full-page format.

Through the 10 main chapters of the book, the author shows how to make dynamic, visually-intricate quilts by combining only two separate block designs in each quilt. The author's choice of colors and value take advantage of the alternate patterns that emerge as the different blocks are joined. Included are examples of how different color choices can dramatically alter the look of a quilt, as well as patterns that would be suitable for large-patterned themed fabrics.

The blocks are all rotary cut and constructed with squares, rectangles, and half or quarter square triangles. Instructions for each quilt, including fabric requirements, cutting measurements and construction steps, are complete and clearly and concisely written. Full-color illustrations matching the photographed quilt accompany each step.

The author's personable writing style makes you feel as though you had a good friend sitting with you as you are sewing. This is a lovely book from beginning to end. The author's knowledge, passion for quilting and warm writing style are an inspiration - Quilters and this book are truly "Better Together." We hope to see another book from this author soon!"

Friday, March 5, 2010

Hand-Marbled Fabric

For years now, we've looked forward to seeing Suzi Soderlund at our local quilt shows. Her hand-marbled cotton fabrics are luscious - each one a treasure.

Mom and I always pick out a few pieces of fabric, dreaming of butterfly wings, rolling seas and dramatic flowers. Although it's nearly impossible to pick a favorite, I'm always drawn to her rosey-browns, purples and greens. Mom heads straight for the teals, blues and yellows. Just look at these gorgeous colors!

Someday, I may even have a project special enough to warrant cutting into one of these masterpieces. Like with vintage ephemera and photographs, I just can't quite bring myself to use them... they provide so much joy and inspiration just as they are! However, here are a couple of Suzi's examples of how to actually use her fabrics !

The newest addition to her collection this year is amazing Snow-Marbled fabric. And yes, she really uses snow as part of her process! Before their home was graced with its first snowfall of the year, her husband scouted out some snow and brought it back home to her in his pick-up truck. You've gotta' love these folks!

Suzi's incredible Snow-Marbling

To find out more about Suzi and her passion for marbling, you can visit her blog and website.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Silly Words - Part I

Ah, the things the dogs and I come up with when we're bored and acting a bit silly...
Today, we have some silly words to share with you!

SillyWord Dictionary - Part 1
by Daggar & Honey

(an ti kwoht) - noun
- the act of demonstratively telling a joke or story while waving one's arms and jumping about

Art Mewveau
(ahrt myoo voh) - noun
- period during the 19th century usually associated with the years in which feline paintings reached a height in popularity

(kahlm fod er ee) - noun
- the peaceful feeling gained from feeding one's own livestock

(fid l pad l) - verb
- the act of repeatedly dropping one's oars while rowing, canoeing or kayaking

(gahrd her belt) - noun
- someone who is dieting; sometimes referred to as "watching one's waistline"

(hahy per men thawl eyt) - verb
- the giddy feeling one gets as a result of eating too many mentholated coughdrops

(hahy per men tl eyt) - verb
- the condition of over-thinking, usually resulting in a feeling of stress; can cause sleeplessness

(lahy ber ee uhn) - noun
- a person, usually a child, who lies about having eaten jelly, pie, cobbler or other berry-based foods; usually accompanied by a tell-tale "berry face"

(pet rohl ee uhm) - noun
- area in one's yard where one's pet dogs frequently discover fragrant items to roll in

planitarry sighence
(plan i ter ee sahy uhns) - noun
- the study of the resultant frustration in cases when one does not get things done in time according to plan
(pos uhm bil i tee) - noun
- the ability to be able to deceive onlookers by pretending to be dead, unconscious, or uninterested in the onlooker's requests or discussions

(tohd stool) - verb
- to step in something objectionable; usually accompanied by a frequency of dogs in the area
(vahys roi uhl) - verb
-the act of getting one's finger stuck in or pinched by the works of a vintage, manual typewriter (a.k.a. Royal brand)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Kitsap Quilters' Show

Mom and I recently had the opportunity to attend the Kitsap Quilters' show at our local fairgrounds. It was a wonderful afternoon, filled with inspiration. Here are some portions of a few of the quilts that caught my eye. Unfortunately, I don't know the names of any of these artists - I was having so much fun gawking and taking pictures that I forgot to write down any of the artists' information! As you can see, they are a talented group of quilters:

A lovely, bright combination of patchwork and applied flowers:

Very sweet oragami-style flowers:

Bright swirls and stars:

Oh my - just look at all of these tiny points! Wonderfully accented by the
black and white inner border:

And, you've just gotta' love the gal who loves Elvis enough
to have crafted this tribute:

Gorgeous Hawaiian-style applique' in shades of the sea:

Stunning Blue Jays in Native Alaskan-style applique

Very classy blended hexagons:

Traditional patchwork designs in contemporary batiks:

Amazing thread-painted quilt
(yes, those feathers are made of thousands of yards of thread!):

Very imaginative use of fibers in this lovely seascape mini-quilt:

And my personal favorite:
Handpainted seashells in natural shades in the style of Velda Newman.
Just look at the exquisite quilting on this piece!
Fancy threads, handpainting and just a hint of sparkle to complete the under-sea fantasy.

A close-up of the starfish that made my heart go "pitty-pat..."

Globe de Mariee

The tradition of the Globe de Mariée began in nineteenth century France. The domes were created as a display for wedding souvenirs, which often included wax orange blossoms. Each component of these lovely displays had a special meaning, and couples would carefully choose each part of their display.

The happy couple often added special mementos to the display over the years. These three beautiful examples were recently offered for sale at Silverdale Antiques.

Oak leaves - Longevity

Ivy leaves - Commitment

Roses - Eternal love

Daisies - Purity

Bird & wreath - Family

For more information on the symbolism of these exquisite domes, visit: