Posies exhibit in Greenville, SC


Last week, Rob and I visited Greenville, South Carolina, where I gave a talk in conjunction with my Pocketful of Posies exhibit. It was a pleasure to meet the people who came to see the show and hear about my work at the Upcountry History Museum  last Thursday. Before heading inside the museum, I couldn’t resist standing next to the enormous banner outside.

The museum staff did a superb job hanging the show! I’m happy to say that it’s the most creative and professionally presented installation I’ve seen on the five-year tour. There’s plenty of time to visit the show, which is on display until Feb. 14th, 2016. This could very well be its last venue, as I’m no longer soliciting new locations. Of course, it could be a different story if an invitation from a great place with funds to ship the artwork comes forth.


The bold choice of lilac purple walls really sets off the natural golden brown wooden frames. They covered one area with a 6′ blow-up of the “Wise Old Owl” and a screen, which shows my Rabbitat video and Felt Wee Folk book trailer on a loop. Signage with different versions and information about the rhymes hang below the framed illustrations. For this, the previous exhibitor, the Bel Air Library in Maryland generously shared their research about the rhymes with the Upcountry History Museum. To give an idea of how I make the figures, they laid out step-by-step parts in a display case. They’re the same ones I made and photographed for Felt Wee Folk. And last but not least, the black box theater lighting makes everything pop and sparkle!

Pocketful of Posies, Oct. 17, 2015 – Feb. 14, 2016 at the Upcountry Museum – Furman University, Greenville, South Carolina.



We really enjoyed our visit and took a few extra days to see a friend and relative in the area. I spent a wonderful day near Columbia with my cousin, also named Salley with an “e”. Her 5-year-old grand-daughter is also named Salley, so our family surname continues to be passed down. Our grandmothers were 2 of the 5 independently minded, high spirited Salley sisters of Orangeburg, SC. In this circa 1900 photo, my cousin’s grandmother has their father’s arm around her and mine is standing, 2nd from the left.


And we had a fantastic visit with my RISD classmate, Niki Bonnett, who lives in Asheville, NC. What an artsy, fun town! Years ago, Niki designed the poster and catalog for my pins, which you can see here. We could have soaked up the southern hospitality for a bit longer, but had to fly home.



opportunities to see original artwork

I am excited to share the news that there will be opportunities to see my original fabric-relief artwork in different parts of the country this fall and winter. The Pocketful of Posies exhibit, will be at the Upcountry Museum – Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, Oct. 17, 2015 – Feb. 14, 2016. Next month I will head down to Greenville to give a talk about my work on Thurs., Nov. 19th at 7:00 pm. This is the last scheduled exhibit on the 5 year tour and I hope that many of you can make the trip to see the show!

And, 2 of my larger pieces will be included in Insects to Elephants: Mother Nature’s Menagerie at the Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts in Cedarburg, Wisconsin.  Birds of Beebe Woods and Rabbitat will be displayed from Oct 21. 2015 – January 10, 2016.

Poster 22x28 2SM


Also, my piece, FaceTime is part of the group show, Entangled at Some Things Looming in Reading Pennsylvania until Oct. 24th.


Posies goes south

Book - Pocketful of Posies 2010

Book – Pocketful of Posies 2010

I am pleased to announce that the Pocketful of Posies Exhibit is traveling to the southern United States! About half of the original embroidered illustrations from my book (28 pieces) will be displayed in Maryland and South Carolina for the next 6 months.

The show has traveled to over 20 locations since the book was published 5 years ago. I am happy that so many people around the country have had the chance to see the detail and sculptural quality of the originals. No matter how excellent the photos are, there’s nothing like seeing the real thing! I’m sorry that many of you who live far from past and future venues will miss this opportunity.

At this point, I’ve moved on to new projects and will no longer be personally searching for new exhibit locations. There will inevitably be suggestions to “please bring the show to my city”, but I am not in a position to make that happen with the wave of a wand. Unfortunately, I have found sending out proposals to seemingly appropriate venues ineffective for the most part. All that said, inquiries from museums, art centers and libraries who would like to host an exhibit are always welcome! That’s how many of the shows have come about, including the next 2. So, the exhibit may or may not continue to tour beyond this winter, depending on the interest from suitable venues. Also, the collection is slowly dwindling as pieces sell, so the touring exhibit will eventually come to an end.

For now, I’m excited to have my work shown in the mid-Atlantic area and as far south as western South Carolina. Perhaps we will meet when I give a talk in Greenville, SC on Nov.19th! See the schedule with links below:


August 22 – Sept. 25, 2015 at the Harford County Public Library, Bel Air Branch, 100 E. Pennsylvania Ave, Bel Air, Maryland.

Oct. 17, 2015 – Feb. 28, 2016 at the Upcountry Museum – Furman University, Greenville, South Carolina. Artist talk with Salley Mavor ~ Thursday, Nov. 19th at 7:00 pm.


Jerry hall 2010

Jerry hall 2010



fairy houses 2015, cont.

Fairy House blog-1This year’s Fairy Houses of Highfield Hall exhibit is larger than the 2013 show and it will be on display longer, too. The houses are holding up quite well and we’re confidant that most structures will stay intact until the closing on August 31st.There have been some instances of eroding moss and hot glue not holding parts together well enough, which backs up my personal bias against glue guns! But, the fairies have made repairs and are doing their best to keep up the neighborhood.

Each fairy house has a number, so visitors can identify the 32 locations around the Highfield property. Maps, with a list of house names and their makers are available inside during open hours. I hope that more of you can come see the show during its last month. A printable pdf file of the map is here.

Highfield Hall Open Hours: Mondays – Fridays, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm Saturdays & Sundays, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm. Grounds are accessible from dawn to dusk, except during private functions Fairy House map FNL-2a  For this year’s collection, I painted 10 more markers to make a total of 32.  IMG_20150424_155230Earlier this summer, I took pictures of some house builders setting up their creations.


Cynthia Rose – Eilonwy’s Stan

Cynthia Rose’s house is surrounded by a growing landscape.


Cynthia Rose – Eilonwy’s Stand

Kim Sheerin’s ceramic houses have stained glass windows, with lights flickering inside.


Kimberly Sheerin – Kimberland

Nicole St. Pierre felted her house and devised a paper canopy roof.


Nicole St. Pierre – Enchanted Baa Baa Hollow Cottage

She also planted miniature succulents around the base.


Nicole St. Pierre – Enchanted Baa Baa Hollow Cottage

The fairy family raffle for the benefit of Highfield Hall will continue until August 30th, so there’s still a chance to win! You can buy 3 tickets for $5.00 online here. fairyfamilyraffle

even more fairy houses 2015

Fairy House blog-1

The Fairy Houses of Highfield Hall exhibit is well underway, with many visitors coming to see it daily. I run into people around town, from the supermarket to my Zumba class, who tell me how much they enjoyed seeing the fairy houses. The other day I saw a grandmother come into Highfield, accompanied by a fully outfitted pair — a little girl fairy and a boy with dragon wings.

When I see everyone’s smiling faces, all of the preparation and planning that went into organizing the exhibit seems totally worth it. And then there’s the time and dedication that each builder put into dreaming up and creating their houses! More than one of them admitted having symptoms of fairy fever, lying awake at night, conjuring up how they were going to make their dwelling. See the map with house locations here. This tour isn’t over yet, with even more photos to come in future posts!


Glendell Towers by Glen and Susan Carliss


Cordelia Butterdragon’s School for Magical Creatures by Angela Tanner

My fairy house, “Grate Hall” (shown below) has battery powered LED lights, which add a shimmer to the glass and mirrors inside. Read a post about how I made it here.


Grate Hall by Salley Mavor


Grate Hall by Salley Mavor

A few house are inside the building, including “Lichen Lookout”, my house from the 2013 fairy house exhibit.

Lichen Lookout by Salley Mavor

Lichen Lookout by Salley Mavor

The houses on display were made by 30 people and are all very different from one another. Their construction of materials include wood, bark, stones, shells and moss.


Sparrow’s Post by Sheila Payne and Sally Egan


Glittering Glen #1 by Becky Deptula


Glittering Glen #2


Beech Front Cottage by Julie Child


Beech Front Cottage by Julie Chil


Le Petit Maison by Ramune Jauniskis

more fairy houses 2015

FairyHouses-1-14Please come along on a tour of the Fairy Houses of Highfield Hall exhibit. Since the popularity of the previous show 2 years ago, there has been much anticipation of this year’s display. The fairy house phenomenon has grown since then, so more people are familiar with the idea and it hasn’t taken as much explanation this time.

The houses will be set up all summer, but I suggest visiting sooner than later. Although most dwellings are quite sturdy and are holding up to the wind and rain, some are beginning to show their ephemeral nature.

Here are some of the many types of places where fairies live. Future posts with photos of more houses are coming…


Lone Star Postal by Barbara Whitehead and Bruce Safley

An old mailbox, mirrors and deer antlers…


Lone Star Postal by Barbara Whitehead and Bruce Safley

Vines and string webs…


Spiral Hallow by Bobbi Bailin

Believerton’s fairy community must follow neighborhood covenants.


Believerton by Sheila Payne and Sally Egan


Believerton by Sheila Payne and Sally Egan

A roof and stairway made of old books…


Hole in the Woods Library by Nancy Porter and Kellie Porte


Hole in the Woods Library by Nancy Porter and Kellie Porter

seaweed and sea glass.


Just Lobsta by Deb Coulombe and friends

tree trunks and bark…


The Oak Inn by Matt Inman

bittersweet vines…


Wood Hole by Lauren and Sadie Leveque

metal, glass and wood found objects.


Fairy House-Boat by Sue Beardsley and Tehva Baumflek

fairy houses 2015: ceramic abodes

Fairy House blog-1For this year’s Fairy Houses of Highfield Hall exhibit, I invited some new builders with fresh interpretations of the fairy house concept. I’ve always thought that ceramic artists could bring a unique perspective, so I asked 3 local potters to take part.

They were all thrilled and excited to make something for the show and each artist spent a good part of the winter and spring experimenting, constructing, glazing and firing their clay pieces. Each potter made multiple dwellings, creating a neighborhood, with many parts. Perhaps it’s because they are used to production work and couldn’t stop at just one! Ron Geering, Teesa Morgan and Kim Sheerin have all outdone themselves and in many respects, their houses are the stars of the show!

I’m encouraging everyone I see to go up to Highfield to experience the display. So many people assume that the exhibit is just for children and picture fairy crazy little girls flitting about, but it’s really an art show for all ages, men and women, boys and girls. If you live near enough to visit, please pick up a map inside (it’s free, but donations are appreciated) and start your search! I will be showing more pictures in the weeks to come, so that everyone can get a glimpse at these extraordinary dwellings.



Rhodo’s Rocky Roost by Tessa Morgan


Tessa Morgan


Tessa Morgan


Tessa Morgan


Tessa Morgan


Tessa Morgan


Kimberland by Kim Sheerin


Kim Sheerin


Kim Sheerin