Coming from the land of cedar shingled cottages, it’s quite a contrast to see Scottish houses, which are all made of brick, stone and slate. I love their solid stance, with a touch of whimsy showing in the windows and roof lines. These photos were taken in the towns and villages along our hiking route in the Highlands.
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.
Polly doll came along on our trip to Scotland. She had a Highland dancer’s costume made for the occasion, complete with a Glen Garry bonnet. Yes, I know her kilt is not authentic in front, but she insisted on having it look more like a pleated skirt. I took her picture along the way, sometimes with my cell phone for Instagram, like the one at Urquhart Castle (above). The other photos were taken by Rob or me with a fancy Canon camera.
Wild mountain thyme was everywhere!
Polly learned the history of the Scottish Regiment in a museum display at Stirling Castle…
and admired the lush mossy ground.
She visited Edinburgh Castle…
stood amongst the flowers…
and peeked inside a cabinet at Argyll’s Lodging in Stirling.
Polly posed next to a primrose growing along the Great Glen Way…
and atop a bonny lass’s head in a garden near Glasgow.
We hiked the Great Glen Way through rain, fierce wind, fog and occasional sunshine. Every day, the scenery along the Caledonian Canal, from Fort William to Inverness was different and magnificent. Except for the iconic Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness (below), I have trouble remembering exactly where most of these photos were taken, but they are located somewhere along our route. I hope that you enjoy the tour!
This 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 For this year’s collection, I painted 10 more markers to make a total of 32. Earlier this summer, I took pictures of some house builders setting up their creations.
Cynthia Rose’s house is surrounded by a growing landscape.
Kim Sheerin’s ceramic houses have stained glass windows, with lights flickering inside.
Nicole St. Pierre felted her house and devised a paper canopy roof.
She also planted miniature succulents around the base.
Throughout Scotland, the building materials of choice are stone, with slate roofs.The rooftop scene above was taken from Stirling Castle. And just a short stroll down toward town is Argyll’s Lodging (below).
This joining of metal and slate roofs was in a village along the Caledonian Canal.
Chimney pots and pointy roofs with finials added a bit of whimsy to the solid structures. The rest of the photos were taken in small towns in the Highlands and in Inverness.
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!
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.
A few house are inside the building, including “Lichen Lookout”, my house from the 2013 fairy house exhibit.
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.