Anne & Dennis wedding dolls

On my recent trip to visit my sister and her husband in Oregon, I took pictures of their wedding dolls. I made them for Anne and Dennis when they married in July, 1988.

In typical Mavor fashion, the wedding was an eclectic blend of cultures and styles. It would be out of character if any of us had a conventional wedding! Anne wore a dress from Afghanistan, with a Swedish crown of candles. (She spent a college year in Sweden.) Dennis wore a Polish outfit in a nod to his family heritage.

The dolls are about 6 inches tall and I think they were displayed on top of the wedding cake.

The candles on her head-dress are tube beads.

The hat, shoes and boots were made of real leather.

I remember enjoying adding the decorations to their clothing. It was fun to revisit the dolls after 24 years!

perfect Woods Hole morning

At 8am this morning, the water was calm under sunny skies, the humidity was low and the temperature was perfect for a bike ride into Woods Hole.

There was hardly anyone about on Water St. and Eel Pond was still. I enjoy this time of year, especially on a sleepy Sunday morning, when the weather is superb and the summer people haven’t come yet. In a matter of weeks, the crowds will descend, bringing an exciting, but wearing energy. Having been a year ’rounder since childhood, the change seems natural to me, like a built-in part of the seasonal shift. For more recent “winter folks” it can be an annoying adjustment. 

Skiffs will be jammed up around the pond’s edge. This morning, pollen floated and swirled on top of the water.

Decks and porches will be full of people.

And dinghies will fill every spot along the Yacht Club piers. Here we come summer of ’12!

peplum fairy jacket

Last week, I saw this picture in the fashion section of the Wall Street Journal. The article pointed out a change in women’s business attire, from dark suits, to bright colors and even florals. The peplum jacket reminded me of my wee folk fairies. Not that today’s business women are wearing folksy petal petticoats and fitted, leafy tops. I’m just glad to see that women in the corporate world are showing more confidence in their own individuality. Those pink shoes have got to go, though!

I designed a felt peplum style jacket for my 3 1/2″ Blossom fairies about a dozen years ago. It is the basic pattern used for the fairy’s clothing in my how-to book Felt Wee Folk. This jacket is the usual giveaway that someone has used my patterns in dolls they sell on Etsy. I don’t mind that they make the dolls and use my patterns for their clothing, but I try to keep up with shop owners and ask that they credit me and my book as the inspiration for their creations. Most everyone honors my request and are usually apologetic, when they realize that they didn’t think to credit me in their product descriptions. One woman said that she assumed it was OK to use my designs because my book is so well-known. Well, the book is still being discovered and I hope it will stay in print for years to come. That means that the publisher needs to see a consistent demand for the book.

I’m not making dolls to sell myself and am happy that people are having such fun making them. The Bayberry Fairy below is included in my new Blossom Fairy Poster, which is available in my Etsy Shop. Want your poster autographed? Just mention it on your order.

New Fairy Poster!

 A whole swarm of Blossom Fairies are gathered together in my newest 18″ x 24″ poster, which is listed in my Etsy Shop. I’ll be glad to autograph any of the posters–just mention it on your order. There’s Blueberry, Black-Eyed-Susan, Aster, and Porcelain Berry, along with 12 other fairies dressed in petal petticoats. About a dozen years ago, I went on a fairy-making binge, designing all kinds of wee characters to go with different flowers and berries in season.  I carried them in a basket, searching around the neighborhood for the best natural spots to take their pictures. Hazy days were best for photography, because there were less harsh shadows on their delicate fairy faces. 

It was fun to go through the slides (they were taken before digital) and pick out which fairies to include in the poster. Many of the photographs are printed in my how-to book, Felt Wee Folk and some are still available as note cards in my Etsy Shop. My sister, Anne Mavor designed this poster in her clean, classic style. Even though I don’t make kits and Ltd. edition dolls any more, it’s fun to have the photos to work with. I’m happy to find a way to bring back the Blossom Fairies!

Posies originals at Art Institute of Chicago



pages 48/49 from "Pocketful of Posies"

pages 48/49 from “Pocketful of Posies”

I am happy to announce that two original fabric relief illustrations from Pocketful of Posies are included in the exhibit, Told and Retold: Picture Book Artists from Studio Goodwin Sturges at the Ryan Education Center at the Art Institute of Chicago. The show opens on Saturday and will be up for 5 months from May 12 – October 28, 2012.

Detail from page 49, "Pocketful of Posies"

Detail from page 49, “Pocketful of Posies”

My contributions to the show are two double page spreads, the one of Humpty Dumpty, Peter Piper and Two little dicky birds and the street scene with Pat-a-Cake, Cobbler, cobbler , mend my shoe and Polly, put the kettle on. The exhibit features sketches and finished artwork by: Holly Berry, Nicoletta Ceccoli, Christine Davenier, Bob Kolar, Salley Mavor, Daniel Miyares, Eric Puybaret, and Sebastia Serra. Our methods and styles are vasty different from one another and we are all represented by the children’s book agency, Studio Goodwin Sturges. Plans are in the works to have the artists do a special program at the museum and I’m hoping to come! I’ll post it on my events page as soon as I get a firm date.

Pages 18/19 from "Pocketful of Posies"

Pages 18/19 from “Pocketful of Posies”


Wedding Banner: Kat & Devin

Last Sunday, we had the pleasure of attending Kat and Devin’s wedding.The bride’s family and my family have been closely connected through several generations. Kat’s grandparents and my grandparents were next door neighbors in Woods Hole in the 1940’s and our families have shared our love of folk dancing, folk music, sailing, and art ever since. Kat is an artist and her husband seems to be a free spirit. Here’s a picture of the dancing wedding couple.

As usual,  I made them a wedding banner for a gift. I really lucked out with the felt  colors I chose, since the wedding’s predominant color was purple/lavender.  I bent wire into the letters of their names and then picked out some decorative objects and beads. The pinkish square object in the center, between their names is a cool leather button I bought years ago.

I then wrapped the wire letters with embroidery floss and stitched the square wavy edged name panel with variegated pima cotton.

I sewed the wire letters and objects to the felt piece.

Then I stitched around the outside edge of the felt  banner piece and sewed the square panel in place. I added some fun “dalmatian” stone beads in a zig zag pattern.

I added some bead  and shell embellishments to the scalloped bottom edge and sewed the wrapped wire wedding date to the felt.

I picked some metal beads from India that I thought would bring an interesting texture to the hanging part of the banner.

A section of a strangled bittersweet vine serves as a hanger. I screwed in tiny metal eyes and hung the banner. I hope Kat and Devin like the banner. It was a lovely wedding and I wish the bride and groom many years of happiness!