Birds and Valentine

My mother loved birds. She would talk to them as she placed seed and water for them in her backyard. The birds would come to her window and she would tell them they would have to wait, because she was busy. Mom had a bird collection of figurines set up all around her house. Her collection was distributed to her great-grandchildren. Whenever mom would make wreaths, you could bet a bird would be included. There were many shopping trips with the sole purpose of looking for more birds to decorate the house. I inherited mom’s clock that has birds for the numbers on the face of the clock. The birds chirp at the hour and half-hour. It used to drive me crazy to hear the loud ticking and chirping as we sat in Mom’s kitchen; but now it is a lovely memory.
As much as my sisters and I used to kid her about these birds, we are all three enamored by these beautiful creatures. My sewing room has birds everywhere. I often find myself including birds in my art. And, I am fortunate to have my Meemaw friends who love to go bird watching. One of the Meemaws is an expert at identifying birds, so I love to go with her and learn more.
When I was teaching, my students would spend the whole day making personalized Valentine cards for each of their classmates. We would play music all day, and write personal messages to each friend. Parents would donate all types of craft materials for us to use. I miss those days. So, I decided to make personal bird Valentine cards for my siblings. I also made Valentine love pillows for my sons and their wives. I had seen these 5 inch pillows in the Target bargain bin, and thought…”I can make these!”. The pillows can be used to tuck-in personal messages to each other and to hold gift cards.
The Valentine cards for my siblings are all about birds. I’ve been experimenting with fabric collage in making birds. I start by sketching the bird on drawing paper. Then I trace the bird onto muslin, followed by cutting the pieces of fabric to fill in the different parts. Next, I do some thread outlining and thread sketching. Then I cut the bird out as an applique and sew it onto a background fabric. Wonder Under is used on the backing and ironed onto the card. For my brother, I made a Western Bluebird. My older sister is receiving a robin. My sister-in-law is also receiving a robin. Since my younger sister likes sparrows, I made her a house sparrow. On the back of her sparrow card, I printed a poem by Paul Lawrence Dunbar.

The Sparrow

Paul Laurence Dunbar – 1872-1906

A little bird, with plumage brown,
Beside my window flutters down,
A moment chirps its little strain,
Ten taps upon my window–pane,
And chirps again, and hops along,
To call my notice to its song;
But I work on, nor heed its lay,
Till, in neglect, it flies away.
So birds of peace and hope and love
Come fluttering earthward from above,
To settle on life’s window–sills,
And ease our load of earthly ills;
But we, in traffic’s rush and din
Too deep engaged to let them in,
With deadened heart and sense plod on,
Nor know our loss till they are gone.

It has been a great day.
Just listening to music.
Making personalize Valentine cards.
I hope you are enjoying a great day, also.

9 thoughts on “Birds and Valentine

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