Category: thanks


seashell folkseashell folk, off to celebrate

Thanks to everybody who showed up for the shop update yesterday – I’ll be packing everything up this weekend and getting things on their way right after the holiday. I’m working on things for Tuesday’s owl and ship update ( there will be one more songbird too) – here are some things in progress:

pale pink songbird

This is the bodice it’s made from- I bought it years ago and have been using bits of it ever since.

antique pink bodice

A  grey owl – fabrics courtesy of Sri Threads.

sri grey owl

And a pair of turn of the century wool swim bloomers I’m about to turn into an owl.

antique swim bloomers

I got them for next to nothing – the seat is terribly moth eaten. The fabric is wonderful- weight, shade, fading , texture – everything ideal.  Also, in the unlikely category,  technically, I’ve just posted a picture of myself on the internet in a bathing suit.

the new artisans

I can hardly believe I’m included in this book – it is magnificent in every way. I think Olivier Dupon has created something very special.  In less expert hands this wealth of  information might  have been overwhelming or the spirit could have been lost but Olivier presents it with simplicity and real elegance – you are never distracted from the central idea: that this is a book about love of craft, process and materials or Olivier’s true affection for the subject.

Find the book:

on Facebook:

Olivier’s blog:

the new artisans

the new artisans

the new artisans

“This book captures the new mood – a return to a preference for the unique and the handmade. Design expert and acclaimed blogger Olivier Dupon has sourced the cream of the contemporary design world from all over Europe, Australia and the United States, profiling 75 artisans who use craft techniques, rather than mass-production methods, to create stylish, whimsical, covetable objects. Hundreds of colour photographs feature a huge variety of crafts, including art, ceramics, furniture, glasswork, jewelry, lighting, metalwork, papercraft, textiles and woodwork. Complete with a directory of products, and Dupon’s personal recommendations for inspiring shops and websites to visit, this is the perfect resource for discovering unique and beautiful objects made by new, talented artisans from all around the world.”

paper mache teacup pattern

A paper mache teacup pattern to  mark the 5 year anniversary of my blog, my experiment.   A  perfect time to say thank you and give you a present.

There is a template you can download here.  And lots and lots of photos and instructions.  If you do make teacups I’d love to see and you can upload a photo here if you like or leave a link to your photo in the comment section below.

ann wood teacups

What you need:

  • Click here to download the template
  • paste –  I use golden harvest wheat paste ( wall paper paste)
  • light cardboard – cereal or frozen pizza box is great and a bit of thicker cardboard for a base
  • newspaper – it’s nice to have different colors
  • scotch tape ( not the invisible gift wrap  stuff- the shiny sticky stuff)
  • glue – elmers, glue stick, hot glue  – whatever you like
  • pencil, scissors, exacto knife, and paint and brushes, glitter, fabric – whatever you’d like for decoration.

Click the photos for larger images.

Cut out the templates for the teacup, handle and bottom  and trace them onto your cardboard. I had the best results with a Kashi frozen pizza box.  Cut out your pieces and  very lightly and  gently score the the teacup where the dotted lines are on the template with the BACK of your exacto knife.

Make a very  tiny snip  – really tiny -just a 16th of an inch or so where the sections meet. Next bring the bottom sections together one at a time and tape together on the outside (the printed side). Then turn it over and taper the bottom inside.  Do this for each section – always taping both sides…….

Read More

treasures from sri

Stephen Szczepanek of Sri Threads sent over another surprise package of magnificent things. Exquisite, inspiring things, thoughtfully chosen and gathered and kept for me that  just  magically appear on my doorstep.  Here are  a few  highlights.

japanese garment fragments

There are fragments of garments with wonderful surprise linings.

sri garment 2

And beautiful wear and eccentric mending.
 eccentric mending
I already have owls in progress and I’m thinking about using the blue silk bits below for spider bustles and some new flowers I’ll show you soon. Thanks you, thank you Mr. Szczepanek!


goodbye 2010

I hope 2010 was a fabulous year for you and wish you a happy 2011.  I’ll end the year with photos of  a few favorite treasures I discovered on deadhorse beach this year.

A tiny perfume bottle  and a bit of sea green net,

deadhorse perfume bottle

a wonderfully detailed little spaceman,

deadhorse spaceman

and a  pretty ceramic shard.

deadhorse shard

Happy New Year!!!

(and thanks for showing up)

sri and the spider system

I had a lovely time this morning with coffee, chet atkins and a big box of Japanese textiles. Stephen Szczepanek of Sri sent over another  surprise box of wonderful things.

japanese textile fragments

When stuff like this shows up I can’t think fast enough or sew fast enough. Thank you Stephen!!

sri fragments 2

And the beginning of the new spider system .   Spiders take me forever to make and that’s mostly fine, I like making spiders, but it isn’t practical.   As I make more I get better at it  and  things begin occur to me that speed up the process;  having the wire cut to length for each part makes a big difference and next I need to make  jigs for forming the leg shapes . I’ll probably need help with that.

spider leg wire

I’ll show you more highlights from the Sri box  later and maybe some new things in progress – I’m finishing some things over the weekend that will be in the shop early next week – some spiders, an owl or two and some little birds, if you would like to be notified when the new things are available please check back here or join the mailing list at my shop.
*p.s. -I’ll also be spending some time this weekend getting caught up on email and if you’re waiting to hear back from me  thanks for your patience*


I got another surprise package from Stephen Szczepanek ( sri threads) yesterday, so many treasures it’s too much to think about all at once but I’ll share a couple: A single exquisite feather – the picture doesn’t do it justice – it is so soft and iridescent it seems almost liquid, it makes me think of this quote from “The Rings of Saturn” :

“I have always kept ducks,  he said, even as a child, and the colors of their plumage, in particular the dark green and snow white, seemed to me the only possible answer to the questions that are on my mind.”

Some impossible blues – already being made into something. Thanks very much Mr. Szczepanek.

And something else – progress this morning on a new ship.

play all day

I’m  pleased and excited to be included in “Play All Day – Design For Children” published this year by Gestalten. I’m also pleased to live in a world where you can have a blast making  castles out of old cardboard  boxes and on top of that! somebody will publish them in a lovely book.

It’s available at amazon now – check out  pages 48 and 49!

And a couple notes:

* Fill in the Blank Gallery is having a cardboard horse making workshop on Sunday, if you’re in Chicago check it out – all ages and skill levels are welcome and it’s free!!

* Henchard and some other new things ( including some ready made sweethearts and  a new set available to order)  will be in the shop sometime next week. If you are on the mailing list you will be notified when the shop is updated.

titanic at the half moon hotel

This photograph was a gift from my favorite guy at the flea market -(park slope) and I love it.  He stopped showing up in early summer last year. I’ve wondered and asked about him since and I found out a few weeks ago that he died.  He took the photo at the Half Moon Hotel in Coney Island, I’m not sure when- 70’s or 80’s probably.  He was a painter and photographer. I only new his first name – John.

cardboard castle #2

I finished my second cardboard castle and it’s in the window at Johnson at 179 Orchard street. There are also some doug rhodehamel style mushrooms and a couple little creatures roaming around. I had lots of fun making it and it was good thinking exercise for my sometimes too buttoned up brain. I took some pictures of it here before we brought it over.

The back of the castle has some little holes you can peek into. I couldn’t really properly photograph what you see inside, there are ghosts at a ball in one, an enchanted horse in another and miss havisham is held prisoner in a tower (her picture didn’t turn out at all).

The castle will be in the window at Johnson until October 31st . Unfortunately this is my last window for Johnson, Mrs. Johnson is closing at the end of the month. I’ll really miss doing her window. I started doing it for fun and it ended up changing my life in interesting and good ways, Thank you MJ.

new shop

My new shop is up!

3sitepic2.jpgThere will be birds and caketoppers available there on Monday. More on that later as well as some info on the nice people who built the new shop for me.

back in brooklyn

This is the longest I have ever abandoned my blog since beginning it last May. The busyness before, during and after the Tinlark show was just silly and I’m slightly the worse for wear – slow, permanently tired – probably need a little vacation. I’ve still got tons to do to catch up. It was so nice today I packed up all my work and spent the better part of the day under a big tree in Prospect Park.

Thanks to everybody who’s been patient ( especially you freda -you’re getting a special surprise).

I wish I had more pictures from the show for you but almost every picture I took absolutely sucked ( I’m hoping the gallery has much better pictures and I’ll post them when I get them). I’ll post the few other marginal pictures I’ve got soon. This is my raven.


He is made from vintage calico and this edwardian bodice. His eyes are antique black glass faceted buttons. He is sold and so is almost everything else! Last I heard there were still two bats and some of the 100 horses. You can call tinlark for info: 323-463-0042

The show was lots of fun. Cris McCall the owner of the gallery is wonderful and it was great to meet laura and maggie and see their beautiful work in person. Thanks to everybody who came by to say hi. Marisa took this picture at the opening.


and wendy has a great picture of my owl on her blog.

Hopefully more show pictures soon but now in other news:
There are tiny mushrooms growing in my terrarium!


I’m pretty excited about it.