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Blog Archive August 2011

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Charley Harper....an Illustrated Life

For those of you who haven’t as yet had the pleasure, I am about to introduce you to the amazing work of the late American modernist artist, Charley Harper.

I first came across, and fell in love with, Charleys work a number of years ago, whilst researching modernist style bird illustrations (of course).

Charley was best known for his vast collection of highly stylized wildlife prints, posters and book illustrations. During his career, he illustrated numerous books, notably The Golden Book of Biology, magazines such as Ford Times, as well as many prints, posters, and other works. He also created works for many nature-based organizations, among them the National Park Service; Cincinnati Zoo; Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in Pennsylvania and the Everglades National Park.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Glass Sand Beach

Next to time you’re in San Francisco, take a road trip north up the coast to Fort Bragg, and experience one of natures’ defining moments, its ability to turn trash into treasure.

In the early part of last century, Fort Bragg chose to dispose of its household waste off the cliffs above a beach near the town. With little regard for the environmental damage or pollution they were causing, its inhabitants tossed household waste, appliances, even automobiles into the sea. Eventually the beach was so seriously polluted it was nicknamed ‘The Dumps’.

In 1967 the North Coast Water Quality Board closed the area completely and initiated a series of cleanups to slowly reverse decades of pollution. But there was one thing too impossible to tackle: the millions of tiny glass shards churning in the surf.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Burd Haus. Home to the uber chic chick.

Wrap Modern Birdhouse in Vintage Orange
Wrap Modern Birdhouse in Vintage Orange

I was a very early bird this morning, up with the dawn chorus, tweeting and twirping, and gathering info on my favourite designer bird houses around the world.

Some of you will remember the Bird Textiles cuckoo clock, a limited edition range of clocks we released a couple of years ago, inspired by both the classic German cuckoo clock and the humble bird house. I love a good bird house.  So, here’s a few treats to tickle your fancy....plus a  special treat for those of you who don’t have a spot for a bird house.

First up, Nathan Danials amazing Burd-Haus.  Nathan says his goal is to ‘create modern shelters for our fine, feathered friends’.  His is a contemporary, tongue-in-cheek take on the humble bird house, using classic modernist shapes and fresh aesthetics. With names like ‘Mid Century Modern Birdhouse in Matte Black’ and ‘Case Study: Modern Birdhouse with Attached Pool’, these little gems get 10/10 from us. He describes the aforementioned as ‘the second addition of the modern case study series for the upper middle class modernist birds. A fully functional, water-tight pool is accessible from a side entrance of the house. There are two chill-out spots pool-side that hover above the water surface and act as a perch for the main house.’ Love it.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

one tree, 478 lemons

We've been blessed with a bumper crop of lemons this year, here at Bird HQ in Byron Bay. Homegrown, organic lemons. 478 so far, to be exact. From one little tree! And still counting. Eek.

It's something to do with all that nutritious chook poo mulch our little chooks have been scratching down the hill towards it me thinks. And lots of love and sunshine too.

Lucky for us, the chooks have been laying lots of eggs too lately, so we had in mind something we could make with all our eggs and lemons. Even luckier for me, my very handy helper Little Miss Q,offered to help harvest the lemons off the tree. And even luckier still, my mum, aka Granny Ang, is a bit of a dab hand at old fashioned lemon curd.

Dare I say it, but after 30 years in the Womens Institute (the British version of the CWA) Granny Ang has got the humble sponge and the mighty preserve (and quite a few other little gems) down pat. She's been keeping us busy sending over all her award winning recipes. We've been cooking up a storm in the kitchen of Bird HQ, and the fruit of our labours is going down a treat with friends and family. If you'd like a very special recipe from Granny Ang's recipe file read on......

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