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    Tuesday, April 27, 2010

    Free As A Bird

    No matter how much the wind huffs and puffs through the hills above Byron Bay, the home of Rachel Bending, founder and creative director of leading sustainable fashion and homewares label Bird Textiles, and her partner Campbell is one house that certainly won’t blow down – despite the fact that it’s made of straw.

    As someone who’s passionate about environmental responsibility, Rachel knew straw bale would be the perfect choice for the home she planned to create in the lush Byron Bay hinterland. A traditional building material with serious eco cred – it’s a renewable natural resource with exceptional thermal insulating properties – straw bale is undergoing a renaissance in dwellings. “It’s durable and, when you combine it with passive solar principles and an awareness of the site’s environmental considerations, you can design a house with significantly fewer energy requirements,” says Rachel.

    Read more from this interview with Home Beautiful Magazine May 2010.....

     

    Thursday, June 10, 2010

    Birds Winter Warmer Sale

    Its been a bit chilly lately so we thought we'd send a ray of sunshine to brighten your day.......some special bird winter warmers to make you smile. :)

    Until the end of June, on a first come first served basis, check out our sale catalogue or come into the Sydney Emporium for:

    - up to 60% off selected sling and hoop bags!
    - up to 75% off selected fashion garments!
    - handprinted fabric for only $25 a metre!
    - nothing over $100!

    Wednesday, June 30, 2010

    Sydneys Coolest Festival - Winterland

    Come and check it out.....Sydneys coolest festival – Winterland.

    ...and guess what?....Bird will be there as part of the Winterland Markets, curated by Finders Keepers. You’ll find handmade art and craft pieces, winter fashion, and traditional seasonal food to munch on while you skate the ice rink and kick back to live music. So come on down, on the 22, 23 and 24 July.

    Experience all the magic of a glittering European winter in the heart of Sydney’s inner west.  Come to CarriageWorks for the first ever Winterland festival!

    Throughout the festival, the beautiful foyer will transform for a winter festival boasting an dazzling indoor ice rink, live music and hot new bands, a design, arts and craft market, fabulous food stalls serving alpine cuisine, dancing, karaoke and activities for everyone to get involved in.

    Tuesday, November 29, 2011

    Ghosts of Gone Birds

    Enough with the Olympics posters, official or otherwise.....this, my friends, is priceless.

    Doco maker Ceri Levy is the brains behind Ghosts of Gone Birds. Working with hip creative agency Good Pilot out of London Town, Ceri and over 120 artist, writers and muso friends and supporters, have come together to raise awareness for BirdLife International’s Preventing Extinctions programme.

    Switching off now? Don’t. This campaign is brilliant.

    ‘We are raising a creative army for conservation through a series of multimedia exhibitions and events that will breathe artistic life back into extinct birds species’ says the team at Ghosts of Gone Birds, ‘Shedding light on front line conservation work being done around the world to prevent any more birds migrating to gone status’.

    An innovative art exhibition, spoken word and music events make for a tidy creative events programme. But it is the brand identity, images and series of information posters which sell the concept and cause so brilliantly. Do read on to see the series of posters, and follow this link to their website to read the ‘Ghost Stories’ behind each image.

    Ten out of ten from Mama Bird.

    On the first day of Christmas my true love sent to me..... one cheeky chook doorstop......two fat quarter stars......three petticoat skirts.......four feather filled cushions.........five beach umbrellas......six  shoulder tie dresses.........seven sausage dogs.......eight bird purses...... nine tennis dresses......ten dressed soaps......eleven tube lampshades..... twelve lavender eye pillows....

    All made from certified organic cotton and handprinted here in Australia. How fabulous is my true love? :)                 

    25% off all products shown in the Xmas tree, for the month of October.  

    There are 12 weeks left til Christmas...so why not kick off your Christmas and Summer shopping with a one off special offer from Bird. Shop online at www.birdtextile.com using the code CHRISTREE,  at our Surry Hills, Sydney Emporium, or by calling +61 2 8399 0230  

    **Selected lines only. Minimum spend $100. Offer ends 30/10/2010

    Wednesday, November 24, 2010

    Organic Christmas Giftboxes

    Bringing eco style to the Christmas Hamper.....limited edition Bird organic Christmas gift boxes.

    Ohhh...how could you resist. :) There are three types to choose from....

    'Everything But The Girl' Organic Giftbox....

    'Sweet Smell of...' Organic Giftbox.....

    'You Crafty Minx' Organic Giftbox.....

    ....all at just $99 each. Be sure to read on for further details, and scroll down for 18 fabulous variations.

    Wednesday, December 15, 2010

    a lickle baby bird ......

    NEW BABY BIRD RANGE

    Things have been pretty busy round here recently...mostly because I've become a very happy Mama Bird, to our divine baby girl, Quincy, who is 10 weeks old today.

    Quincy was born, at home, with the early sounds of the dawn chorus to greet her, on October 5th. She is the best thing since sliced bread and we love her to bits. :)

    Over the years lots of you have requested a baby bird range...and now then, don't get too excited, are you still keen as mustard?.....our very own little poppet looks so cute in her homemade baby bird we thought you might like some too.

    If you would, then please email info@birdtextile.com marked in the subject 'we love baby bird', with any comments, special requests, or feedback on a baby bird range. No promises as yet, but we will see.....

    Tuesday, March 01, 2011

    Egg Nogg for the Urban Chooksta

    In January 2010 we became the proud mama and papa of eight (yes eight!) baby girls.

    Crikey I can hear you cry!  Eight? Yes. Eight darling lickle chooks.

    Our new lickle family, Queenie, Blacky, Glynis, Dorothy, Sharon and M’Lady all lived in a lickle house, under some trees in our orchard on the edge of the rainforest.

    They loved the home we had made for them. Sharon, the Silky, thought her new home was nearly as dapper as her hair do. 

    The girls thought this was a pretty cool place to live. Glynis liked hanging out on her perch. There were mangos dripping off the trees. Citrus. Lychees. Bananas. Figs.

    Queenie and Dorothy had a little natter and decided they were on to a good thing at Rach and Cams nest. And because they were on to such a good thing they laid beautiful fresh golden eggs for our breakfast every morning.

    But, you know, M’Lady ...well M’Lady had an eye for detail. She was a cut above the rest. She yearned for a home, with a little bit more style. Panache. She wanted to nest down in something a little more stylin.

    Oooh...how we all love a bit of vintage.....my house is full of classic treasures found during the good old days when I drove up and down the coast touring op shops looking for vintage fabric for Slingfings.

    But it seems I'm not the only one who loves an old classic. A bit of mid century magic.

    Finding quaility mid century classic furniture pieces has become an art in itself...knowing where to look, knowing what to look for. ...and then choosing the right fabric to reupholster with.

    Having repeatedly been asked to sell the reupholstered vintage 50's Parker chairs we use in our Sydney store, we thought it was time to try and find some special pieces to reupholster just for you.

    We came up with these little beauties, a set of four late 50's Parker-esque day chairs, and three divine early 60's Fleur swivel loungers. We will sell them as singles, in the Bird fabric of your choice, pairs, or as sets of three/four.

    All sales or media enquiries should be directed to Bird Textiles Emporium on 02 8006 4522. The chairs can be shipped nationwide.

    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 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, September 20, 2011

    Little Bird, Little Bird takes flight

    Today our new bespoke and limited edition organic childrenswear label Little Bird, Little Bird took flight. Yippee!

    What’s Little Bird, Little Bird all about? Well, for years, customers have asked us to design a childrenswear range, it was on ‘the list’. The list was very long!

    In October 2010 I gave birth to my first child, Quincy...or Little Miss Q, as she is known to us. There’s nothing like having a baby to focus you, and in the moments between sleeping and feeding and the general mayhem of being a new mum, I wanted to make something special for her. She is such a gorgeous little poppet. Well, two and two makes four ......Little Bird, Little Bird just kinda happened.

    My greatest inspiration comes from children....seeing how switched on they are to the changes we need to make. Our future lies with the children….and they are really clued up when it comes to sustainability and taking care of this planet we live on. It made sense to make sustainable fashion for little people.

     

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011

    A Childs Christmas in Wales

    Today my friends, is my first day at home in Wales (UK), and this will be my first Christmas here in over 13 years! But most importantly, this will be childs first Christmas in Wales, and oh what a Christmas there shall be.

    As the playwright Dylan Thomas, from my hometown of Swansea, wrote in his famous poem, A Child’s Christmas in Wales,  ‘All the Christmases roll down toward the two-tongued sea, like a cold and headlong moon bundling down the sky that was our street; and they stop at the rim of the ice-edged fish-freezing waves, and I plunge my hands in the snow and bring out whatever I can find. In goes my hand into that wool-white bell-tongued ball of holidays resting at the rim of the carol-singing sea.’ Magic.

    So a little bit of birdy magic for my little girl this week. Follow this link for 16 seconds of animated magic, then read on.

    Bronia Sawyer describes herself as a contemporary experimental paper artist, jewellery maker and crafts woman. There is something quite magical about her work. She colours, folds, and rolls the pages of books to create these bird and flower-like plumes of colour. So simple, so beautiful, so magical. I just love them. 'Read more' for more inspiring images of her work.

    Time to curl up in front of the open fire, with a hot toddy, and wish for a sprinkling of snow on the ground in the morning. I couldn’t feel more northern hemisphere Christmassy if I tried. Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas wherever you are around the world.  Mama Bird x

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011

    The Too High Tea House

    Maverick Japanese architect Terunobu Fujimori is interested in "architecture before civilization," a time when people were more exposed to the elements. And if his Takasugi-an, or Too-High Tea House , is anything to go by you couldn’t really be more exposed.

    Perched 20 feet in the air, atop two chestnut trees, accessible by only free standing ladders, the Too-High Tea House,  more of a Too-High Tree House,  is a one of a kind. As are most of his buildings.  He makes his architectural models by hacking tree stumps into abstract, sculptural shapes using a chainsaw. And when he’s completed the final drawings for a project, he invites his clients to his weekend house in Nagano for a little ceremony he’s devised. Sitting in the private Too-High Tea House, he hands them a hand-rendered version of the final plans. “If they don’t like my design, I shake the building!” he says.

    We love.

    Tuesday, January 24, 2012

    Birds, Bats and Bees

    timber: Rolf Sachs
    timber: Rolf Sachs

    As you know, we’re a sucker for funky lookin bird houses. This little selection caught our eye.

    Back in 2008, around 20 international artists and designers came together to create habitats for threatened British species from recycled materials for a charity auction in London. The brief was set by environmental organisation, Adventure Ecology and auction house, Phillips de Pury & Company, as an attempt to upcycle the auction house’s waste in a creative way.

    The paper, plastic and wood discarded in the process of packing, moving and installing art works and exhibitions was up-cycled to create habitats for the rapidly declining numbers of bird, bat and bee species in urban areas.

    Not sure how practical they are, but we love anyway. :)

    Tuesday, March 13, 2012

    Oiva Toikka - Genius in Glass

    Finland’s oldest glass factory is located at the Nuutajärvi Glass Village, in the south of Finland. For over 200 years, glassblowing has been the central industry for this small community. It’s most famous resident is Oiva Toikka...he of the world reknowned Toikka glass Birds for Iittala, the Finnish design company.

    I made it over to Scandinavia in 2006. In search of all things on the holy grail of Scandinavian design, I had dreamt of collecting Toikka's Birds, and this was to be my first purchase. Oiva Toikka's glass birds were born in 1972, the year of my birth, so this journey felt somewhat predestined.

    A small golden, green-striped bird created for a Christmas exhibition mounted by the Nuutajärvi Museum in 1979 attracted the attention of a journalist at the family magazine, "Kotiliesi", which decided to offer it to its readers instead of a print as in previous years. The bird proved to be a great success. Since the inception of his glass bird creations, Oiva Toikka has created over 500 variations of glassblown birds including the annual bird release every year since 1996.

    Toikka glass birds are collected all around the world. Rarities are as eagerly tracked down and talked about as their real equivalents in the ornithological world. My small, but precious collection, sits on high in our living room, out of the reach of little hands, whilst their real equivalents fly by our windows their lungs full with the joys of song.

    Love, love, love. Sigh.

    Wednesday, March 21, 2012

    The Gorgeous and Magnificent Emma Magenta

    Some of you may have recognised our lovely bird logo as the work of author and artist, Emma Magenta. For those of you who haven’t had the pleasure, Emma is the author of a series of adult picture books; The Peril of Magnificent Love, A Gorgeous Sense of Hope, The Origin of Lament and The Gradual Demise of Phillipa Finch. Her books have resonated with thousands of women around the globe.

    Her most recent creation; The Gradual Demise of Phillipa Finch is Emma’s first foray into the world of animation and follows the emotional journey of Emma’s alter-ego Phillipa Finch, from death to life. A sixteen episode series screened on ABC1 in 2011 that seeks to bridge the gap between human emotion and technology via an interactive website.

    Phillipa is the pin up girl for the emotionally twarted. Each episode tumbles back through her past relationships, and follows her journey from the numb, torpid and stupified to the land of the emotionally fulfilled.