Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Nature inspires

Well, the kimono quilt has been delayed by a day so today we will have a bit of a nature lesson. This little bird is a Mejiro, or known in English as a Japanese white-eye. A common garden bird throughout Japan, they are easily attracted in winter with a piece of fruit, apples or tangerine skewered on some nails poking up through a board on my garden wall. The applique was my first attempt, not too accurate, but after a number of appearances in quilts has gotten better. The carved Mejiro came out of a scrap of wood at the summer jamboree with no photo reference. I have made several low relief carvings of Mejiro as gifts but have no pictures.

The Brown-eared bulbul or Hiodori is another resident that loves a taste of fruit on the feeder.

At my former house I put out a glass of juice and these birds drank it to the very bottom every day, perching on the rim and reaching for the last drop.
This group of pictures are carved in low relief and painted with acrylics. Other birds are three Sparrows and an Oriental greenfinch. Only the Bulbul has yet to make it into a quilt.


  1. You are so talented.What sort of tools do you use for the wood carving?

    I love your applique bird as well.

  2. Julie your wood carving is totally amazing to me. I can't even imagine doing it but I am in awe. We have tons of sparrows here, but nothing like your Mejiro. There is a cardinal that serenades me daily and I'm hoping that means she's building a nest right outside my bedroom windows. We have Finches right now and bluebirds in their house and yesterday my husband said the wood ducks had returned. They live in a little house out beside the lake. I've seen only a couple of robins but I know they're back. It will be some time before the hummingbirds get here. My mother loved birds with a passion so we all fee them in her honor. blessings, marlene

  3. Thank you so much for sharing these birds from a Japanese garden! I have long been an admirer of Japanese literature (in translation:), anime and fiber arts ... and I love the common birds here in my world (the U.S.) ... but it never even occurred to me to wonder what kind of birds greet the daily Japanese person! How wonderful!

    :) linda

  4. My husband and I are bird lovers, watchers too.Thanks for sharing your birds with us

  5. What beautiful birds you have. We have bird feeders in Texas and enjoy watching the birds that come to feed.

  6. Ahh... kindred spirits! What a cute birdie! And your applique is beautiful.