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What I'm Making Now: Magpies - Two for Joy!

My current work in progress - needle felting magpies.

I am currently making a Magpie sculpture as part of my FLOCK collection.

As spring has sprung I am hearing and seeing more and more wonderful English birds around the park and in the trees. Alas, we have a very small courtyard space, which whilst we have put up a bird feeder, isn't quite as enticing as the park behind our house!

Familiar Friends.

What I do hear every day and see fliting across the skies and roads, are magpies. With their loud chattering calls, of chack-chack-chackachack-chack. Beautifully magnificent in flight, the magpie bounces along looking sleek and friendly when on the ground, looking for food.

One for Sorrow, Two for Joy.

The old familiar Magpie nursery rhyme, always comes to mind when I see a magpie. I always look for the second bird, never satisfied until I have found their partner. "Where's your wife?" I ask.

One for sorrow,
Two for joy,
Three for a girl,
Four for a boy,
Five for silver,
Six for gold,
Seven for a secret,
Never to be told.

Research tells me that this rhyme has, like much of English folk-lore, had many incarnations and purported origins. I am just happy to know it. To call upon the delights of seeing two magpies happy together, knowing their loyalty and deep, monogamous connection. Its like a moment of sense in a world of chaos. So this is why when I was inspired to make a magpie, there was no way I could conceive to make just one!

Two Magpies - Needle Felting Work in Progress

Colour matching.

Originally, I had assumed that magpies are black and white. But in fact they have iridescent blue and green feathers, with even some soft purple accents. When rendering nature in wool, it is fascinating to really study something that we are familiar with. When we look a bit closer, and spend a little more time noticing things, it can reveal a wealth of details and often surprising subtleties that would have otherwise passed us by.

More coming soon...

Stay tuned for an update on the final sculpture in the next few weeks. If you are interested in seeing your own favourite bird immortalised in wool, Contact me to start the conversation on how we can create a piece just for you.

What birds are you seeing in your gardens and parks? Let me know in the comments below.

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