Welcome to The Phoenix Files!

This blog is a collection of papers and how-to articles I have written over the past 25+ years, as well as my travel journals and announcements.  Scholarly works from "The Library" on my old website, are labeled here as "Historica Tractatu." 

My travels have had heavy influence on my work and are the 'back story' behind many of my designs. Some of my older journals are revised from the original, and most link to photo albums on Facebook.  

Making a Tibetan Maikhan

Posted by Heather Daveno, ©1985, revised 2016 on 2/21/2016 to DIY
Making a Tibetan Maikhan
The maikhan of the modern day Tibetan Plateau and Mongolian Steppes is a sprawling network of poles and ropes, supporting a felt of yak hair that is so fine, that visitors comment that these shelters offer only minimal protection from wind and cold. They are large enough to house a modest Tibetan nomadic family. They more resemble the tents of the modern day Arabic nomads, than the stately structures of thirteenth century Tibet.

This article will walk you through my process for making this style of tent, how I adapted it to the Pacific NW, and my experience camping in it.

The Stitchery Series: Part V - Applique and Other Decoration

Posted by Heather Daveno, Artisan Hatter on 2/14/2016 to Textiles & Wearables
The Stitchery Series: Part V - Applique and Other Decoration

This is the last in this series, which has focused on (mostly) Chinese embroidery as a surface embellishment.  This segment will cover a few other forms of surface decoration that can be combined with embroidery to bring new color, texture and uniqueness to your own textile projects and wearable art pieces.

 

The Stitchery Series: Part III – Embroidery Stitches

Posted by Heather Daveno, Artisan Hatter on 2/7/2016 to Textiles & Wearables
The Stitchery Series: Part III – Embroidery Stitches

Textiles from Han Dynasty tombs in China show that the embroidery used during this time period incorporated Satin Stitch, Stem Stitch, Peking Knot, Chain Stitch and Couching. 

      Peking Knot (da zi) – called seed knot in early centuries and came to be known as Forbidden Stitch, when it was outlawed from embroidery factories during the 1940’s because it was thought that women were going blind in their extensive use of it. Current literature attributes this to a very old urban legend.  I have personally lost more of my eyesight from working with metallic couching, than I ever have working with this stitch...

Building an Ulan Baator Boot

Posted by Heather Daveno on 8/24/2015 to Textiles & Wearables

The Ulan Baator Boot

Several years ago, a friend and I stumbled across these boots in a military antiques shop in Seattle  (now closed).  We recognized them as traditional Mongolian footwear, and were informed by the shopkeeper that they are still manufactured in Ulan Baator for the military. 

This article and pattern is copyright free. 

Replicating a Kingfisher Feather Hairpin

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in 1986, revised on 4/20/2014 to Textiles & Wearables
Replicating a Kingfisher Feather Hairpin
Kingfisher feather ornaments adorned the ladies of the Chinese court since the T'ang Dynasty. These brilliant blue feathers came from water kingfishers and wood kingfishers, which were common in China until demand for their feathers nearly caused their extinction...