Welcome to The Nest!

The Nest is my repository of journals and papers.  If I've written it, you will find it here.  

Historica Tractatu houses my scholarly works, mostly relating to my medieval studies of Mongolian warfare, European herbology and Chinese embroidery. I have removed the copyrights on my works to allow them to be shared more freely, though I appreciate being credited on those shares.

My travels have heavily influenced my hatmaking, and are the 'back story' behind many of my designs.  
As of April 2019, my journals link to extended photo collections at Daveno Travels and Pinterest.

It's a Wrap!

Posted by Heather Daveno on 1/6/2019 to News & Miscellanae
Happy Twelfth Night! Now that the holidays are officially over - 
- welcome to the brand New Year!

I spent New Year's Day engaged in my traditional activity of updating my website.  It's an exercise for both looking back and looking forward at the same time...

Thank You All

Posted by Heather Daveno, Artisan Hatmaker on 12/31/2017 to News & Miscellanae
I owe my success in 2017 to each of you who visited my page, purchased a hat, or recommended me to a friend.  You not only supported a local artisan, but several charities as well, including World Central Kitchen, One Nation Appeal and Planned Parenthood.  Thank you from every part of my heart.

Block Printing and its impact on textile and book arts

Posted by Gordon Ellis, also known as Gordon Redthorn on 8/13/2017 to Historica Tractatu
A playing card woodblockThis article was written by a friend of mine who recently passed away (July 2017).  It was originally self-published in "A Boke of Dayes: A Journal of the Festival of St. Hildegard" (1994)  I have augmented this article with photos from a photo essay and a catalog of his works that were part of his estate.

Gordon not only carved blocks, but taught carving and printing as well, and volunteered much of his time to the furtherance of this art form.  I hope this article will inspire others to continue on that path.

Moroccan Epilogue

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 5/28/2017 to Travels in Morocco
"I did not see the things I expected to... and I saw what I never expected to see..."

After realizing that I had no suitcase, and in fact had added to my cargo, I spend much of the night photographing purchases in case they get lost, packing my most valued treasures into a shopping bag that would serve as my carry-on, and converting a tyvec grocery bag and a roll of duct tape into something resembling a suitcase that I can check in at the baggage counter.  

It is hard to leave the Riad Adriana this morning.  It is hard to leave Morocco...

The High Atlas Mountains in Morocco

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 5/24/2017 to Travels in Morocco
We arise to another rooftop breakfast, with a table laid in white linen and colorful small tagines filled with preserves and shreds of butter.  We are back in the lands of well-rounded breakfasts, complete with fresh yogurt and one-egg omelets, which will help to fuel our final day of this tour and a much anticipated excursion into the High Atlas Mountains.


Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 5/21/2017 to Travels in Morocco
We depart the Palais des Roses in Agadir and are soon on our way to Marrakech. You can almost hear everyone humming the Crosby, Still & Nash song to themselves ... 

After passing through an unremarkable landscape, our first glimpse of Marrakech is of a medina in the distance, with a mass of rooftop satellite dishes offering a stark contrast to both the sand colored walls and the brilliant blue sky...

From Ouarzazate to Taroudant, and a GPS Fail

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 5/17/2017 to Travels in Morocco
Having left the Ksar of the Ait Ben Haddou in Ouarzazate, we drive several more miles to our next destination of Taroudant.  We reach the downtown district but are unable to locate our hotel.  Mohamed and Doug both roll down their windows and start asking for directions to the street the hotel is on, but everyone they ask are tourists, just like we are.  

A phone call to the hotel provides hopeful direction to the medina...

A race, a fortress, and the Atlas Film Studios

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 5/12/2017 to Travels in Morocco
I wake up to catch the sunrise from my window at the Ait Ben Moro Kasbah. It's pretty cold this morning, with the golden sky reflecting in the skimming of ice on the swimming pool.  I'd give anything for a pair of wool socks. 

Today we leave Skoura for Taraudant to see the Kasbah Taourirt, and then to Ouarzazate and the Atlas Film Studio where 'Kingdom of Heaven' was filmed. 

Kasbah Ait Ben Moro and a Berber carpet shop

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 5/7/2017 to Travels in Morocco
After spending the morning at the Ikelene Mosque in Tinghir, followed by a walkthrough of the stunning Todra Gorge, we head to Skoura and the Kasbah Ait Ben Moro, where my traveling partners learn that if they cannot find me, they start looking for the nearest carpet loom ... 

To Tinghir and Tomboctou

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/30/2017 to Travels in Morocco
It's a leisurely morning in the camel camp, a place I would have been happy to stay for two more days, but there are still many sites to see on our Moroccan tour.  After breakfast, we mount our camels and say goodbye to the Erg Chebbe dunes, and head back to the Camel's House in Merzouga.  We find Mohamed there, refreshed and smiling and ready to roll on the next leg of our journey.

Into the Red Dunes

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/26/2017 to Travels in Morocco
We end our too-short stay in the exquisite Kasbah Moyahut, and find a young man in a white turban and blue caftan waiting for us out front.  It's Moha, our guide and camp concierge, who would take us into the Erg Chebbi dunes, the tallest in Morocco...

Monkeys, a White Horse, and a Kasbah

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/23/2017 to Travels in Morocco
After a final, fabulous breakfast in Fez, we pack the van and hit the road. It's going to be a long day (340 miles) but there will be a lot to see. Doug says there's snow in the mountains but the roads will probably be clear.  At least he hopes the roads will be clear ... 

Fez Day 2 - a tile factory, a cemetery and a souk.

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/19/2017 to Travels in Morocco
We're off to see the Souk!

Wafi, our local guide for today, meets is in front of the Hotel Volubilis, and rides with us to our first stop. In the car he gives us a little history of Fez el Bali, the original medina-city. It is the second oldest city in the world after Jerusalem, and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1989.  It lays claim to the first psychiatric hospital in the world, as well as the first surgical hospital, the oldest university and working library (established by a Muslim woman in 859) and the world's 3rd largest mosque behind Mecca and Medina.  Wafi mentioned that a US flag marks their veterinary hospital, which was also founded by a woman.

Fez - Volubilis and broken things ...

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/16/2017 to Travels in Morocco
Descending from the mountains and the Blue City of Chefchaouen, we are soon back in olive groves, cherry orchards, and fields of wheat and lettuce.  Mohamed suddenly pulls over ... there's an open air market that he thinks we should see ... 


Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/12/2017 to Travels in Morocco
After roaming around the Kasbah of the Oadaias and inspecting nearly every inch of the fortress, we leave the city of Rabat and head towards the legendary Blue City of Chefchaouen, passing groves of cork oaks, hedges of prickly pear, and hothouses filled with banana trees that seem to stretch out for several acres...

My Morocco Tour - Casablanca to Rabat

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/8/2017 to Travels in Morocco
We leave the Habbous District of Casablanca, with it's grand Municipal Building of carved plasterwork and arches, and the souk where I acquired a beautiful striped caftan and a tunic/pants set (yay, pants!).  We drive through another market filled with farmer's wares, and shop from our car for bananas, apples and the distinctive round loaves of Moroccan bread that we would munch on on the road...

Welcome to Casablanca!

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/6/2017 to Travels in Morocco
A red-headed cowboy leaning against a pillar just beyond baggage claim, lifts his gaze from his phone.  It's Doug Baum, our guide for the next two and a half weeks.  He offers to assist Brenda with her luggage, and looks around for mine.  I grin, and hold up my purse, and say "this is it, I'm traveling light this trip."  "Oh Girl!" he exclaims in a mix of concern and disbelief.  

"Nothing is going to ruin this trip.  I've got the critical things I need, and I'll buy new clothes in Fez.  Let's go!"

Morocco At Last

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 4/3/2017 to Travels in Morocco

After two weeks of flurried preparations at both home and office, and a very long night filled with unnecessary preparations, today has arrived.  I am on my way to Morocco.

It has taken me 3 days to pack...

Pro-bono projects - and Morocco!

Posted by Heather Daveno, hatmaker, intrepid traveler on 3/4/2017 to News & Miscellanae
The absence of blog posts is an indication of just how busy I have been over the last few months, supplying hats for street newspaper vendors, a theater group in Massachusetts, four Women's Marches, and a fashion museum.  I'm hoping to add the Seattle Science March to that list.

I am also pausing production for the rest of March, as I celebrate a landmark birthday in Morocco...

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 13th 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 IV - Symbolism in Chinese Embroidery

Posted by Heather Daveno, Artisan Hatter on 2/10/2016 to Textiles & Wearables
The Stitchery Series Part IV - Symbolism in Chinese Embroidery

Every symbol in Chinese textiles had significance and evolved from several philosophies and concepts.  The Chinese enjoy puns and plays on words, and often designs were used if their verbal sound or written character was similar to a quality or virtue.  Hence, because the words for bat and happiness sound similar, the bat became the symbol for happiness. 

The invention of the draw loom and the development of jacquards and brocades allowed patterns to be woven into the cloth. Common patterns included checks, diamonds, zig-zags, coins, clouds, dragons, lions, horses, flowers, birds and fish. Brocades were often over-embroidered to augment the woven patterns (a technique I now employ on my hats…)

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. 

The Stitchery Series Part II – Tools and Techniques

Posted by Heather Daveno, Artisan Hatter on 2/3/2016 to Textiles & Wearables
The Stitchery Series Part II – Tools and Techniques
Shown here is my collection of historical replica embroidery tools, which includes a bone needle, and two bronze needles.  The black packet is a vintage set of #5 sharps that are an inch long with round eyes. The oval object is a needle threader from my grandmother’s thread cabinet. Also shown here is my collection of thimbles – an embroidered silk one and another from jade are both of Chinese origin.  The other three are from Turkey, in porcelain, enameled metal, and granulated metal at the end, which has become my favorite... 

The Stitchery Series Part I - History and Fibers

Posted by Heather Daveno, Artisan Hatter on 1/31/2016 to Textiles & Wearables
The Stitchery Series Part I - History and Fibers

Embroidery - to decorate the surface of a cloth with thread or yarn - is a process that dates back to very ancient times. 

The Bayeux Tapestry, shown here, is not actually a tapestry!  It is however, one of the most recognizable embroideries in Europe, depicting the events leading up to the Battle of Hastings and conquest of England in 1066 by William, Duke of Normandy, known as William the Conqueror. The work measures about 230 feet long,  and consists of several panels of linen, worked with a variety of stitches in wool threads... 

This series of blog notes will start with a brief and decidedly Chinese-centric historical overview, and then delve into materials and technique.  I will try to demonstrate how embroidery can be combined with other techniques to bring new color and texture to your own textile projects.

Andalucia 2012 - Granada's Albayzin District

Posted by Heather Daveno on 10/4/2015 to Travels in Spain
My first breakfast in Granada was in the modern district, at a cafe that seems to attract every cop in the city for their morning coffee. My last breakfast will be in the historic district of Albayzin, followed by a day of leisurely walk-abouts as I savor my final day in Spain.

Andalucia 2012 - Granada and the Alhambra

Posted by Heather Daveno on 10/1/2015 to Travels in Spain
When your concierge says "you only need to be at the train station five minutes ahead of departure," take him at his word. So far this trip, my hotels have been 5-10 minutes away from the train station, and a 5 or 6 Euro fare.

In spite of his suggestion, I arrive an hour early for my next destination - Granada and the famous Moorish Red Fortress known as the Alhambra...

Andalucia 2012 - The Alcazar and Surrounds

Posted by Heather Daveno, edited 2019, originally posted on 9/27/2015 to Travels in Spain
The Alcazar was the castle of King Alfonso X, known as The Learned, King of Castile, Toledo, Leon, Seville, Cordoba and a few other cities. He ruled from 1252 until his death in 1284 and spent nearly two decades in what would become a failed pursuit to become Emperor of Christian Europe. In spite of draining his treasury by remaining in a state of near constant war, Alfonso also promoted a blossoming in the arts, sciences, and law. He is commemorated in the US House of Representatives as one of the world's most influential lawgivers.

Andalucia 2012 - The Jewish Quarter

Posted by Heather Daveno on 9/24/2015 to Travels in Spain
I walk along a park of hard-packed yellow clay where I would expect to find grass or pavement. Here's a statue with spikes at its feet, which I mistake for a deterrent until I start seeing spikes elsewhere ... at the base of statues, on the ridges of structures... spikes impaling a variety of fruits. I later learn that the citizenry use these spikes to feed the birds rather than to keep them away... 

Soon I arrive at a labyrinth of streets known as the Jewish Quarter.

Andalucia 2012 - Cordoba and the Mezquita

Posted by Heather Daveno on 9/20/2015 to Travels in Spain
Cordoba is almost as much like OZ as Istanbul was.  My introduction to this city is a drive through a very crowded street, along a stone wall which I would discover is the Mezquita, a model of which I saw at the Islamic Science Museum in Istanbul last year, and a contributing factor to my decision to come here...

Andalucia 2012 - Toledo

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in Spring 2012, revised on 9/17/2015 to Travels in Spain
Having become enamored of Islamic  arts and architecture, my next travels take me to Andalucia, in search of the remnants of medieval Spain when it was under Moorish rule ... 

Names from the Secret History of the Mongols

Posted by Heather Daveno, compiled in 1988, posted on 8/25/2015 to Historica Tractatu

The Secret History of the Mongols was written for the royal Mongol family after the death of Chinghis Khan in 1227 AD. It details the history of the Mongol peoples from the birth of the first Mongol, Batachikhan, through the ascension of Ogodei Khan to the Mongolian throne. The Secret History is considered a primary source for the genealogy of the ruling families of Mongolia up to the beginning of the 14th century.

Reconstructing an Ulan Baator Boot

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

Reconstructing 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.