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.  

Crossroads Tour - The Horn, Astrolabes, and a Holy Place

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2015 on 8/30/2015 to Travels in Turkey
I am up and ready to go by 7:30, having three days remaining with a long list of things left to see. I step out onto my balcony to see that the sidewalk across the intersection has sprouted a rainbow of tables, and a grey haired man with a black cap and a brass shoe shine kit. I head downstairs to catch an early breakfast and am greeted by Baha and Erhan, one of his brothers, who apologize for the construction noise last night. "No worries," I say, "not your fault..."

Crossroads Tour - The Bosphorus

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2015 on 8/27/2015 to Travels in Turkey
I awaken from first decent sleep I've had since arriving here, to sun streaming through the embroidered and sequined curtain above my bed. What a glorious, sunny day! I decide to take the ferry to the Rumeli Fortress...

Names from the Secret History of the Mongols

Posted by Heather Daveno, compiled in 1988 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...

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. 

Crossroads Tour - The Topkapi Palace and Harem

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2015 on 8/23/2015 to Travels in Turkey
The Topkapi Palace, built between 1460-78, is a walled complex covering 700,000 square meters, comprised of three courtyards, several gardens and all the buildings you would expect to see in a royal administrative city. It was the residence of the Ottoman sultans until the middle of the 19th century, and also served as the administrative and educational center for the state...

I would find a great deal of inspiration here for my hats.

Crossroads Tour - Sleepless in the Sultanahmet

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2015 on 8/20/2015 to Travels in Turkey
I was up until 1 AM tearing my luggage apart, looking for my camera charger. Jackhammers pounded until well after midnight, demolishing the building next door, and a steady stream of bricks was heaved into the dumpster below my window until about 2 AM. Morning call to prayer wake me back up at 4:30 AM. I try to nap until 7:30 before giving up. I am so sleep deprived and exhausted that I can barely function. And now I cannot unlock my door to leave my room...

Crossroads Tour - The Grand Bazaar

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2015 on 8/16/2015 to Travels in Turkey
Touted as the first covered market in the world, The Grand Bazaar as large and noisy as you would expect a 5,000 store shopping mall to be. It was also much more colorful and brightly lit than I was prepared for, and I nearly reached complete sensory overload in the first ten minutes...

Upon my return home, my day in the Grand Bazaar inspired the hat featured here.

Crossroads Tour - The Carpet Salesman

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2015 on 8/13/2015 to Travels in Turkey
At last ... my first day in Istanbul ... 

History knew this city as Constantinople, the center of the medieval world dating back to 330 AD, the crossroads for East-West trade for centuries..it would become the jewel of the East and would see a golden era ushered in under Sultan Suleyman the Magnificent...

Crossroads Tour - Welcome to OZ !

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2015 on 8/9/2015 to Travels in Turkey
I arrived at Ataturk at 11 PM and got through visa processing fairly quickly. My luggage even showed up although I honestly did not expect it to. The luggage carousel was convenient to the Lost and Found desk, where I turned in a Diners Club credit card that I found on the floor near the visa desks. I took minor comfort in the fact that someone's day was worse than mine...

Crossroads Tour: Florence to Istanbul

Posted by Heather Daveno, written in May 2011, revised 2014 on 8/7/2015 to Travels in Turkey
It has been awhile since I have posted any travelogs... 

... I resume where I left off on my Crossroads Tour, departing Florence on a beautiful, calm Wednesday in May 2011, destination Istanbul ...