Stories from the Studio: Global Chicken Connections


H E L L O F R I E N D S !


One of my great joys in creating Chicken Footstools is the way they allow me to connect with other people. Broadening these connections was the inspiration behind the project “When Feathers Come Together: A Global Chicken Collection”, completed in April 2022. Our studio, in collaboration with six other female fiber artists around the world, created a flock of 12 chickens that were displayed together at the Crossroads Hotel in the arts district of Kansas City, Missouri. The chickens were wild and fabulous, and the event was a true celebration of what can come from women working creatively together. We learned a LOT from our experiences through the project and in many ways, it continues to be a source of inspiration for our studio.

Over the past two years, I have had the honor of visiting three of these exceptional collaborating artists in the studios where they create. The first meeting was last summer with Marjolein Dallinga in Gore, Quebec. This spring I visited both Nadia Rein in Whitwick, England, and Sibylle von Eschenlohr in Reutlingen, Germany.


Each of these women, their artwork, and their environments are delightfully unique. The distinctiveness of each shone through their chickens, especially when the complete collection was on display all together. Marjolein’s beautiful studio is nestled next to her home in the woods northwest of Montreal. Nadia works from the front room of her home in a charming English village where sheep grace the surrounding countryside. Sibylle’s studio is located in a historic machine factory with amazing industrial windows in a bustling German city.


During my time with these women, we shared life stories and new ideas, cups of tea, and homemade meals. We talked of different cultures, the expansiveness of travel, mothering, and perspectives on our sense of “home” at this point in our lives. They were generous to demonstrate their felt-making processes and quick to share wisdom gained through their creative business journeys. Although our backgrounds and lifestyles are unique, we connected through our common interest in fiber art processes and the desire to add something of value to the world through the work of our hands.

What an incredible gift to have now met each of these women in person, deepening relationships that began with a simple invitation to collaborate in making a global chicken collection. In reflection, we all agreed that although no one knew what to expect at the outset of the project, we all enjoyed the process, and were thrilled by the results.

I hope you enjoy these glimpses into the lives of these creative women and their work. I certainly have!

Brightest regards,

Sally & thecgf studio


PS — Who remembers Little Peter’s amazing pleated felt feathers from the global collection? We are thrilled to be working with the oh-so-fun Argentinian sisters of Amalana Felt again on a small, special collection. Stay tuned!

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