Birds Eggs


A couple of Saturdays ago I started the weekend in a very black mood. A combination of another wet, cold weekend, without light in the valley, and probably some squabbling children. I took myself out of the house and found this little ‘Observers Book of Birds Eggs’ in an antiques shop. Those little range of books are so lovely; i remember them from when I was small. It gave me a little idea.

The nest is one I found in the courtyard last year; blown down from the ivy on the old mill chimney. It’s full of turquoise fibres and threads. I don’t know who it belonged to, but it was a bird with an eye for colour (The egg doesn’t belong with the nest. It was found separately. I just keep it in there).

So, with no particular end in mind, I started my little Birds Eggs project, to try and encourage in the Spring.

Cutting out the eggs from scraps of painted papers

and arranging them like eggs in specimen cases. Hattie asked why they were pointing the wrong way up (I said they always go that way up in books (but I don’t know why!))

Looking through the books I found that I had more interesting papers than there were colourful eggs, so we all sat round and made up birds names! I used colour charts and bird books for inspiration too. There are lots of real birds in there, but made up ones too.

An egg is all possibility. Who know what a Ringed Spiggot looks like? Or a Red Banthorp? Actually, a red Banthorp would be short and plump, with a black cap and a angry temper; he’s named after a particularly frightening teacher from primary school.

A Jellicoe is named after a teacher too. One with a penchant for pink shirts. Bemily is a little girl I know and Little Jayne is her Mum. They’ve moved away and I miss them.

I will get on with some proper work now. But that was fun…

11 thoughts on “Birds Eggs

  1. I love these Kate, they brightened up my day and your made up names brought a big smile to my face. Sue

  2. I was pointed to your blog by my friend Sue Leslie. What a lovely post and as a creative and lover of birds l think you have some brilliant ideas and artistic skill. I am feeling very inspired and want to add an observers bird egg book to my collection!

  3. Lovely! Really like the made up birds’ names and their characters. Sounds like possibilities for storytelling. Thanks for sharing:).

  4. As a birder who had just ‘confessed’ to still having a fifty year old blackbirds egg my first thought was that that egg did not belong in that nest! Strangely I had just got my Observer’s book out 2 days ago. Love the colours and our 50’s dining room walls were Duck Egg Blue . .still a favourite colour.

  5. Are you able to identify the egg or the nest Cat? Blackbirds, blue tits and great tits nest near where I found the nest. It’s such a beautiful little thing. x

  6. They will be Barbara. They’re not going to be in the new exhibition at Heart, probably somewhere else local. And almost certainly at this years Open Studios in July. Kate

  7. I have the same book kate from when i was a lad ..the egg in the nest looks like a song thrush or even a starling maybe ?

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