Salley Mavor grew up in the seaside village of Woods Hole, Massachusetts, in a household full of treasures and creative ideas. She learned to sew as a child and has been playing with a needle and thread ever since. At home, there were always art supplies close at hand and a sense that time was available for creative pursuit. Drawing with crayons was never enough for Salley. She remembers feeling that her pictures were not finished until something real was glued, stapled or sewn to them. Today, Ms. Mavor’s fabric relief artwork is an outgrowth of her childhood fascination with handwork. A review of the recent exhibit, Salley Mavor: Sewn Stories at the Brattleboro Museum of Art in Vermont reads, “In astonishing detail, Mavor’s work above all conveys an artist who is entirely present. Beyond merely illustrating a story or poem, she brings us into it. Surely her thread is gossamer, her fingers unimaginably nimble.”
A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Ms. Mavor has illustrated many children’s books using her unique blend of materials, found objects and sewing techniques. Her craft how-to book, Felt Wee Folk: Enchanting Projects, includes directions and patterns for making a variety of wee folk dolls. Her newest children’s book, Pocketful of Posies: A Treasury of Nursery Rhymes won the 2011 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award and the 2011 Golden Kite Award. The original fabric relief artwork from the book is touring the country.