Friday, March 30, 2012

Anandamayi Arnold for International Orange

The inimitable Anandamayi Arnold, a paper artist and Castle in the Air teacher, is one of fifteen artists contributing to International Orange, a celebration of the 75th anniversary of the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge. For her part in the exhibition, Anandamayi is creating seven life-sized paper dresses commemorating the Fiesta Queens who attended the opening gala of the Bridge in 1937. In this video she shares her thoughts on the making of the dresses and the stories which inspired them.

The premiere party for International Orange will take place on Thursday, May 24, at San Francisco's Fort Point. For a preview of all of the art and festivities surrounding this grand anniversary, visit the International Orange website.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Festive Flowers and a Tutorial

The creators at Honestly...WTF surprised and flattered us recently with these giant rainbow-hued crepe paper flowers. The blog's editor visited the shop and was so impressed with the pom-pom flowers made by our very own Daniel Orona that she taught herself to make them. Now she is sharing the process in a brilliantly photographed tutorial on her site. Thank you!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Atelier Days

We've started "atelier days" in the upstairs studio at the shop, with different Castle crew members having a go at creating new wonders. Here is one from a session between Ulla Milbrath and John McRae where they created different Easter baskets using goodies from the store. Atelier days are so much fun, whether we're creating or just waiting to see what the other artists dream up. Come and see for yourself!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Magnolia Flowers on Martha Stewart

Spring has arrived, and we're on the edge of our seats waiting for the season's first blossoms to appear. If you're feeling the anticipation too, why not take matters into your own hands like our friend Morgan Levine has? Morgan created these lovely magnolia blossoms from our florist crepe, demonstrating her project this week on Martha Stewart's television show and website.

Judging from the response we've been getting, it seems everyone is ready to take a turn helping Lady Spring step out. Thank you, Morgan and Martha!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pirate & Hoopoe

"I want to write the music for this book!"
--Anton Sanko, Emmy Award winning composer,
National Geographic's Great Migrations

Dromedary Press is proud to invite you into the world of Pirate & Hoopoe, an illustrated adventure novel written by Diarmid Cammell and illustrated by Karima Cammell.

"Wall Street meets The Jungle Book" is how some people describe Pirate & Hoopoe. The talking animals of Spring Valley have lived in peace for centuries, but change is afoot when a rapacious band of land developers arrives to exploit this enchanted place. Through good sense, wits, and a bit of magic, the animals show the men how to discover life's true treaures. Illustrator Karima Cammell says: "Pirate & Hoopoe was conceived during the 1990s, a time when society's desires seemed split between environmentalism and quick-fix convenience. As I watched the dot-com bubble grow, then burst, I had concerns that an inspirational story of good will trumping corporate greed was no longer relevant. But this longstanding battle is sadly back in the news in a big way, so now feels like the right time for Pirate & Hoopoe to join the fray and spark some discussion."

Following in the tradition of Treasure Island and Robinson Crusoe, Pirate & Hoopoe is a 21st-century adventure novel for readers of all ages. Children will love the animals' quest for treasure and the pratfalls of Pirate's Cronies. Adult readers will appreciate the story's social and literary allusions.Pirate & Hoopoe is 272 pages long, features 23 full-page watercolor illustrations, and comes with a special envelope containing two surprises inset into the back cover.
DIARMID CAMMELL (b.1945, d.2009) was a storyteller, mystic, acclaimed translator, and scholar. The youngest son of Scottish poet Charles Richard Cammell, he was a renowned actor as a child and an accomplished photographer as an adult. Following a youth in 1960s London, Diarmid spent his later life in and around the San Francisco Bay Area.
KARIMA CAMMELL (b.1974) is a painter and book publisher. In 2001 she opened Castle in the Air, a celebrated shop, studio, classroom, and gallery which recognizes the internal life of the artist and all those who dare to live their dreams. Karima lives with her husband and two daughters in her native Berkeley, California.

by Diarmid Cammell, illustrated by Karima Cammell
ISBN-13: 978-0-9788966-0-7
Price $55.00 ($50.00 direct)
272 Pages, Hardcover, 7.25" x 9.75"
Publication Date: February 2012

Full Press Release
High-Resolution Cover
Interior Page A
Interior Page B
Interior Page C

Dromedary Press encourages you to support your local independent bookseller. 
To find bookshops near you, visit

Readers can follow these links to buy Pirate & Hoopoe
Dromedary Press
Castle in the Air Online Shoppe

Retailers may order Pirate & Hoopoe(ISBN 978-0-9788966-0-7) from Baker & Taylor.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

An Evening of Traditional Song

Please join Castle in the Air in welcoming master folksinger Norman Kennedy on Saturday, March 17, as he shares an evening of Scottish ballads and folk songs. Norman has also promised us an ancient Irish song or two, in honor of Saint Patrick's Day.

The terms "national treasure" and "living legend" get bandied about perhaps more frequently than they should, but in Norman Kennedy we truly have both. He is a Scottish-born folksinger and hand-weaver who learned both trades from "the old folk" in Aberdeen and the Outer Hebrides during his youth in the 1950s and '60s. Early on in his career he was recognized for his talent, and was chosen to represent Scotland at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965.

Kennedy went on to build a career and, more importantly, a life defined by performing, weaving, and teaching since then, mainly in his adopted home of rural Vermont. Thanks to his efforts to preserve these traditions, in 2003 Norman was named an NEA National Heritage Fellow, the first Scotsman to be awarded this unparalleled distinction.

I've had the honor of knowing Norman Kennedy as a family friend for years, and have seen him perform at venues as varied as a sold-out show at Carnegie Hall to impromptu concerts in friends' living rooms. To say he has magic in his voice is no understatement -- he sang a charm over my cup of tea while I was going through my difficult pregnancy with my first child, and she's now well on her way to becoming an accomplished Scottish folk musician in her own right.

Seating is very limited for this special event. Please call Castle in the Air at (510)204-9801 to make your reservation for one or more seats.

Norman Kennedy: An Evening of Traditional Song
Saturday, March 17, 7:30PM
Castle in the Air
1805 Fourth Street, Berkeley
$20 to $10 sliding scale at the door
Reservations required: (510)204-9801