Mystic Lake

Did you ever design an Art Gown for the birds, in particular Ducks, Swans & Pigeons?


Probably not, but if so, then you might know Ceramic Artist Belén Soto from Arcilla y Fuego.  Mystic Lake is dedicated to her.


You see, I bought an adorable Black Drake from Belén . As he is lonely & looking for a wife, Belén & I started a Marriage Agency for Ducks. I’m hoping we will expand to Swans & Pigeons in the near future.


Already Belén has designed 2 beautiful candidates, Lúa and Mar. Soon a wedding gown will be needed. I am hoping the duck bride to be & all future swan & pigeon brides will love this gown.


Depending on the natural light, Mystic Lake magically changes from grey to blue. The best blue tones were captured at daybreak on a sunny day. Grey was exposed best on sunny afternoons.


Well, Art Gowns don’t hatch from eggs, so let’s get “down” to the making of Mystic Lake.


White satin was draped over a strapless long-line corset bra that opens in the back. As a real model will eventually wear her, I had to be practical.

swan-b10 swan-b7The next item I needed was feathers.

Yet, I am a vegetarian, so I decided to make feathers out of Swiss dotted net & cotton muslin.

The fabrics were hand sewn together, the cotton being larger than the net.

Then the cotton was sliced into sectionsswan-b5 & frayed by hand.swan-b6

Finally, a strip of feather perfection was added to the décolletage.

The skirt, with a velcro closure lined up under the corset’s opening, was added to the bodice.swan-b10

swan-b11The tail feathers were now needed.

I made a waistband. It closes in the back w/Velcro. I sewed bars across the center back of the band, so the tails could hook on.

First came a major white tail.

Then there was a grey voile tail, with fake feather bustle that hooked onto the white tail.



Finally, a decorative black & grey tail piece topped off he tail feathers quite nicely.

Lastly, wings of grey voile were attached to her sides.

It took days to fray the feathers for the wings.


When the back looks as above, the front looks as below.



This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Mystic Lake made a special beauty shot for the photographer who is coming in a week to view her. Looks like she could be the first Art Gown to be worn by a beautiful model.


As we know, Art Gowns refuse to do housework. They especially hate the smell of the cleaning products. So, Mystic & the Art Gowns are all going shopping, while I clean the bathroom.


Mystic Lake Designed by Resa MCconaghy – Summer – 2016

Photographed by Resa McConaghy – September – 2016

© All Rights Reserved ©


Again, special thanks to my dear friend, Belén. I am very excited to see the next Duck Bride Candidate. Be sure to watch for it on her blog, Arcilla y Fuego


Visit Belén‘s online shop Tienda de Ceramica.



I also thank Marina Kanavaki – Art Towards A Happy Day for sending me a gift of art & music.

“Atom Flowers” © Artist Marina Kanavaki – 2016

It was  inspiring to listen to MK-O while I created. Hear them on

“Black Drake” © Artist Belén Soto – 2015

Finally, a sweet thank you to Le Drake Noir. It was Belen’s post Pájaro Negro / Drake Noir that started this whole crazy happening.


118 thoughts on “Mystic Lake

  1. My tux still locked in the closet with its bow ties.
    You and your wonderful creative skills
    – really don’t leave it a chance, having a normal life.
    It’s complete insane about all those breathtaking gowns… 😀 😀 😀

    You are amazing again and again, dear Resa… 🙂

    1. Dear darling LDN,
      I feel sorry for your poor tux! What can an Art Gown designer do?
      Is the snappy guard dog still watching the door?
      Well, if your tux can’t live a normal life on earth…. perhaps he can become an astronaut, and live on the space station?
      I think the bow ties would look very cute on a space suit. 😀 😀 😀
      Hugs & kisses to you!

      1. Dear Resa – if my tux was turning round the moon or the earth – it would still have dreams about your amazing gowns – agree why do we newer see a n astronaunt wearing a bow tie.? 😀

        1. I don’t know?
          Space suits are so boring. A bow tie would be the perfect accent! You could never go wrong. All colors & patterns would work. 😀
          Also… it is so much better than a regular tie. A regular tie would be floating around all over the place, and perhaps get caught in gears and such when doing space walks and repairs. 😀
          I think NASA should revisit the space outfits! xo

      2. The snappy guard dog have given up to do the job – the tux is too much in love with your gowns – so it isn’t afraid even of a snappy guard dog – honestly you do an excellent work… 🙂

        1. Oh! Well, i will miss the snappy guard dog. After all, he has been on closet guard since “Atlantis Mermaid Love-In”, the most beautiful Art Gown dedicated to you.
          I hope he is retired to a wonderful life of cushions & bones.
          Atlantis sends her love to you, and many pets to Snappy! 😀 xo

    1. Thank you! The beauty of an Art Gown is that anything can be an inspiration! Ducks are really fabulous, and it was hard to compliment their gorgeousness. I gave it my best shot!

  2. Breathtaking, Resa! Mystic Lake is absolutely gorgeous! Everything about it is just perfect! Chapeau my dearest friend! Admiring your creativity and endless patience!!!!!!! 🙂
    Black Drake is going to have trouble deciding, isn’t he?! Love Belén’s work.
    ps thank you so much for your sweet words.
    Sending you love and many many hugs!
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 🙂

    1. Thank you, Marina!
      It took me almost 3 months to make her. Not everyone understands the dedication to create art. Especially, many do not see something like my Art Gowns as art. They are seen as clothes.
      Your music was such an inspiration to me while I worked away on Mystic Lake. I thank you very much for this amazing gift.
      Hugs & xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 😀

  3. I agree with the others, Resa! Mystic Lake is another beauty. A stunner! Love the photographs, too. With the natural light streaming through the windows, they shine and shimmy, too. Thrill and Quill Power!


    1. Thank you, Theadora!
      We are all free to create. However, not everyone on earth knows this, or more importantly respects this.
      I am so lucky to have this opportunity, and very fortunate to know someone like you who appreciates creativity as it attempts to inspire good.
      You are very intelligent, & I cannot thank you enough for reading & liking my Art Gowns.

  4. An absolute Haute Couture master piece Resa! Love the name Mystic Lake, it reflects perfectly the colors and fabrics you used for the gown. Love the fact that it changes color depending on the hour of the day. It is amazing how much work goes in, how many hours of hand work needs to be done for a Haute Couture piece! You’re super talented, skilled, a visionary, a story teller, a magic maker of super natural beauty! A creative genius with an endless patients is a super power combination, just STUNNINGLY GORGEOUS and the award goes to you! Much love and hugs my lovely DESIGNER friend!

    1. Dear Eva,
      Thank you, dear talented friend!
      You are correct to say she is completely hand made. There is not 1 machine stitch in the entire dress, so yes, she qualifies as Haute Couture.
      Of course I can sew by machine & am classically trained in pattern making, sewing, draping and many hand crafts. I even have an honors degree in knit design and technology.
      As old fashioned as all my skills are, I value them. They are fast fading from the planet.
      I bask in your compliments, as they mean a lot to me.
      Hugs & kisses to you, Eva!

      1. Those talents are all so wonderful to have Resa. I can sew and make patterns as well, I have never tried draping and I wasn’t good at knitting, but I always made my own clothes back in the old times which involved a lot of handwork as well. So I know how time consuming is to make an all hand stitched piece and your gowns a really complex, very detailed and beautifully thought out master pieces which take a lot of skills to complete. So I take a bow my designer friend because you’re amazingly talented and skilled!
        Hugs & kisses back to you and may you have a most wonderful weekend as well my lovely friend! XOXO

  5. The sorceress threaded her magic needle with silver thread. Back and forth she wove enchantments into the garment. Then, as the moon rose over the black waters of the Mystic lake she flung the dress high, high into the air, She watched as the elegant bird stretched her new found wings. Flew high and high and disappeared.

    1. OMG!
      Your comment could/should be a book.
      I can only say how thrilled I am that Mystic Lake inspired you to such a thought. I am honored!
      Well, now that she is flying high,so am I!
      Much love to you, Virginia,
      Much love now, and always.

      1. You do inspire me. Have you read the Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale – The Wild Swans. About a sister who knitted six shirts for her brothers who had turned them into swans. When she flung the shirts over her brothers they were restored to their human form. I do so love fairy tales. I do so adore your fairy tale gowns. Again and again they inspire me to tell stories long into the watchful night. XOOOXXXX Virginia

        1. That is not my most remembered fairy tale, but I remember it. I love it.
          My persona fave was Rapunzel.
          ❤ I laugh here because I do get carried away by my girls (Art Gowns) & they are my fairy tale. They seem real, at times. xoxoXOXO

  6. Dear Resa – spectacular as always! You have a marvelous way of weaving your creative genius with others to generate a community where artistic endeavor is amplified and shared. Thank you! Thank you!!!

    1. Dear Rebecca,
      What a lovely comment!
      From Art Gown #1, they have all been shared. No Art Gown stands alone. My hope is 1 day that they can be better used to help the charities they ambassador. I love that Aquileana & Christy picked “Let Girls Learn” to be Mnemosyne’s charity.
      Anyway, Mystic Lake is supposed to go on a model, & shot by a photographer. This may be a step towards better helping the charities. What if a movie star modeled one? Then she could sign …photos or poster & the pet charity could auction them off for donations?
      Just throwing ideas out there!
      I can’t thank you enough for visiting & commenting. It means a lot to me, as I value your giving intelligence.

      1. You have so many marvelous ideas. Linking charities to art, literature , poetry, mythology and theatre speaks to the heart of humanity for these are embedded in our DNA. When we share, we participate in our survival. Powerful stuff!!! Hugs and love coming your way…

  7. Oh Resa!! It’s more stunning than I even could have imagined! The feathers in the back, grey fabric that turns blue in certain light, how the back has the unexpected line down the back… Oh how beautiful it is! The corset bra top is the perfect style to go with the flowing bottom. I could go on and on… LOVE it!! ❤

    1. Dear Christy,
      Thank you! ❤ Also, a big TY for selecting (w/Aquileana) "Let Girls Learn" to be the charity Mnemosyne ambassadors.
      I got lucky with the grey/blue thing. I didn't notice that quality until I began shooting. Then I saw that quite often the gown looked grey on the top half & blue on the bottom half.
      One sunny dawn I looked through the lens & said … she looks totally blue. For 20 minutes I shot, as the blue faded.
      Much love, many hugs & xxxx

  8. Oh my God!!
    Thank you Resa, thank you very much !!!!
    It is really beautiful, so elegant … I can not find words.
    I am very proud to know a wonderful artist like you, again, you’ve made your magic and have designed an amazing work of art.
    … And is dedicated to this happy ceramist, it is a pleasure and a great honor, thanks again.
    Lúa & Mar ask me if they could be the model, they also love the ArtGown.
    The feathers are a success, hard work, but very good results !!!!
    Like Drake, I want a giant poster for my new study, we talked.
    Much love & many hughs.

    1. Dear Belén,
      Lúa & Mar would be excellent models for the gown. However, the photographer says she has a model.
      It is for the best, as we want Drake to have an opinion that is not based on the beauty of an Art Gown, but on the beauty of the candidates.
      Drake waits impatiently for the next candidate.
      Unfortunately, he has gained a kilo from eating chocolates.
      I am enrolling him at a gym on Monday.
      He does not fit his wedding clothes. He must avoid all chocolates.
      Do you have any advice?
      Much love
      Hugs & besos

      1. Dear Resa,
        The girls agree with your opinion, the most important is the inner beauty, but feel envious of the model 🙂
        The third candidate performs his photo shoot now, in the afternoon will choose the better images.
        Well, Drake and his weight problems … the most appropriate sport is swimming, you can also try with the “spinning” (necessary to lower the bike seat) as a soundtrack recommend “Metallica”, helps to increase the rate of pedaling; )
        When he lived in Vigo, we visited a famous nutritionist, for critics cases, like Drake recommended diet of “clothespin at the peak” 😦
        Of course, we do not pay the bill from the nutritionist, and we leave to buy chocolates 🙂 🙂
        Hugs& Besos

  9. Reblogged this on Arcilla y fuego and commented:
    Nuestra querida amiga Resa ha diseñado un maravilloso vestido inspirado en las aves (cisnes, palomas … y patos), el resultado “Mystic Lake” es espectacular, y está dedicado a esta feliz y orgullosa ceramista.
    Dear Resa, you have a magical hands, thank you … thank you very much.

  10. 🌟 Dear Resa…. This is such a spectacular gown… Love it… and every detail of it… Plus… great choice of color… (how neat is the fact that blue might turn to grey according to how light It reflected on it…
    A magical piece, my friend… Belén must be very proud, for sure!.
    Love & best wishes. Aquileana 😀

    1. ⭐ Dear Aquileana,
      She is a beauty & I do adore her.
      I also adore that you & Christy chose “Let Girls Learn” to be the charity that Mnemosyne ambassadors.
      I had no idea that the grey had this 2 tone quality until I began to take pics. In some of the shots, she is grey on the top half, and blue on the bottom half.
      Love & best wishes to you! xo 😀

      1. Trust me I’ve been there there is no time or sleep
        I use to walk around with a note book all the time
        To catch whatever I could
        Still do
        But she’s ten now
        Hang in there
        As always Sheldon

    1. TY, Inese! I love Belén’s girl ducks. One of them will be flying across the ocean to live in my home. Black Drake has already prepared a nest in my indoor plants for her. It is a very exciting time! 😀 😀

    1. TY, darling Ralph! I haven’t quite found the Art Gown for you, but it is in my radar. Obviously, it has to do with cats…. but with a twist. ❤
      I just got a thought… Flamenco & cats!!! This would be 2 art gowns away.
      Much love to you. xoxo #< {{hugs}}

      1. Good heavens ! A pretty little number for meee ! It’ll be marvellous with flamenco twisting cats turning a radar antenna. Can’t wait ! 🙂
        Love, love, love xoxo #< ❤

    1. I love these birds, too! Pigeons are very underrated… even hated.
      All nature is a perfect beauty. I know you know this because I see it when you blog.
      Take care!

  11. Mystic Lake is a stunning creation Resa. No matter the angle or light, the total speaks to your talent, skills, creativity showcasing the exquisite results. I’m fascinated by your eye for details and patience in working with finest of materials (and creating faux feathers – good one). This is one of my favorites of yours – so glad you mentioned in your note to me, I haven’t been online much these last couple of months and seeing your latest creation was a wonderful surprise.

    1. Yay! I’m happy it was a wonderful surprise! As you are an amazing artist, your comment makes me proud. I suppose this is my way of painting.
      i had to cut myself off from blogging so I could finish this gown. One can’t be creating gowns…or paintings sitting in a chair at a monitor.
      Looking forward to your next work! _Resa

    1. What? Another Christmas? What happened to the year since last year?
      Does Professional Moron have a product to make years go away?
      Well, about wearing Mystic Lake: are you 5’6′ – 5′ 9′?
      Are you about 120 lbs.?
      Size 4, 36 – 28 – 36?
      C cup?
      If you are, let’s talk, possibly!

      1. I’m 6 feet 1 apparently. Yeah, tall I know. I ate a lot of vegetables when I was younger. I think I’m about 400lbs although I’m not sure. We do things in stones in the UK. Cups? I drink out of my specially made one which says “I bloody love tea” (this is no lie), but they’ll no doubt have cups at the venue as well.

        1. 28.571 Stones! Well, well, ….well you’ll have to stop eating cake on toast to fit into this Art Gown.
          Oh what the heck. You’re too, tall for the gown, anyway. Eat cake on toast!

          1. I’m “too tall”? That’s tallist, woman! I have feelings too, you know, especially when I bang my head against low doorways because I’m so freaking tall. Garrgghh! Oh well, I’m going to drink some tea.

            1. Is it the tea that makes you shorter? Unless you loose about 5″ , the gown will just not look right.
              I am so not tallist, but the gown is. Cheers!

  12. There are moments
    created to bring
    sweet joy

    From a heart
    which each day
    will truly share

    A beautifully new
    creation and blessing
    to life

    Where another may
    embrace its alluring
    beauty and adore

    You bring smiles
    alive within ones

    With a wonderful
    radiant beauty which
    will easily hypnotize

    For when one embraces
    the new magic that is born
    They prize the fact they
    are alive…..

    You always make my heart smile dear sister! Hugs and blessings Resa

    1. Dear Wendell,
      Thank you so much!
      How wonderful that you share these life affirming words.
      To make a heart smile,
      Makes life worthwhile!
      I know you know, but I’m just saying!
      Blessings, love, hugs and a joyous spirit from me to you!

    1. Thank you, Lori!
      I have time only to do 2 or 3 Art Gowns a year, and I am so happy you still come to see them.
      There are a few followers who remain loyal, even though I am not posting, following & liking every day.
      You & I have our own way. Love to you!

    1. Ooo, I love your interpretation! I work very hard creating my girls, and I am so happy you got a creative thought when you saw Mystic Lake.
      I don’t want to sound ….like an ego head…. but if you ever want to use a picture for a poem, feel free. I admire your work, greatly!

  13. Pingback: Light as Air | Friendly Fairy Tales

    1. Thank you, dear Oloriel,
      I hope one day their charities will be a larger part of what I am able to do.
      Right now, they are unofficial ambassadors for charities. I want them to be official, one day.
      Much love & many hugs to you!

    1. Thank you, dear Charlie!
      This is why I will not let anyone buy an Art Gown. They are art, not clothes. They are my fabric poems. I know you understand.
      I am so happy you appreciate them. I only have time to make 2 or 3 a year, and I hope you will come by in a few months when my next piece is posted.
      Much love,

  14. Pingback: ☆☆ Happy New Year ☆☆ | Art Gowns

    1. Thank you, Karen!
      The feathers were a big deal detail in this Art Gown.
      I’m working on a new girl right now. Should be finished mid – February.
      Look forward to all your new work! 😀

  15. Fairy tale magical gown, Resa. Striking effect how the colours change with the light. The same a lake looks during the day and at night. Love it! And yes Belen and Marina both make beautiful art as well. ❤

    1. Thank you, Francina!
      It is wonderful how the Art Gowns become in actuality, what they are in fantasy!
      Will be starting a new one soon! I’m just considering the fabric. Love! ❤

  16. Carolee Croft

    I love it! A gown that magically changes colours. It’s cute and beautiful and majestic at the same time. I’m sure your feather friends loved it 😉

  17. Resa, I noticed this beauty in the sidebar of your blog just now. I was so bewitched by it that I had to click through and visit the post. It’s absolutely stunning! Since I thirst for color, naturally I like it best when the light brings out the blue. But the play of the lighting with the color makes it even more magical. Hugs on the wing!

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.