Forms of artistry

Café displaying unique works of foliage, illustrations

A display of Stacy Collins’ artistry with plants, ferns and foliage has become a rite of spring at A Perfect Day Cafe in downtown North Vernon. This year, however, her work will have company.

The cafe also will display of the illustrations of Bonnie Everett-Hawks.

“People have come to expect Stacy’s planters, terrariums. fairy gardens and other arrangements. Every year, by March I have people asking when Stacy will be bringing her things in,” A Perfect Day Cafe owner Judith Ross said. “Her arrangements will be displayed on the tables and shelves, and Bonnie’s work will hang on the walls throughout the whole month.”

Ross also is the director of Jennings County Visitors and Recreation Commission, and routinely uses the cafe’s space to highlight a variety of local artists.

Everett-Hawks began her career as a professional illustrator in 1975 after graduating with honors from the Art Institute of Dallas. Her illustrations appear in more than 50 children’s books, and she has written and illustrated two children’s books and is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

“I feel like I have illustrated books for my whole life and it has been an important part of my life, but I also enjoy doing portraits and my photography,” Everett-Hawks said.

Samples of the broad array of Everett-Hawks’ work will be on display and available for purchase at A Perfect Day Cafe throughout April.

Everett-Hawks grew up in California, but frequently returned to her family’s farm, located between Madison and Vernon. After marrying a pastor, Stephen (Gil) Hawks, she lived in Texas when the family farm was sold.

“I always felt like Indiana was my real home. When the old farm came back-up for sale, my husband and I bought it and returned to live here permanently 13 years ago,” Everett-Hawks said.

Collins has also spent most of her life perfecting her art using plants, flowers and foliage to create unusual displays.

“I’ve only had my greenhouse (Collins Cove Greenhouse, in North Vernon) for 20 years, but I think it feels like forever that I have used plants to make art,” Collins said.

“I like to create unusual things using recycled objects to make planters filled with unusual plants and unique touches. This year there will be a lot of ferns and big very feathery plants. There will be displays featuring some unusual things like calathea, succulents, Queen of Hearts, Night Sky and foliage like elephant ears and snail plants,” Collins added.

During the first two weeks of April, Collins’ displays will feature Easter themes, both religious or playful, she said.

“We will also have several planters arranged with plants that naturally attract hummingbirds and butterflies,” Collins added. “I am really looking forward to seeing the first humming bird because that means the cold snaps are all over and it is really spring.”

Collins’ art displays may be purchased throughout April.

The public can view the displays without having to make a purchase in the restaurant, but the displays are only available during the cafe’s normal business hours.

If you go

What: Displays of foliage by Stacy Collins, illustrations by Bonnie Everett Hawks.

When: Throughout April, during normal business hours 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

Where: A Perfect Day Cafe, 221 E. Walnut St., North Vernon.

For more information: 812-346-1100