This week I’ve been to both the Norfolk wildlife trust in Cley and the Suffolk wildlife trust in Redgrave and Lopham Fen to teach. The weather has been absolutely terrible at times but it hasn’t dampened people’s enthusiasm for learning new things. Well done everyone.
Just preparing some willow for the weekend. I’m teaching adults Christmas decorations in Cley on Friday for the Norfolk wildlife trust. On Saturday the centre is running a class for children to make trees and stars. I’m easily distracted and decided to make this Christmas tree feeder. Going to get on with my work now…
This weeks classes. Lovely women in all the groups. On Wednesday I had a really relaxing morning with three ladies at the simply handmade studio in Sudbury. Today the Norfolk Small holders Training group. These folks are very hands on and make me smile when they strike up conversations about their goats and sheep or spinning wool. Thank you to everyone for making me so welcome.
I’ve taught three workshops this week to kick off the Christmas making season. Friends and family on Monday , Fransham WI on Thursday and a group at Redgrave and Lopham Fen today. It’s such a privilege to be a part of these shared experiences, to join in the chatter and the jokes.
Making decorations really is fun and relaxing. Well, I think making generally is very therapeutic! Once you’re in the flow and your mind focused on the job at hand you really do forget about everything else.
I am working on a hedgehog house design to run as a course next year. I just need to make sure the dimensions are right for the entrance and living space.
I’m quite pleased with how it’s turned out. It’s really sturdy and will make a cosy home once stuffed with some leaves.
It all started with a lovely lady asking me to repair her family’s crib. It’s made of cane and is around 100 years old. I love repairing baskets, it just feels right. Looking after things, not throwing them away is something we should all be doing as much as possible.
It was a really satisfying job and I’ll be happy to deliver it back to its owner next week just in time for its new occupant due imminently.
Anyway I decided to make a toy crib for up coming open studios and craft fair. One led to two and today I made a third. It’s easy to get carried away. I now need to make a few more mattresses, pillows and blankets and they’ll be all ready.
Such a gorgeous day again today at the Butterfly Art Studio. The weather was beautiful and the weavers keen. All the structural set up for a frame basket happens at the start of the day. I think it can seem a bit overwhelming for a beginner.
These guys were fab, their perseverance really paid off as they all achieved lovely shaped baskets. They were able to spend the afternoon peacefully weaving with a mixture of willow and rush.
Just over a week ago I spent a day with my Basketry mates, the Basketry Collective, learning the Burkina Plait from Nadine Anderson.
We started with paper string to practice the twists involved that hold it all together and then very quickly moved on to rush. The rush was such a beautiful green harvested this year by Nadine, it was a real treat to be using such lovely material.
Although I’ve done a lot of plaiting I was completely new to this and thoroughly enjoyed getting to grips with the technique. That is one of the lovely things about Basketry, there is always something new to learn.
I finished the bag off with a few rush flowers and a leather strap. There is definitely room for improvement and I hope to keep practising over the coming weeks.
A basket woven with hops to celebrate harvest. Autumn is one of my favourite seasons, the other being Spring!
These hops grow wild in my garden along the hedge but next weekend you have the opportunity to come and help with the hop picking at Star Wing Brewery.
This is the second year the brewery is running this event. I’m really looking forward to it. Last year there was a real sense of people coming together, it was great fun.
It starts at 2pm, The Ludlum Pikes are playing from 4.30pm followed by a hog roast at 6pm. Then Mick the Baker and his band are playing from around 8pm. As well as all of that Old Empire Motorcycles will have some bikes out for folk to look at.
Hope to see you there!