Weekend with Anne Mette …

Just spent a fabulous weekend with members of my group, the Basketry Collective. We wove like mad for three days under the tutelage of Anne Mette Hjornholm.

Anne Mette is a Danish basket maker you can see more of her work at her website

http://www.hjornholm.dk

We spent the first two days working on Catalan bases and an Irish twist weave. A lovely combination! On the third day a few of us made frame baskets and others made more Catalan baskets. It was good to have a concentrated time with friends doing the thing we love!

Hens working hard…

Another fab morning at The Butterfly Art and Crafts studio. This lovely group of ladies were were celebrating Cat’s upcoming nuptials. They made lots of willow and rush hearts to decorate the marquee on the big day in three weeks.

Brian and Julie from the studio put on an amazing spread for them afterwards. What a lovely way to spend and morning.

So very very hot…

A really chilled morning this morning with this lovely group of teachers in Bury St Edmunds. It’s been so blisteringly hot I was very grateful for a cool class room for this workshop.

We were making fat ball feeders from willow. Taking it step by step and breaking it down into bite sized chunks makes it all so achievable for folk who haven’t used willow before.

Well done to you all, have a wonderful summer!

Feeling honoured!

I had a wonderful evening yesterday. Being asked to become a Yeoman Member is the Worshipful Company of Basketmakers is very exciting. Fabulous Sue Kirk (left) and brilliant Sally Roach (right) were also sworn in.

The Worshipful Company of Basketmakers was formally constituted in 1569 to help support the trade. Today they continue to support Basketmakers, London charities and the historic traditions of the City of London.

Chilled afternoon…

Whilst many people were glued to their tv’s watching England beat Sweden this afternoon this lovely group of ladies were making willow fat ball feeders.

They were very chilled and did a fabulous job. Redgrave and Lopham Fen is the most beautiful setting for any class. If you need to day dream out of the window for 5 minutes it has the best views!

Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park fair…

A scorcher of a day this year at the Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park fair. But it didn’t deter people. My friends and I were busy throughout the day showing children and adults how to do some simple weaving around pre made willow fish and leaf frames.

The group I belong to, the Basketry Collective, have been going to the fair for about 6 years. The response by the local community is always overwhelming. I am reminded time and again that we all have a basic need to create and many people don’t get the opportunity. The restorative value in losing yourself in an activity can’t be underestimated.

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Friends…

I needed to construct a little gate and fence panel across my patio. A friend gave me some hazel, a generous couple I taught gave me a ton of willow, a friend gave me a log to create a ‘foot’ for the fence panel, another friend didn’t mind me stopping and asking advice whilst he was chilling at the Cross Keys after work. In fact he offered to cut the hole for me despite being busy himself . A neighbour lent me the chisels I needed and I had a lovely time on Friday working on this. For me this is the essence of why I love my community, it’s full of wonderful people.