Rush handbag…

So another rush handbag today. I am still refining the design to make it quick and easy to teach in a day. I really enjoyed making this for two main reasons. Number one I didn’t have a single snapper, number two I just love making those rope handles. 😊

Rush bag sample…

Another rush bag sample. For the handle I used the 5 strand plait I made last week. This was woven into the basket. It is really sturdy and secure but could have done with flattening a bit under a roller before use as it felt quite chunky to weave around compared to the stakes either side.

A bag for my boy…

I have been promising my youngest son that I will make a bag for his inhalers for about a year. The paper prescription bag they came in has worn so thin there are holes developing so I decided it was time to fulfil my promise.

This little bag is plaited from rush. It is started with a check weave and then folded in half diagonally. The sides are plaited one row at a time. It really helps to make sure the check weave is as square as possible to begin with . When the sides reached the required height I did a level folded border and plaited a 3 strand handle secured with string bindings. Fingers crossed he likes it!

Rush mats…

Another great afternoon at the Butterfly Art and Craft studio in Essex. This group made fabulous rush mats. This is a great beginners workshop to get used the material and how it behaves.

We started with a check weave in the centre and secured this with a pairing weave. After six rows of pairing we finished with a very simple border. The mats need to be dried before trimming.

Rush day…

Playing with rush this week. Making fresh samples for the class I’m teaching tomorrow at the Butterfly studio in Essex @artdays1

I’ve also started another tote bag by making a spliced 5 strand plait for the handle that will get woven into the base and sides of the basket. Watch this space!

Leftovers…

Using up leftovers from last weeks classes and my chewed up harvest. I made another shallow basket starting with a 6×6 slath. This produced 24 base sticks for me to stake up singularly, finishing with a 5 rod border after a few rows of waling.

Frame baskets…

Just finished some frame baskets in a mixture of different coloured willow and some seagrass.

Two willow hoops are attached together with a knot, in this case a god’s eye. The weaving is built up over a series of ribs using randing and packing from each side until you meet in the middle.

Shallow baskets…

I have been playing around with different shallow baskets. The top design has a Catalan base, the middle picture is an Irish skib and the bottom picture is a standard stake and strand basket with a plaited border.

I love the variety in style and colour that you can achieve with relatively small changes to technique and willow choices.