West Moss-side Organic Farm and Centre nr Stirling Scotland

Calling all new Basket Makers


The weekend 21st/22nd March was the first of the Introduction to Traditional Willow Basket Making workshops for 2009. A great time was had by all and another six people are hooked!

Have you been on an Introduction course at West Moss-side or a 'Make a Basket in a Day' course and are you looking for a follow - up course or a refresher?

A new evening programme will be offered in April/May to help beginner basket makers. There will be four evenings - so come to all or as many as you can.

Inspired by Catherine Davies' enthusiasm for the material and the craft she lead the group through the techniques for each stage of the basket. Her attention to detail and her wide experience of the craft ensured that everyone came away with a really good grounding in the techniques. West Moss-side also has on display some of Catherine's beautiful pieces - something to aspire to!   The resulting baskets, which for most was their very first, were magnificent.  

During the weekend everybody learnt about the importance of  carefully choosing the material as we were using brown willow - more difficult to use as a beginner but far more satisfying and natural. A little colour was introduced to the basket with some West Moss-side Flanders Red willow. So each one was distinctive and unique.

West Moss-side has now hosted  seven Introduction to Traditional Willow Baskets workshop weekends over the past two years with Catherine and Kate giving a helping hand.  By the Sunday afternoon many of the new basket makers have asked for a follow - up programme.  I have run one set of 4 evening workshops which was much appreciated. From this last weekend, those of the six people who were close-ish to Thornhill expressed an interest. It's not just the practice it's also meeting up with fellow beginner basket makers!

So.... I am planning to run another follow-up series.  This is chance to use any extra base that you made on the workshop or to remind your self of the techniques... 

It will run over 4 evenings and allow you to work at your own pace whilst having a focus each week.    I would prepare the willow for you... whilst each evening we would go over the basic techniques that you have already learnt (and maybe forgotton) we would also take ideas a little further on - different weaves, introducing colour in the side weaving, different borders etc ...  

Tuesday 14th April  7.00 - 9.30            Base Refresher - planning your basket, choosing your material.

Tuesday 21st April  7.00 - 9.30            Stake up and Upsett Refresher - starting and getting the shape.

Tuesday 28th April  7.00 - 9.30            Side weaving Refresher - designing and making.

Thursday 7th May    7.00 - 9.30            Border Refresher - finishing your basket.

Come to all or as many as you can  10.00 per evening (with refreshments) . Minimum (and maximum!) numbers will apply so please book in with Kate as soon as possible. Email This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it is best.