Autumn harvests isn’t all about fruit & nuts, Its the time of year when i go a little mad for weaving sticks too. If i was sensible and dried and soaked willow like you are supposed to willow weaving would be all year around. But when the leaves start falling, trees start showing their branches and it is time to cut back the summers growth in the garden i just can’t resist turning all those pruned sticks into something useful, like baskets. I needed a biggish, rectangular basket for when i’m carrying files and paperwork that needs to sit flat, so i used three types of willow i have growing in the garden, some honeysuckle, apple and birch prunings. None of them were really good materials. The willow was all fine working flat, but prone to snap when trying to bend, so i ended up with a nasty border with no particular pattern. Hopefully by next year I’ll get some more suitable willows growing, and have been able to invest in some tools, i often find myself struggling for lack of a nice big basket makers bodkin and some small sharp cutters, i end up using wire cutters instead.
so next week I’ll be working on something much bigger! We have a long established Willow Dome at the Smithy Community Hub. The deer roam freely on site and love to chew the bottom branches of the dome, so it isn’t as lush and healthy as it should be, So I am aiming to protect the lower walls by building some tight hurdles, behind which some live willow may be able to grow better. I’m going to do this as a teaching session to give folks a chance to do some hands on weaving and being creative outdoors. Hopefully the weather will hold !
meanwhile I had some drawing time, so wove a tree and waterfall, then coloured it in digitally. My elbow tendonitous is still making it difficult for me to do gripping tasks like holding a pen, so it felt really good to get anything done after such a long time.