Using natural willow and traditional basketry techniques, on this one-day workshop you will create one or more garden wigwams to be used either in pots or directly in the ground for training climbing plants such as beans, clematis and sweet peas. They add height to the garden and can be a thing of beauty in themselves!
Who is the course for? This workshop is suitable for all; no experience of willow weaving is required.
What are the aims of the course? The aim of this course is for students to experience the joys of weaving with natural willow, learn a range of traditional, basketry techniques, and to take home a completed item(s) made by themselves.
What does the course involve? A certain amount of manual strength and dexterity is required when working with willow; however, the projects covered in this workshop have been selected for their relative simplicity and suitability for beginners.
Throughout the workshop, students may occasionally use specialist basketry tools, most of which are either sharp or pointed, so a sensible and common sense approach to safety is essential.
Please Note: As with all craftwork, basketry skills take some time to acquire and students should not be upset if they do not achieve perfection first time around!
On this workshop you will learn how to weave around upright willow stakes to create a sturdy and decorative wigwam for the garden. During the day you should be able to complete more than one wigwam, perhaps of differing sizes.
Please be aware that the finished wigwams will be large and possibly difficult to transport! Ensure your car can accommodate a 6-7’ long wigwam with a 24” diameter (or make to size accordingly!)
What topics will I be covering?
- Understanding types of willow used in basket making;
- Preparation of willow;
- How to manipulate willow;
- Use of basket makers’ tools;
- Basic weaving techniques
Do I need any previous knowledge or entry qualifications? No previous knowledge of basketry or experience of weaving with willow is required for this workshop. Working with willow requires some manual dexterity as you will be working with your hands, wrists and fingers to weave the willow.
What do I need to prepare for the course? No preparation is required.
How much time do I need to spend on home study? There is no home study.
Material costs for willow required for the classroom activities have been included in the course fee. It may be possible to purchase additional willow from the tutor to take home with you. Please discuss this with the tutor. Any costs for additional willow will be payable to the tutor on the day. The tutor provides all specialist tools required for the workshop, for use in the classroom.
NB: Please wear practical clothing and bring a work apron – damp willow can be a bit dirty.
For longer or weekend workshops please bring along a packed lunch/refreshments. A 30 minute break will be allocated. Basic tea and coffee and milk is provided
Where could the course lead? This course could lead to further willow-weaving workshops. The skills learned in this workshop will give students confidence to try any of the other basketry workshops.