Saturday, July 21, 2012


A few weeks ago I started thinking about weaving baskets.  It's something I fell in love with many years ago when Erika was very little and my mom bought me a kit for a small, plaited basket for my birthday.  I was hooked!  Although I did such a poor job of weaving that first basket that it has lived its entire life hidden in a cupboard holding napkin rings, I'd never dream of throwing it out!  It was the first basket I ever wove and, now all these years later and with my mom gone nearly ten of those years, that basket is a treasured -- if misshapen -- part of my life.

For some time back then, I was very "into" basket weaving.  I helped found The Misti Washington Gourd and Basket Guild and was it's first Secretary.  My friends and family received baskets on many gift-giving occasions and I even sold some baskets for resale in a lovely little country-style store, The Country Loft .  

But, at some point about 10-12 years ago, I gave up basket weaving.  I'm not sure why I gave it up,  but I've always been sort of a serial monogamist when it comes to crafts -- I'll learn something new and then when the newness wears off, I lose interest and move on, jumping into the next thing with both feet. Maybe the messiness of the craft is what got to me.  The materials -- usually reed in my case -- need to be soaked in water until they will submit to becoming a basket.  And, a craft that involves water isn't the easiest thing to do while sitting in front of the TV at the end of a long work day!

For whatever reason I gave up basket weaving, there I was a few weeks ago thinking about picking it back up again!  I gave in and ordered some supplies from V.I. Reed & Cane, Inc.  and while I waited anxiously for them to arrive, I dug out my basket weaving books and paged through them, remembering.

The materials arrived, and sat on my worktable for several more days.
Then, this morning I cleared the work table, filled a large bowl with water, and feeling a little nervous, began creating my first basket in ten years.
It turns out that basket weaving is a lot like riding a bicycle -- you don't forget.  You might be a little wobbly at first (this is a VERY simple basket and it's far from prefect) but your body remembers what to do even if your memory is a little fuzzy at first.
The last time I wove baskets in this room, I'd never dreamed of Darby and Pumpkin.  But, now I have these dog-girls of mine to keep me company while I get re-acquainted with this old craft-love of mine.

Returning is good.


Lois said...

Just...charming, in every way. I so know that enthusiasm that comes with a new thing, almost manic in my case, and then.....but it is the neatest thing when years later you return to it. I am very impressed !! :-)

Boo's Mom said...

Thanks, Lois. Almost manic is a good description.

scotsmad said...

We used to chew up baskets! Looks like a great basket for treats. Maybe the girls are thinking the same thing.

XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy