I can still remember the day when my curiosity about basketmaking began; a demonstrator at The Eden Project in Cornwall was showing visitors how to weave some blades of grass into the beginnings of a simple basket. How intriguing! . . . to be able to create something so useful out of something so commonplace . . . ?
When, a few weeks later, I saw an advertisement for willow basketmaking classes I simply had to enrol! From that moment, I was hooked. The possibilities for creativity out of, essentially, a pile of sticks, were endless and I just had to learn the techniques.
I joined the Basketmakers’ Association, which opened my eyes to the incredible diversity within basketry, both traditional and contemporary, and to the many makers in this country and overseas. That was back in 2002 and, since then, I have deepened my knowledge through attending as many workshops and courses by as many different basketmakers as I could find or afford! The City Lit College in Covent Garden, West Dean College near Chichester, and Westhope Craft College in Shropshire have all provided me with inspirational teachers and teaching. In 2016/17 I completed the City & Guilds course in Basketry at Westhope.
Gaining this qualification gave me the confidence to share my passion with others through teaching and I now run a range of workshops close to my home in Hampshire, as well as adult education classes in Winchester. I hope I can encourage you to join me on one of my workshops so that you too can experience the pleasures of this ancient and sustainable craft. Or if you have someone special in your life who would appreciate attending a workshop, I offer gift vouchers; just drop me a line.
I display and sell my baskets at a handful of garden shows and Christmas fairs around my home area in Hampshire, including past participation in the annual Hampshire Open Studios event.
I run workshops, teaching groups of up to six, at The Coffee Room in Ropley, Alresford, Hampshire SO24 0DS. Full details of all workshops are on my website. I also run private tuition for small groups or individuals, by arrangement. I can give talks and demonstrations.
If you have any questions, or just want to chat about baskets, do get in touch.