Category Archives: Willow

Catching the Memories and Passing on the Skills

Withy Arts’ new project, Catching the Memories and Passing on the Skills, funded by Heritage Lottery Fund, has just started. One of the aims of this year long project is to teach participants the skills of basket making which were so important to Great Yarmouth’s past. The fishing industry used baskets in great quantities until plastic took over and for this reason, Great Yarmouth was a place of skilled craftsmanship.

For the first few weeks participants have been learning the basics of weaving in both willow and cane and in the process, made some beautiful objects, pictured below.

tension plates
Tension plates featuring the rosebud knot
making
Making a tension plate
trays
Lovely trays
danish bottom basket
Baskets with a Danish bottom

And finally, cane work…

cane baskets
Cane baskets
cane flowers
A garden of flowers

What a great day…

The public involvement day was a roaring success. The weather was good so there were lots of people in the park enjoying the sunshine. Many people came to see the demonstrations and find out more about what the volunteers have been up to and learn about willow.

Several of our younger visitors helped with the scribble weave sculptures.

pi1

pi3

or made willow stars

pi2

The toilet block hurdle and the garden enclosure were both finished.

The new hurdle for the bin enclosure was started and volunteers demonstrated willow fish making and how to make the covers

We even had a canine visitor who was more interested in the water in the bucket than the willow itself to be honest.

pi4

Proud volunteers and Withy Arts workers at the end of a delightful project.

group

Flowers, fish and finishing things

This was the last of our practical sessions weaving together. All the skills have been passed on and the volunteers are ready to weave without us.

Everyone made willow fish at home and a beautiful shoal came back as diverse as their creators.

Stuart and Eunice installed their covers…

Hisnhers covers

Those who hadn’t had the chance to learn the flower and the tension plate did some catching up…

 

and preparations continued for the Public Involvement Day; all spare hands made progress with the spheres so that they are ready for people to add their scribble weave to…

Pete

Pete put a window in his sphere.

And Graeme tried it on for size!

Graeme spheres

 

Scribble Weaving

This week we made armatures for willow spheres which we then started to fill in with ‘scribble weaving’ which as the name suggests is a technique where the willow withy is woven in a random fashion to create an interesting effect.

scribble

Everyone made a small sphere. We will be using this activity at the Public Involvement Day, Saturday 12th May 2018 at Whitlingham Country Park where members of the public will be encouraged to contribute to what will become a willow sculpture in the park.

 

In the afternoon everyone carried on with their personal projects. Eunice and Stuart finished their covers.

Laura made a flower

flower

Bridget and Sarah carried on with the hurdle.

hurdle

And we even managed to sort some of the willow!

sorting

New work

This week’s session after the Easter break saw the volunteers at Whitlingham Country Park using their newly acquired skills to weave more of the items they have already made.

Susan working on a garden hurdle for the car park flower bed and with the finished product.

Laura garden hoops

Laura finishing off the hoops on her hurdle.

Eunice and Stuart

Eunice and Stuart working on covers, using the gorgeously coloured Repps Meadow willow.

David and Sarah

David and Sarah with this hurdle. It’s going to be used to hide the bins and really too lovely for that job!

Here’s detail from the hurdle.

detail of hurdle