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Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Basket Weaving

Last autumn I took a basket making course, every sunday over 5 weeks. It's something I've always wanted to try, it was a great distraction from everyday life and it was very satisfying to finish the course with something I had made in my hands. Come to think of it, that's what started me on the whole cushion making thing: I hadn't done anything like it for a long time and I wanted more!

Where I live, in Central Italy, we are still not far removed from the times when craft was a matter of practical life, as opposed to a passtime. Gianni, our teacher, makes baskets and sells them at local markets, people use them bacause they are still the most practical thing: they're light and let air circulate, protecting your fruit or mushrooms or whatever is inside.

Gianni told a story about a time when he was walking along a river bed with his father. They came accross a tomato plant growing wild, full of ripe tomatoes. They had nothing to put them in so his father promptly got to work making a basket.

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