Sunday, May 2, 2010

Planting Ideas

My introduction to willow came in (I think) 1994 during a 5-day rib-style basketry workshop at Sievers School of Fiber Arts. I had been making baskets in high school, but it took me almost 20 years to learn I could weave with materials I can gather or grow myself.

It was on a trip to Iowa when I visited the Broom & Basket Shop at Amana that I first learned about Sievers. At Sievers, my instructor was a woman from Iowa named Jo Campbell-Amsler. Through Jo, I later met Joanna Schanz, the owner of the Broom & Basket Shop. Notice how things come full circle.

Jo and Joanna introduced me to a whole community of people who work with willow. It's a generous, knowledgeable, interesting, fun community.

For years, we've been sending each other links to interesting sites, exhibitions, images and the like. Now that we're no longer limited by dial-up internet access (a common problem for people in rural areas), we'd like to start sharing those bits and pieces with the larger community.

We'd love to have you contribute, as well. If you have willow tips to share, workshop or exhibition notices, find an interesting link, or would like to write a guest post, please email donnastitches[at]gmail[dot]com. Let's plant some ideas for the next generation.

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