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Quarff Hall, 10am-5pm, Saturday 2 & Sunday 3 April.

A two day course for adult beginners and basket makers in coiling and looping, exploring the creative potential of ancient basket making techniques with recycled and natural materials from your own environment.

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Almost anything can be used to make baskets but, in order to create something that works in terms of function or visual impact, it is necessary to first explore the potential of the material and draw inspiration from its qualities. In this workshop students will learn how to approach this research and how to use the materials they have in their immediate environment as the inspiration for their work. Bring a packed lunch, simple tools and some materials that are freely available in your home and everyday surroundings. Tea and coffee are provided.

Your check list of free materials for coiled and looped basket making:

Working with the materials that are available in your immediate environment is traditional; it is how basket makers have always worked. It is also sustainable and tells a story of the maker and the way the maker has chosen to live, that is the key to making unique work.

Students need to bring a selection of found or recycled materials that are readily available to them in their home environment. It is better not to pre-judge whether or not the materials are useable and it is not necessary to get everything on this lest - these are just a few examples of things that are possible.

The materials are used for two different purposes: some are the core material and some the stitching or tying material.

plastic bags, corrugated cardboard, papers, telephone or electric cable or wire, twigs/stems, strapping tape, rope and string, baler twine, long grasses/reeds/leaves, fabric off cuts, ribbons, tapes, wool, cotton yarn, video/audio cassette tapes, net bags from oranges/lemons, etc, inner tubes, stockings/tights/old t shirts..... and anything else students think might work, or that they like, or have lots of.

To comply with Health and Safety regulations, please make sure all found and recycled materials are cleaned and prepared for use, for example beach finds should be checked for oils and potentially infectious materials, and food cartons should be washed out.

A 2 day workshop requires about 2 carrier bags full of materials. It is generally better to have lots of a few types of materials rather than just one piece of each.


A large eyed needle, a pair of all purpose scissors and a craft knife

Students should also bring any additional tools that they think might be necessary in order to use the materials they have gathered, for example secateurs or wire cutters.

Bonhoga Guided Tour

Lois is leading a guided tour of her exhibition "urban baskets: tradition recycled" at Bonhoga Gallery on Tuesday 29 March.

And for bairns - Saturday 23 April, 10.30am-12.30pm at Bonhoga Gallery

"Have A Go At Basketmaking" - a short and simple, free drop-in activity led by Shetland Arts staff for bairns under 8 years visiting the exhibition. No booking required.


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