leaping in

A mucker through and through, that’s me.  Like a magnet, new experiences in art pull me in all the time . . . I see something different and think to myself, “I could do that!”   Yesterday I signed up for Kawai Ruapapa-Raranga: thie year I am learning how to prepare and weave flax/harakeke!

After a Sunday afternoon with the kaiako/teacher in her studio trying to make up for a missed weekend, I am sold!  In the early evening I went and harvested some harakeke/flax, pulled it into strips and then wondered which big saucepan I could sacrifice to boil it . . . I think I need to visit a charity shop and find something.  And I need some new blades for my knife and rubber bands to tie the strips into bundles, maybe some dye but I like a natural look.  That’s it . . . minimum expenditure, the materials grow wild on my walk to the beach or along the roadsides!

Waitohu Stream

Harakeke flowering on the way to the Waitohu Stream

So busy was I that it never occurred to me to take photos!    But just watch this space . . . there will be some after every weekend!

Oh dear . . . I save the above as a draft instead of posting it so here are images of my very first attempts at weaving kete/baskets.

IMG_2851 IMG_2854 IMG_2855The next noho (a long weekend where you can sleep over) is early May and that’s when I learn how to attach feathers among other things.  Yahoo!

Guess who will be looking for a freshly run over pukeko on the side of the road . . . does that sound ghoulish?  If you saw the sheen of the plumage I’m sure you’d understand.I hope this image doesn’t have a copyright . . . I got it from google images.

pukeko

The pukeko or swamp hen.

My next adventure?  A week of diving into a workshop with the wonderful Jill Berry! 

10 thoughts on “leaping in

  1. Your baskets are wonderful… and to think… all the materials are just outside your door! I made a few reed and dogwood twig baskets after a class I took, maybe 20 years ago, at our local arts league. I still love them and will always treasure the experience of molding natural elements into a useful yet beautiful object with my own hands.
    Keep it up Wendy… we muckers have all the fun!

  2. Wow you are industrious, I love the baskets…you are definitely a mucker Wendy. HappY Easter Holidays to you – Ron and I are riding the Otago Rail cycle trail – excited much bought thermals to protect from the likely cooler temps. Had first training session today – rode to Ashurst and back got caught in the rain so an appropriate training session. Keep up with your continued mastery of the arts you Mucker upper you xox

  3. Wendy, your basket is beautiful. I look forward to seeing more. Enjoy your time with Jill … she is a delightful instructor and person!

  4. Beautiful baskets Wendy! I just spent three delightful months in Colleen’s gracious home on the the tidal marsh in South Carolina – drooling over the sweet grass baskets that the local Gullah ladies make – so beautiful…. I took a workshop last summer and made a little reed basket, but it is pretty pitiful. I am having much more luck with my watercolors and am going for “plain air” painting in the south of France for ten days in May with my wonderful instructor from Stowe.

    • Baskets and off-loom weaving have always attracted me.

      3 months at Colleen’s . . . how wonderful! I’ve decided to come over in the middle of 2015 . . . if work won’t give me leave . . .well . . .

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