Thursday, August 16, 2018

Throw Back Thursday

via Instagram

I can’t believe it was already 4 weeks ago that I was packing up my car to head to the John C. Campbell Folk School to teach my ribbed basket class. I also can’t believe all the crap I had crammed into my car.

That little empty spot you see there in the corner? That was eventually filled with a bag of shoes. A friend traveled with me to take a cooking class at the Folk School and I joked that he might have to run along side holding onto the door handle. I was afraid that was going to be true as I carried more and more out to the car. There are a few things that I took with me that I either ended up not needing or shouldn't have even brought to begin with. Even so, I don't think those few things would have made all that much difference in the bigger picture.

2018 JoAnn Kelly Catsos Workshop

Thursday-Sunday, October 18-21, 2018
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Shaker Kittenhead Trio
1" diameter to 4" diameter
Shaped like the larger Shaker cathead baskets, these smaller versions are called kittenheads and feature the same pointed feet or cat ears. The three baskets in this set graduate in size from approximately one inch to four inches in diameter and nest inside each other. Featuring high arched handles, when tied together they create the perfect display.

Cracker Basket
12" long x 5" wide x 2 1/2" deep
This useful basket is a contemporary cousin to the Shaker Fancy Tray we made in our very first workshop with JoAnn. It has darker heartwood stakes and whiter sapwood weavers. The corner stakes are split to allow for the graceful curve of the corners. The cherry rims are single lashed.

Workshop fee for Shaker Kittenhead Trio and Cracker Basket

Class fees includes all materials, handouts and use of mold, weaving stand and tools.

Level: Intermediate/Advanced
These baskets aren't terribly difficult, but the tiny 1" kittenhead will take patience.

Instructor: JoAnn Kelly Catsos

Contact: Tony Stubblefield
if you would like to receive registration information

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Yet another of my studio shots

Appalachian-style ribbed egg basket
via Instagram

Yet another of my studio shots. This is one of my sample for the class I recently taught a the John C. Campbell Folk School. It is a 10" traditional Appalachian-style egg basket made using commercially available oak hoops and reed. The class dealt with the fundamentals of ribbed basket construction, with a focus on achieving a desirable shape.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Cottage Garden(er) Set

via Instagram

Another recent shot of a set of baskets I completed this spring. These are the Cottage Garden(er) series from Eric Taylor. They are woven of black ash with cherry rims, handle and runners.

I can never remember is Eric calls these Garden or Gardener baskets. I think I have used the terms interchangeably over the years and now I can't remember which is the correct name. Either way they are sweet baskets.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Triple Diamond Wine Totes

via Instagram

Finally unboxed the studio light kit I bought over a year ago. I need to play around some more with my camera and light position, but for the first try I am pretty happy. Here are my Triple Diamond Wine Totes, regular and junior version. Both made in classes with Eric Taylor.

The full-sized version was the first basket I think I wove with Eric. Like all of Eric's designs, it is woven of black ash staves and weavers, but this one features an oak base, handle and rim. The new(ish) Junior version features Eric's usual cherry base, handle and rim.

These two baskets give a good example of how the black ash ages over time. The full-size basket is starting to get a nice warm patina to the splint. At the time it was woven it was just as light as the smaller Junior version.

Monday, July 23, 2018

How do you sign your baskets?

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How do you sign your baskets or do you even sign them? I must admit I have not always been the best at doing it myself. The signing isn't as big of a deal as dating them. I have so many early baskets that at the time I just knew I would always know when they were made. Well, flash forward 25-30 years and I don't have a clue. I can usually come up with a date if I look through old photos or files I have from basket workshops or trips, but it would just be so much easier if I had just signed and dated them in the first place.

For my reed baskets I typically use a wood burner and scribe my initials and the dates somewhere around the handle or in the case of a ribbed basket, on the "ear". For Nantucket-style baskets I usually sign them on the base using a gold paint pen which works pretty well and shows up on cherry bases nicely. For my pounded ash baskets I usually sign them with a Micro Pen, either in black or ideally brown. Some of these baskets are miniatures or use really fine splint, so I need something fairly fine to be able to sign them. Typically these I sign and date on the bottom in the center of the woven base.

Do you have a special way you like to use?