When I was vending at the State Line Friends Retreat I was a weaving fool. I was demonstrating using my weaving stands so got four basket bodies woven. I also bought a waxed linen and cotton twining kit from Judy Wilson. I have always admired Judy's baskets and kits, but just never got around to picking one from the myriad of designs she has. I used to twine a lot way back when, but haven't in years so was excited to give it a try again.
I learned a number of things when working on this basket. For starters I twine "backwards" to the way Judy teaches. When I learned back in college from Maxine Kirmeyer (who unfortunately passed away this past September) she had us to twist counter clockwise or the way you would turn a screw to tighten it. I realized I wasn't twining the way Judy did when my spirals were going in the opposite direction. But, it didn't really matter all that much other than I probably wasn't ending the way she would have liked for me to. The other thing I learned is that I twine VERY TIGHTLY! My basket is about 2/3rds the size of the sample basket. Next time I will know, but once you start down that road there is no turning back unless you want a crazy hour-glass shaped basket. All in all I was happy with the way the basket turned out and it is currently displayed on my mantle.
Cottage Cruet and Cottage Mail
The other two baskets that I finished from the retreat were two kits from Eric Taylor. These baskets are woven of hand pounded black ash with cherry handles and rims. Eric's baskets are a hybrid between Nantucket and Shaker baskets giving them a contemporary feel. These are both duplicate baskets for me so I will have to decide if I will sell them or save them for gifts.
So, three baskets completed on my own in a months time is really great. Of course I still have the other two Nantucket basket bodies I wove at convention to complete plus I have the three baskets from last years retreat to finish! Too many baskets and not enough time. I guess it could be worse...