From withy to basket
Willow baskets provide the ideal alternative to the ubiquitous plastic container and can be made into almost any receptacle: cradles and coffins, log and laundry baskets, shopping and storage containers...willow is such a versatile and durable material whilst also being completely biodegradable. This shift towards the sustainable container has led to a resurgence of an ancient craft which uses traditional techniques to transform material harvested from the land into items that are useful and beautiful.
'The marvel of a basket is in its transformation, its journey from wholeness as a living plant to fragmented strands and back to wholeness again as a basket. A basket knows the dual power of destruction and creation that shape the world'
from Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer
I grow most of the willow I use locally. The varieties have been planted specifically for basketmaking, and provide different colours and textures.
The process of weaving requires focus and attention, and keeps an ancient craft alive, adapting the techniques to make baskets relevant for everyday that are beautiful and useful.
Willow basketmaking uses natural materials, sourced from the land, to make baskets that are strong and durable. At the end of the basket's life, it will decompose, leaving no trace to pollute the planet.