March 2021 roundup

The big news this month is…drumroll…I have finished the Tetrapak dog!

tetrapak dog 4tetrapak dog 5

Any suggestions of what to call him or her? 🙂

I also tried a variation on a theme, making a circular coiled pot with a lid based on my previous tortoise vessels. Because the peaks resemble limpet shells, I’ve called this a limpet pot.

limpet pot 1limpet pot 2limpet pot 3

Another construction I’ve been involved in was a bike shed in the front garden. This was not particularly creative – I just mention it because it took a lot of time and effort this month! The very heavy shed arrived in bits and had to be pieced together on a concrete base that we had previously laid.

Much huffing, puffing, and swearing ensued, not to mention a couple of broken drill bits. I also ended up falling into wet concrete at one point – and the local wildlife were determined to leave their marks too!

But now the shed is up, and I am able to get into the house without squeezing past a couple of bikes and associated paraphernalia. We just need to plant a fast-growing shrub to cover up the unattractive exterior.

bike shed

With restrictions on lockdown slowly lifting, our two-year basketry course at City Lit is due to resume in mid-April, more than a year since it stopped. I’m really looking forward to being back in the classroom, especially now that I’ve had my first coronavirus vaccination.

We are going to be starting on twining, so I thought I might try to get ahead a bit and started on a new experiment. This is very much a Work In Progress! 😉

twined wip

Hopefully this will be more presentable next month.

In the meantime, I wish you all a happy Easter.

Coiling from Sri Lanka and Senegal

My attempts at making coiled baskets last year weren’t entirely successful – more practice needed! But over the summer I came across a couple of different examples of coiling, which I thought I’d share.

In Sri Lanka I bought some very simple mats made from coiled and dyed strips of newspaper, presumably held together with glue. There were also some lovely bowls made using the same materials, but I thought these might not survive the flight back.

And in Brixton, a new shop – whose name I can’t remember – has just opened up in oh-so-trendy Brixton Village, selling items from West Africa, India and Latin America. They include some amazing coiled pots, made from bundles of grass held together with recycled plastic straps. Interestingly, they appear not to use the “double wrap” to hold the coils together, but to pass the plastic strap through a few of the strands of glass in the previous coil instead.