What an unexpected delight it was experience my first weaving circle today and learn how to weave a basket from an environmental weed - Cat’s Claw. I am hooked! I can’t wait to go down to the river to find more weeds to make another, to experiment and refine my technique. The kids are clamouring for me to show them how too.
|My 'rough basket' - first ever go at basket-weaving. This too about an hour. Just a bit of tidying left to do.|
I attended an Environmental STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) workshop today at Eumundi State School with Jon Gemmel and Janet Millington (the work they both do is amazing!). We explored the productive permaculture food forest, heard about great ideas for integrating STEAM learning in the garden, and were updated on the global outdoor classroom movement.
In the hands-on part of the day - I chose to participate in the Ancient STEAM stream. We explored indigenous/first Australian ways to solve problems and design tools to help access abundance. The school had real tools on loan from a local Museum. We had the chance to pick up and feel the fine craftwork of a boomerang, a digging stick, a grinding stone, a fire stick, a sharpened stone and a range of woven baskets.
With a few tips, Emma Heffernan had a group of us making baskets with aplomb. What surprised me was not how great it felt to be weaving (it did), but how once our hands got the rhythm we started to open up to each other - to talk, share, laugh and learn with a group of people we'd just met.
|Emma showing us different methods of simple basket weaving.|
The power of the weaving circle I now realise is as much about making and doing and exchanging weaving strategies, as it is about slowing down, connecting with others, sharing experiences and ideas, building community, opening up and finding support, and laughing together. It was so much fun!
|Two woven circles tied together with vine. Add an odd number of spines. Weave back and forth, pulling it closer.|
|My kids have claimed this as the egg basket. I can't wait to show them how to do it. |
Labels: craft, eco-art, education, permaculture