Thursday, March 08, 2007

It's in the Weave

The subject of basketweaving came up very recently; a pursuit that interests me. I have a feeling it's not easy.
As you know, Myrtle Rae has been weaving for a while, with some success. But she's more competent than most.
It's a fine fine art. I love them. If I have to have a thing, let it be a basket. Beautiful to behold, and hold they do. Trash and treasures. An anti-housekeeper's dream.

28 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just beautiful!

Astrid

8/3/07 5:52 AM  
Blogger jm said...

I'm a complete basketlover, astrid. Another universal craft.

8/3/07 1:25 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I've always loved the weaving process. It's everywhere, and I associate it with Virgo, and meditation in a chaotic environment. The hands in rhythm are an antidote to the mass confusion.

Everyone in the world does a lot of it. I wonder how the Industrial Revolution really affected things, when machines took over. The impulse to weave and knit together must be going somewhere.

8/3/07 2:19 PM  
Blogger Neith said...

I don't suppose it would come as a great surprise that I've played around with basket weaving . . . :-)

As a matter of fact, I do have a "past" life memory of weaving baskets as a native American. I did gather white yucca & bear grass in Arizona - offering blood sacrifice in the process - and made a very small basket in the traditional Papago coil basket style. Deepened my already great respect for all basket makers . . . :-)

8/3/07 2:35 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I don't suppose it would come as a great surprise that I've played around with basket weaving

Does not surprise me. Is it difficult?

Good past life story, neith. Those coils always are a pleasure for me to drink in.

8/3/07 2:41 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I think beautifully woven baskets tell stories. The hands get into rhythm and all the experiences of the weaver are probably written in. I think they process their day to day ups and downs while doing this and these tales go into the baskets.

I know some baskets are irresistible to me and I love them whenever I look at them, no matter how many times.

8/3/07 2:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Weaving makes things real, and useful, and solid!

Trees weave themselves together into great strong, complex beings, like music weaving all those notes and harmonies, thoughts and passions. Fibers are the notes, and patterns are harmonies. VoilĂ , a tree song and after much work, baskets so beautiful they can hold all that we put in them or just be stunningly beautiful, whether they are strong or delicate, they are lovely woven creations.

Neith is a beautiful weaver, and maker of warmth and protection.

tseka is a weaver of pater, paint, and myth. Great deep stories to tell.

joe, weaves the delicate designs of perfection on the delicate surface of an egg.

The process is wonderful.

Weaving the seen and the unseen....baskets and songs.

Astrid

8/3/07 2:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a matter of fact, I do have a "past" life memory of weaving baskets as a native American. I did gather white yucca & bear grass in Arizona - offering blood sacrifice in the process - and made a very small basket in the traditional Papago coil basket style. Deepened my already great respect for all basket makers . . . :-)

Not a surprise at all Neith!!

Astrid

8/3/07 2:56 PM  
Blogger Neith said...

Traditional style native baskets can be quite difficult to make. There lots of tricks to making the process easier but it's still a very time consuming process. Gathering & preparing the materials alone is a big project. It takes a great deal of strength in the hands as well as dexterity. Also can beat your hands up pretty good . . . :-)

The Aleut people of southern Alaska made these amazing baskets from the local grasses using a twining technique (similar weaving technique used to weave Chilkat blankets). It takes a completely different sense of time to practice these skills. We have moved so far away from that mindset that most people would be seriously challenged to find it again.

8/3/07 2:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And yes jm! Stories!

Astrid

8/3/07 2:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It takes a completely different sense of time to practice these skills

I hope it's all still in cell memory Neith.

Astrid

8/3/07 3:00 PM  
Blogger jm said...

It takes a completely different sense of time to practice these skills.

Slower?

This verifies my sense of basketry. Not a small thing, yet so widely done.

It's true about the weaving in trees.

8/3/07 3:11 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Gathering & preparing the materials alone is a big project.

A big one in all kinds of weaving. The plant dyes too.
Of course we all know how "we've" lost touch with these things, but there must be a replacement if we can catch it.

8/3/07 3:13 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I wonder if the mind/eye thing on the Net along with the rhythmical pecking of ideas is connected to this weaving process as we weave our thoughts together.

8/3/07 3:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you put a photo of your basket up on your blog Neith. Perhapse it is to precious and personal though.

I'm so happy to know you.

Astrid

8/3/07 3:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder if the mind/eye thing on the Net along with the rhythmical pecking of ideas is connected to this weaving process as we weave our thoughts together.

Yes.

Astrid

8/3/07 3:20 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Love the confidence.

8/3/07 3:22 PM  
Blogger Neith said...

Slower?

This verifies my sense of basketry. Not a small thing, yet so widely done.


It can take a week or more to gather materials, split them, etc. then they usually have to dry thoroughly before use. It can days or weeks to make a large basket in the coil style.

No different than Navajo weavers with their incredible blankets. Spin, dye the yarn, a month or more - then a couple of months or more weaving . . . :-) A deep quiet meditative state, lots of theta brain waves!

8/3/07 3:29 PM  
Blogger jm said...

This is interesting. From the derivation of the word "weave".

wefan: akin to WEB

8/3/07 3:29 PM  
Blogger jm said...

It can days or weeks to make a large basket in the coil style.

This is great info, neith. Just what I was searching for. This is getting woven into my thoughts, especially the waiting interludes...drying, setting, etc.

8/3/07 3:31 PM  
Anonymous Joe said...

That's what I like about my craft. It takes time, and you must select your "canvas" with care.

Come to think of it, I like my food slow, too. :o)

8/3/07 3:33 PM  
Blogger jm said...

It's all about reverence too. In terms of our communication, if we keep the larger blanket in mind, then the contributions from all of us are important.

8/3/07 3:33 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I love slow eaters and cookers!!!!

I used to watch my friend cook a pot of beans for what seemed like infinity.

And were they good?????
My god.

8/3/07 3:34 PM  
Blogger jm said...

It's so interesting about weaving and food. I've learned that when I cook a pot of something, it keeps "cooking" for at least 24 more hours in the fridge. It tastes entirely different the next day as the flavors keep weaving.

We must be all be on the Big Loom.

8/3/07 3:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love long simmered foods. Love, love, love. Fresh bread too!

Astrid

8/3/07 8:50 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I live on bread.

I've just started to learn the real art of simmering. It makes a huge difference.
In fact, tonight I'm going to slow simmer some yellow split peas. So there!

8/3/07 9:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh that sounds wonderful jm. Mmmmm!

Astrid

9/3/07 7:32 AM  
Blogger jm said...

Yellow peas, curry, cumin, slowly, slowly, slowly, and there it is. A pot of survival substance!

The great thing about slow simmering is I can leave it be, do something else, and pretend I'm not cooking!

Laboring over a stove is not a bad thing at all...I love when others do it... but I've lost interest entirely. Still, I have to do it, since I prefer my own cooking.

9/3/07 2:35 PM  

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