The Willow Blog

The Abstract Project features Lakeshore Willows

The Abstract Project features Lakeshore Willows

In the Spring of 2014, Jennifer Elliotson and photographer Nataschia Wielink came to Lakeshore Willows to create a story for the Abstract Project - a series of blog stories featuring local artists. 

It was wonderful and very inspirational to get to know Jennifer Elliotson, the woman behind the HandMade Market here in Niagara.  On her website Cherries in the Sun you will gain inspiration from this very multi- talented, energetic and curious life-loving person. 

During her visit Jennifer decided to sign up for a basketry workshop, and she turned out to be a natural weaver. 

Jennifer wrote a lovely two part series about her experience at Lakeshore Willows and making her very own basket that she adores.  This series is featured on her website Cherries in the Sun. 

Part 1: The Abstract Project: The Fence That Changed Everything

It all started when Lene Rasmussen travelled to her home in Denmark one summer. While there, she stumbled upon an extraordinary fence, hand-woven from natural willow. As she admired the willow fence, it became a divider, separating the time before and the moment after. Her mother’s recent passing had given Lene a refreshed perspective and this willow fence suggested a way to put thoughts into action – a way to close a door to the old life and a step out onto the path of something new.

The willow fence was breathtakingly beautiful. It was long and sweeping, a piece of woven art, serving both form and function. Lene dreamt of making this fence in the future, maybe even crafting it for somebody … around their home or in their garden. She envisioned this in her mind and decided then and there, that she would learn how to make a willow fence. It became a goal. A beautiful dream.

Click Here to continue this story ... 

Part 2: The Abstract Project: A-Tisket, A-Tasket ... I Love My Basket! 

I made a basket!  … and have been floating on a cloud of happiness since I completed it.

It’s a beautiful basket … but not a perfect basket. The handle is a wee bit crooked and the rim is a tad uneven due to noncompliance with some of the rules in basketry. All in all though, including a few errors, I am immensely happy and, yes, even a bit proud of myself for what I accomplished in creating my very own homemade basket.

We have become inseparable. Unofficially, I’ve named it my “book basket”, but a wide variety of items have already been nestled inside, not just books.  We’ve been to the park, out for dinner, the shopping mall, a soccer pitch, on many car rides and even the memorial service for my Aunt Martha. I don’t know how I ever managed without it. And, yes, obviously, it’s grand for picnics! Incidentally, my basket has become a wonderful purse replacement.

Click Here to continue this story ... 

At Lakeshore Willows we offer a variety basketry workshops for weavers of all experience levels.  Contact us for more information. 

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