Willow-weaving and Basketmaking Workshops

Ecological, Sustainable and Naturally Beautiful

About Me imageAbout Me image

My interest in basketmaking was sparked more than twenty years ago when I enrolled in a local basketry course. From that moment I was hooked. The possibilities for creativity out of, essentially, a pile of sticks were endless and I wanted to learn all the techniques. Since then I deepened my knowledge through attending as many workshops and courses by as many different basketmakers as I could find or afford! The City Lit College in Covent Garden, West Dean College near Chichester and Westhope Craft College in Shropshire have all provided me with inspirational teachers and teaching. In 2016/17 I completed the City & Guilds course in Basketry at Westhope.

I have been a member of the Basketmakers' Association from my earliest days. This inspiring voluntary organisation opened my eyes to the incredible diversity within basketry, both traditional and contemporary, and to the many makers in this country and overseas. I am honoured to currently hold the position of Chair of the BA.

Gaining the City & Guilds qualification in basketry, followed by a teaching certificate, gave me the confidence to share my passion with others through teaching. I now run a comprehensive range of workshops and progressive courses from my teaching studio just outside WInchester. I also teach occasional adult education classes in Winchester and at other venues in Hampshire and beyond.

Nearly all my classes are aimed at complete beginners, or those with just a little previous experience. I do not run advanced skills classes. My joy comes from sharing my craft with those who have never experienced weaving with willow; hopefully developing a new generation of basketmakers, either as a hobby or a career change. Class sizes are always small so that I can give plenty of one-to-one attention, but this means that some workshops fill up quickly.

I am particularly proud of my Beginners' Basketmaking Course. Ongoing progressive skills teaching in basketry is hard to find anywhere in the UK and was one of the big stumbling blocks when I was setting out.  I run two intakes a year, January and September, and over the duration of twelve monthly sessions I provide a thorough grounding in roundwork basketry for complete beginners. This September I will be enrolling enthusiastic weavers into my 12th group.

I am always asked whether basketmaking is hard on the hands, and the answer is yes, to some extent! Certainly some beginners can find that by the end of the day they really know they have been working their fingers but most people soon get into the swing of weaving and are so absorbed they forget about any initial discomfort!

I hope I can encourage you to join me on one of my workshops so that you too can experience the pleasures of this ancient and sustainable craft. Or if you have someone special in your life who would appreciate attending a workshop, I offer gift vouchers: just drop me a line.

If you have any questions, or just want to chat about baskets, do get in touch via the Contacts page.

Louise


Member of the Basketmakers' Association  

Member of the Wessex Guild of Craftsmen



GIFT VOUCHERS
If you want to offer the gift of a basketmaking workshop, I offer gift vouchers - simply contact me to arrange.
Important Message for  existing Gift Voucher/Credit Note customers:
If you wish to redeem a Gift Voucher or Credit Note please contact me directly so that I can book you in manually.  These vouchers are not compatible with my current bookings system.


PRIVATE WORKSHOPS
If you cannot find the topic you would like on a date that suits you, do let me know and I can either set one up in the future or run one specially for you. One-to-one lessons can be arranged also. Equally if you have a group of friends who like to socialise with a focus, a basketmaking day can be a lot of fun. I run private workshops either at my teaching studio or in your home (if you have the space!) - just get in touch to discuss.


Mid-Summer Basketry School - 5-Day Crash Course - £385

Monday 17 - Friday 21 June 2024

New this year! This is a condensed version of my Beginners' Basketmaking Course for those who would rather complete a course all in one go. You will learn about how to obtain and process willow for weaving; how to make round bases; staking up the sides; various weaves and top borders; shaping and handles. No previous experience is required.

More details & Booking  

Beginners' Basketmaking Course: Module 1 - £295

Thursdays: September-December 2024 OR Saturdays: January-April 2025

This is the first of three modules of my Beginners' Basketmaking Course which is designed for complete beginners, or those with a little previous experience who wish to learn how to weave independently. The course takes you methodically through all the various processes involved in making round baskets in a slow and progressive manner. Each session is a month apart to give you time to practise. You can choose between starting in September (on Thursdays) or in January (on Saturdays).

More details & Booking  

Willow Weaving Wednesdays - £50 per session

Wednesday mornings, one topic per month

26 June & 3 July (NEW DATE): Dragonflies / 18 September: Sunflowers & Daisies / 9 October: Birdfeeders / 6 November: Catalan Platters / 4 December: Christmas Trees

More details & Booking  

Make a Basket in a Day - Egg Basket - £85

Thursday 28 September 2024

This is a simple basket that can easily be completed in a day's workshop: one type of weave, a very simple border and a plain handle. Ideal for collecting from your hens or just keeping your eggs on the countertop! CLICK button below for more details and to book.

More details & Booking  

Apple Basket - Two-Day Workshop - £160

Wednesday 2 - Thursday 3 October 2024

On this two-day workshop you will make a large round basket with over-arm handle for gathering apples, or any other produce.

More details & Booking  

Zig-Zag Storage Basket - Two-Day Workshop - £160

Saturday 5 - Sunday 6 October 2024

A large round basket, woven with a really interesting zig-zag weave and useful 'finger' handles. Great for tidying away toys, blankets and throws, knitting . . . whatever you need to store away neatly!

More details & Booking  

Quick Gift Baskets - £85

Thursday 7 November 2024

This simplified design will allow you to make at least two baskets in the day - then all you have to do is line then with festive tissue paper and fill with biscuits, confectionery, toiletries to make the perfect git. CLICK button below for more details and to book.

More details & Booking  

Christmas Decorations - £50-£85 per session

Wednesday 4 through to Sunday 8 December 2024

Five separate days of festive willow decorations in early December. Christmas Trees: Wed 4 / Trees, Reindeer and other decorations: Thurs 5 and Sat 7 / Festive Stars: Fri 6 and Sun 8

More details & Booking  

Where to Find Me imageWhere to Find Me image

3 Old Dairy Court - Burcot Farm - East Stratton - Winchester - Hampshire - SO21 3DZ

Old Dairy Court is a converted farm building at Burcot Farm, nine miles north-east of Winchester on Stratton Lane which links the villages of Northington and East Stratton. You can either travel cross-country or via the A33 Winchester-Basingstoke trunk road (which runs parallel to the M3)

Sat Nav SO21 3DZ takes you right there, or you can use what3words: ///foot.tape.upward.
There is ample car parking.



I also teach at:-

WINCHESTER ADULT EDUCATION
Peter Symonds College Adult & Higher Education Division, Stoney Lane, Weeke, Winchester, SO22 6DR 
Thursday 27 June 2024 6-9pm Dragonflies
Workshops are booked directly with the college:
01962 889547, or email ahed@psc.ac.uk, website www.psc.ac.uk/ahed 
(Willow weaving workshops can be found in Creative Arts section under the Leisure tab).

SIR HAROLD HILLIER GARDENS  
Jermyns Lane, Romsey SO51 0QA
Tuesday 19-Wednesday 20 November 2024- Large Asymmetric Basket
Wednesday 27 November 2024 - Christmas Decorations
Workshops are booked directly with the Gardens:
01794 368787, website https://www.hants.gov.uk/thingstodo/hilliergardens/learn

MESSUMS WILTSHIRE   
Chilmark SP3 5DU
29-30 August 2024 Log Basket
Workshops are booked directly with Messums Wiltshire:
01747 445041, website https://messumswiltshire.com/exhibitions/messums-creative/

WEALD & DOWNLAND LIVING MUSEUM
Town Lane, Singleton, Chichester, West Sussex PO18 0EU
Topics for 2024 to be arranged
Workshops are booked directly with Weald & Downland Living Museum
01243 811363, website https://www.wealddown.co.uk/





 I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed your Berry basket workshop, the Saturday before last. I know I was slow, but in the end I felt I had actually achieved something! You are a great teacher, very patient, very good at giving clear instructions & with obvious enthusiasm for you subject. I really hope to do another workshop sometime. 

Gillian

 I have attended many of Louise’s workshops and thoroughly enjoyed them all. Louise has the patience of a saint and if you lack a bit of confidence, she will guide you through gently. The groups are small which allows Louise time to support you. I’ve had great fun making everything from Christmas decorations and platters to a real life basket! Louise is extremely knowledgable and professional so you won’t fail to be amazed by what you produce. I can’t recommend her workshops highly enough. 

Lesley

 Just had to let you know how very much I enjoyed myself on Friday,my very warmest thanks.It was a super day,loved the location and the other ladies were good fun and terribly keen.Really chuffed with my first efforts and it was so lovely working with willow. I have to say you were brilliant at coaching us along and giving us such confidence,such a calming atmosphere. Looking forward to catching up with you again and will keep an eye on your website. Again many thanks. 

Tricia

 It was brilliant and you are such a great teacher. I am inordinately proud of my basket! Thank you!! 

Tonia

 Thanks Louise for such a wonderfully absorbing weekend.I had a great time and keep having to go and look at my basket. It has been admired by my husband, brother and sister so far! You are an excellent teacher in my opinion. Thanks again. 

Joanne

 Thank you so much for the wonderful work shop you gave yesterday. I could see how well planned it was and how you kept everyone going so that we were each able to complete a basket. You were very helpful and encouraging to a mixed ability group! I loved learning about, and experience, using different materials and tools. All held in such a beautiful venue. We had a lovely day. 

Jane

 Louise, thank you for a wonderful creative day today. The time flew by, you are a patient and inspirational teacher and I met sone lovely people. . I look forward to attending more of your workshops this year. Many thanks. 

Gail

 Just wanted to write to say how much I enjoyed the two-day course we just completed with you - it was such a lovely way to spend time with friends making something I think we were all rather chuffed with - your guidance, patience, and excellent tuition was superb - I knew absolutely nothing about this skill/craft but am so pleased with the result. I shall be recommending you to anyone who asks - and they will - when I show them my lovely basket! You were great company - and the time flew by - such fun! I know we all really enjoyed ourselves - thank you so much. 

Fiona (private group workshop)

 Hello Louise, Sean and I just wanted to thank you again for a fab day yesterday. We really learnt so much from you and were extremely happy with our baskets. This was by far the best workshop we have ever attended…….thanks to you, and is something that we will do again. Already looking forward to December! 

Rebecca & Sean

 You were well organised and made things very clear were encouraging supportive and amazingly energetic in trying to keep us going at a good pace. You couldn't have done more. I would recommend your courses to anyone who wouldn't normally have the opportunity to do something creative or those like self wanting to try a different discipline. I hope to do another. 

Judith

 A quick thank you for such a lovely weekend course. It was so interesting to learn something completely different and you were patience personified! The lovely basket I made on your course has been much admired - amazingly, the kids were really impressed and that doesn't happen often these days! 

Jenny

 I've had nothing but good reviews! Your teaching was very easy to understand and I think you built a lovely rapport with the group. We'll definitely look at another workshop next year. 

Wendy (private group workshop)

 Thank you so much for the wonderful course last Sunday. You are a phenomenal teacher - to get all of us beginners to produce such lovely baskets was, I thought, quite remarkable! I would love to continue learning with you. 

Emma

 Just wanted to drop you a note to say lovely to meet you and thank you for running such a great workshop and how much I’ve enjoyed the two days. Chuffed to bits with my basket and can’t believe you got us all to produce something of that size and quality in 2 days. Your method of teaching is so clear, organised and understandable and loved the studio- great space, warm, clean and comfortable. Look forward to joining you for another one in the not too distant future! 

Helen

 As I said to you, I will forever be grateful to you for having ignited the spark in me for willow and basketmaking. Not always straight and preferably without measurements and wonky shapes, but always done with so much appreciation and from the bottom of my heart. It makes me so happy! Without your stand at the Weald and Down Christmas Market, the basket I bought there and your postcard about you doing Courses I would not have discovered this love for willow and with that a connection to my Grandad! I am so much looking forward to the next Course with you - you are simply brilliant! So well structured, organised, never ending resource of knowledge, tips and hints and the most lovely person ever! 

Imke (Beginners' Basketmaking Course)

Upcoming Events

TitleDateLocation
Hampshire Open Studios at Broughton Village Art Exhibition 202417 Aug 2024Broughton Village Hall, High Street, Broughton, Hampshire SO20 8DX
Hampshire Open Studios with The Wessex Guild of Craftsmen at Upham Village Hall17 Aug 2024Upham Village Hall, Mortimers Lane, Lower Upham, SO32 1HF
Crawley Charity Gift Fair16 Nov 2024Crawley Village Hall, Crawley, nr Winchester, SO21 2PR
ADVENT at Weald & Downland22 Nov 2024Weald & Downland Living Museum
Makers Sale at The Grange Winery28 Nov 2024The Grange Winery, Burges Field, Itchen Stoke, Alresford SO24 0QW

Past Events

TitleDateLocation
Wessex Guild of Craftsmen Exhibition at Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, Romsey11 Jun 2024Sir Harold Hillier Gardens & Arboretum, Braishfield, Romsey
Winchester 'Go LD' Garden & Craft Fair08 May 2024Down Farm Lane, Headbourne Worthy, Winchester SO23 7LA, UK
Makers Sale at The Grange Winery30 Nov 2023The Winery, Alresford Road, Itchen Stoke, Alresford SO24 0QW
Goodworth Clatford Art & Craft Weekend 202303 Nov 2023Goodworth Clatford Village Club, Village Street, Goodworth Clatford, Hampshire SP11 7RE
Lewes Festival of Basketry "Over & Under"28 Oct 202314 Phoenix Place, Lewes, BN7 1JX
Hampshire Open Studios at Broughton Village Art Exhibition 202319 Aug 2023Broughton Village Hall, High Street, Broughton, Hampshire SO20 8DX
Hampshire Open Studios at Yellow Edge Gallery in Gosport16 Aug 2023Yellow Edge Gallery, 107 Stoke Road, Gosport, Hampshire PO12 1LR
Wessex Guild of Craftsmen Exhibition at Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, Romsey22 Jun 2023Sir Harold Hillier Gardens & Arboretum, Braishfield, Romsey
Weald & Downland Advent Christmas Experience & Market 26 & 27 November 202226 Nov 2022Weald & Downland Living Museum (Open Air Museum), Town Lane, Chichester, West Sussex PO18 0EU
Hampshire Open Studios26 Aug 2022Paterson Centre, Church Road, Swanmore, Southampton SO32 2PA,
Sir Harold Hillier Gardens & Arboretum - Pavilion Exhibition Space06 Jul 2022Sir Harold Hillier Gardens & Arboretum, Jermyns Lane, Romsey, Hampshire SO51 0QA
Weald & Downland Christmas Market - 3rd & 4th December - Copy03 Dec 2021Weald & Downland Living Museum (Open Air Museum), Town Lane, Chichester, West Sussex PO18 0EU
Charity Gift Fair, Crawley20 Nov 2021Crawley Village Hall, Crawley, Winchester SO21 2PR
Hampshire Open Studios (4 days only)27 Aug 2021The Paterson Centre, Church Rd, Swanmore, Southampton SO32 2PA
Wessex Guild of Craftsmen at Hilliers (12 days)04 Aug 2021Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, Braishfield, Romsey, Hampshire
Hampshire Country & Garden Festival27 Jun 2021Bere Mill, Whitchurch, Hampshire RG28 7NH
WInchester GoLD GARDEN & CRAFT FAIR23 Jun 2021Upper Farm, Down Farm Lane, Headbourne Worthy, Winchester SO23 7LA
Drawn to Craft - exhibition - 21 Nov to 20 Jan20 Jan 2020Salisbury Arts Centre, Bedwin St, Salisbury SP1 3UT
Victorian Christmas Fair, Ropley28 Nov 2019Parish Hall, Church St, Ropley
Charity Gift Fair, Crawley16 Nov 2019Crawley Village Hall, Nr Winchester, SO21 2PR
Christmas Craft Fair and Coffee & Mince Pie Morning30 Oct 2019Chilworth Hall, Chilworth Road, Southampton SO16 7JZ
Real Craft at Charterhouse26 Oct 2019Charterhouse, Godalming, Surrey GU7 2DE
Curdridge Country Show13 Jul 2019Curdridge Reading Room & Recreation Ground, Reading Room Lane, Curdridge SO32 2HE
Hannington Country Fair23 Jun 2019Hannington Village RG26 5TZ
Solent Gardeners Fayre & Craft02 Jun 2019Southampton University Playing Fields, Wide Lane, Eastleigh SO50 5PE
Garden Craft Fair25 Apr 2019Upper Farm, Down Farm Lane, Headbourne Worthy, Winchester SO23 7LA
Easton Village Christmas Fair02 Dec 2018Easton Village Hall, Easton, near Winchester
Inner Wheel Christmas Fair, Chilworth, Southampton22 Nov 2018Chilworth Village Hall, Chilworth, Southampton
Charity Gift Fair, Crawley17 Nov 2018Crawley Village Hall, Crawley, near Winchester SO21 2PR
Hampshire Open Studios24 Aug 201814 Forest Road, Chandler's Ford SO53 1LZ
Curdridge Country Show14 Jul 2018Reading Room Lane, Curdridge, Southampton SO32 2HE
Itchen Abbas Flower Festival08 Jul 2018Village Hall, Itchen Abbas, Winchester, UK
Solent Gardeners Fayre & Craft03 Jun 2018University of Southampton Playing Fields, Wide Lane, Eastleigh, Hampshire SO50 5PE
Bishop's Waltham Garden Fair06 May 2018Winters Hill Hall, Durley, Hampshire SO32 2AL
Charity Plant Sale & Open Garden03 May 2018Little Court, Crawley, Hampshire SO21 2PU
  • 3 Old Dairy Court, Burcot Farm, Winchester, Hampshire SO21 3DZ
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