Weave a willow hen basket with Dominic Parrette

Basketmaking, chair seating and willow work

Ref: S2D11894

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About this course

Learn to make this traditional frame basket, with a hen-like shape. You will learn how construct the willow hoops and ribs and use a randing weave as you build up your basket.

Course Description

These traditional frame baskets are believed to originate in the Scottish Islands, although the forms are also found elsewhere in Europe.

You will start with the construction of willow hoops to make the frame and then will set these on a jig or former to help control the basket shape. A randing weave will be used throughout the basket with additional ribs added as the basket builds. You will learn a weaving technique known as packing, as a necessary part of frame basket construction.

The aim is to improve your frame basketry technique with particular emphasis on frame construction.

The skills learnt will include materials selection, preparation and use; use of jigs to set frame shape; techniques to set hoops accurately; setting ribs with symmetry; and packing as a weaving technique.

You will gain an understanding of how to construct three-dimensional woven form using frame basket techniques.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • On this course the tutor will supply all of the materials.

What students need to bring

  • Apron
  • Sturdy footwear with covered toes
  • Sharp secateurs or side cutters (if possible)
  • Camera (optional) to record techniques
Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio, this includes stout covered footwear i.e. no open-toed shoes or sandals.


Dominic Parrette

Dominic is a basketmaker and coppice worker with over ten years experience in teaching his craft.
He makes a woven willow structures, organic forms and frame baskets using a range of traditional and contemporary techniques.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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