Basketmaking, chair seating and willow work

Willow baskets and purses on a Catalan base – a contemporary approach with Anne Mette Hjornholm

Ref: SSS08955


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About this course

Investigate making baskets, purses or bags, based on the Catalan base technique. Extend your skills to make narrow baskets with fine willow sides, woven in the Irish open technique and variations of French randing and fitching. Master and appreciate the beauty and possibilities of this form of basket.

Course Description

We will be starting all baskets on a Catalan base, which means weaving the base on a hoop and leaving the thin ends to be the stakes of the basket. This is a great technique for narrow baskets or bags/purses with a possibility of weaving with fine willow on the sides.

The aim is that you will master and fully understand the technique, the beauty and the possibilities of this basketry technique, and also master any difficulties it presents.

You need to have acquired basic skills of making willow baskets, before to attending this course.

Several evening events are planned throughout the week, a detailed timetable for your summer school week will be given to you on arrival. This will include:

Special Summer School features:

• Short inspirational talks by tutors and displays of their work

• A swap-over session to another course of your choice

• An optional evening at the Chichester Festival Theatre (pre-booked)

• A celebration with dinner, entertainment and music

• Workshop displays of students' work and informal end-of-course group reviews


Timetable for Summer Schools

Several evening events are planned throughout the week, a detailed timetable for the summer schools will be given to you on arrival.

Arrival Day

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).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops, 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 should vacate their rooms by 10am please.

Course Materials


  • Willow provided for the course

What students need to bring

  • Pair of sharp secateurs (preferably 'parrot-beak' shape)
  • Pen knife, or similar
  • A basketmakers bodkin (at least 5")
  • A rapping iron or small hammer and a weight (4-10lbs), if you have them.
  • A 5ft piece of cloth to keep your willow damp (towelling or blanket)
  • 2-3 spring clothes pegs
  • A tape measure
  • A spray bottle for water
  • Sturdy covered footwear is essential in the workshop

Available to buy

  • Basketmakers bodkins
  • Masking tape


Anne Mette Hjornholm

Anne Mette Hjornholm trained as a textile designer, mostly weaving, and graduated from the Arts and Crafts School in Copenhagen in 1989. She has been making baskets since 1988, after attending her first course in Denmark. Basketmaking was a hobby for many years, before she became a self-employed/professional baskets maker in 2000.


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

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