Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Basket Making

We were recently blessed to have a basketmaker visit Mashiah Foundation and train a few of our women on basketmaking. Jane has made numerous trips to Nigeria with her husband over the last 5 years. She had a little extra time on her hands this trip, so we searched for some basket materials, and she went to work.

It's quite difficult for us to get the cane materials here, but with a lot of perseverance, we were able to get a little bit. We're still trying to find someone who can supply us regularly.
Our women caught on to the techniques Jane was teaching. Now the key is to keep them practicing so they won't forget their new skills!

Here the women are attempting a 5-strand braid which they eventually figured out.

Jane even taught herself something new while she was here: weaving fabric into the baskets. I'm quite pleased with the results.

Jane struggled with the quality of cane we were able to find here--it was not up to the caliber of cane she orders from China. She said she toyed around with the idea of bringing some with her, but I told her I was glad she didn't. If the women had learned with the higher quality cane, they may have been easily frustrated with what is available here. I feel it is better to learn to work with local materials rather than be dependent on foreign supplies. This also helps our work to be more sustainable in the long-run.

1 comment:

Sarah E. said...

oh, I want a set with the fabric can I order? Do you have turquoise? The pix are fabulous! Congrats to the ladies on such great work!!