Asymmetrical Baskets

October 5 – October 6, 2023
9 am to 5 pm


In this class, students learn and practice traditional weaving techniques while creating a contemporary and organically shaped functional basket. We will use an innately colorful selection of willows and learn about the cultivation and processing of this historically important natural material. Our baskets will be built from a round base with weaves mostly in the European tradition, including pairing, waling, randing and woven borders. This particular basket was designed by Danish weaver Ane Lyngsgaard. A supplied sturdy branch or driftwood handle will finish off this unusual basket, or students may bring their own special piece of driftwood to incorporate into the piece. This class is suitable for intermediate beginning weavers: those who have woven at least a few willow baskets under instruction, who want to learn some modified versions of the basic weaves to create this piece, and also to learn about creativity in the construction of a new basket form. Willow is a stronger more tension-y material than many other basketry materials, strong hands are recommended for this course. Care and use of finished pieces will be discussed in class.

Skills and Techniques:

• A building of skills in several weaving techniques/patterns:
Pairing/reverse pairing
Three-rod wale and four-rod wale
A variety of “side weaves” including French randing, English randing, slewing, packing, and zig-zag weave
Woven rod borders

• Learning the “feel” of weaving with willow, a unique material in the US

• A building of skill in the use of willow weaving specific tools:
Rapping Iron
Shaping ties and hoops
Clippers in a willow context

• Learning how organic basket shapes are constructed, and how contemporary designs are created.

Materials Fee:
$50 Paid at the time of workshop.

Special Tools or Equipment: Instructor will provide all tools required. Students may bring these tools if they already have them: bodkin, high-quality sharp pruners (Felco or similar), fid, conditioning tool (I call it the “Very Important Tool”, a perfect cylinder with no seams, appx 3” in diameter, usually a reusable water bottle/thermos or spray can), 2-4lb weights

Instructors COVID preference: Your instructor reserves the right to require safety requirements depending on the state of the pandemic at the time of the workshop.

Workshop Policies

Please be sure to read our policies before you register for a workshop.

Age Requirements

The minimum age to attend a regularly scheduled workshop is 16 years. We have set this age to ensure a safe, productive, and community-building experience for all of our students. There are no exceptions.

Accessibility & Accommodations

If you have questions about accessibility or would like to request reasonable accommodations, please contact our main office at 603-435-7314.

Student Cancellations

Cancellations must be made at least 30 days prior to the start date of a workshop in order to receive a refund.
Registration and material costs will be refunded, minus a non-refundable $25.00 registration fee.
A full refund will be made for any amount paid for overnight housing.

Sanborn Mills Farm Cancellations

Each workshop must have a minimum number of students to be held. If Sanborn Mills Farm finds it necessary to cancel a workshop, we will notify students two weeks prior to the scheduled workshop start date.
A full refund will be provided to registered students. Refunds for a workshop purchased as a gift will be made to the purchaser only. Sanborn Mills Farm cannot be held responsible for any refunds for travel expenses or for off-site housing expenses incurred as the result of a cancellation of any kind.

Housing & Meals

Please refer to our housing page for more information.


Each workshop has its own safety procedures. Your instructor will review the specific safety requirements at the start of your workshop and throughout your class. Sanborn Mills Farm is a rural setting. If you are allergic to insect bites, please alert your instructor of your allergy and bring an epipen with you. For draft animal workshops or courses requiring time in the woods, be sure to review tick safety procedures from Tick Free NH. We advise students to wear comfortable clothing, comfortable and secure shoes, and consider your personal needs for a day or extended stay.