Rushes. .. now is the time to collect and to use them!
In the late 80s I took a group of people on a basket tour to England. One of our visits was to a small business, called Waveney, in the county of Suffolk. Here they made rush mats and a variety of rush baskets.
Rushes are also used in England to make hats which are traditionally worn for dancing around the maypole on May Day This August, I plan to make a rush mat for the museum, using rushes from Dalhousie lake.
The first few weeks we will be making the long braids and later sewing them together on a flat surface.
If anyone is interested, come and help me make the braids. We could also go and collect rushes at the lake close by.
See pictures below show workers making the large variety of different braids. Others show the making of a waste paper basket over a wooden frame and the finished mat and log basket.