At last a blog! We have been without internet for three months and are now back to normal (thank you to Orange for a speedy resolution to this problem!!)
Now working on stock baskets and orders.
As usual at this time of year we have been making lots of log baskets. Open wood fires and wood burners are widely used in this part of France as cheap chestnut and oak is readily available for burning. We had to clear some woodland to plant our willow bed and I estimate we have another four to five years in the wood store. I love the process of cutting, stacking in the wood store, loading into a basket for the house and then luxuriating in the warmth of the fire on a cold winters night. We have made many different styles of log baskets over the years. One of the first ones I learnt was a one bushel skep (image above centre shows some one bushel skeps waiting for delivery to David Mellor Design in London) This was a basket used in Norfolk for cattle feed and jobs around the farm. We made half bushels, one bushels and one and a half’s and with plenty of shape to the bottom, these baskets would last many years. We now make round, oval, rectangular and free form, many sizes of each and alongside our standard ones we make to customer specification.
We used a half bushel for kindling which I made in 1986 and left it behind in England on our move to France 29 years later! It was quite fragile but still in use, I think the only thing that was keeping it together was the woodworm holding hands! It had been in daily use through every winter for 29 years and stored in an outhouse, occasionally soaked in the summertime to tighten it up and no further care was necessary.
Anyway enjoy your log fires and use a well made basket for added pleasure. Keep warm 🙂