Wicker. Yes, it's nice enough, but I wouldn't call us wicker fanatics. However, while in Denmark, Justin, Tilly and I found ourselves at the wicker festival in Moesgaard, just a few kilometres from our summerhouse, surrounded by wicker, wicker weavers, and fellow wicker-weaver watchers. And let me tell you something. It's not all about baskets.
Hobbit homes. Is it just me, or have you ever wanted to live in The Shire? I can just imagine Bilbo's little face poking up through the window of this little wicker hut. Precious.
The willow branches, though cut from the tree, can take root and start to produce leaves of their own after they've been woven, giving the little huts a healthy mop of green hair, which you could trim or style as you like.
Wouldn't it be fun as a little playhouse in the garden? Tilly could pretend she was a panda. I'm sure, given the chance, she'd be gnawing on the shoots quite happily.
It seems simple enough to create at home -- winding, bending, in here and out there. Our neighbours across the road even have a willow tree in dire need of a prune, so perhaps they'd be happy to let us help ourselves to some branches? Verdict: We could make that.
Basket Huts. If you're not feeling Bilbo's hobbit home, what about a more Dr. Seuss-esque hut, with a strange and bendy chimney? Verdict: This seems rather more intricate (i.e. not for us first-time wickerists)
Pig-tail Trees. Another simple idea that we saw was braiding several willow branches, and then planting them in soil so that they took root. I'm not sure how well they would survive, or continue to grow, but they might look lovely sprouting up from the plant pot bench I mentioned last time. Verdict: Easy weave.
Evil Pigs. I know, you're wondering where the red is in this leafy middle-of-a-field post. Look no further than Mr. Pig's knobbly little wicker eyes. I'm imagining Watership Down, but with crazy pigs. Scared? Yes, me too.
Tilly, though, loved the wicker pig, and pestered him through the fence so much that the artist set him loose. Nevermind that I will have nightmares about Piggy standing in the corner of my room, his glowing red eyes fixed on me.
Miniature Replicas of the Space Needle. Or is it a tiki torch? Verdict: Tilly gives her seal of approval.
Yes, there were baskets, too. But they were interesting, slopey-topped, bulging-bottomed, baskets with character.
This lady was off home with her new bit o' wicker. Go on, take that helmet off and put the basket on your head... you know you want to.
What about you -- did you think wicker was wicked already? Does that pig give you the heebie jeebies too? Do you ever want to drop everything, run off to New Zealand, and become a hobbit?