Willow Basketry

Dates: August 9-11, 2024
Instructor: Nick LaHaise
Fee: $325 + meals and accommodations fees
Term: Summer 2024

Workshop Description

In this 2-day workshop we will explore the foundations of stake and strand willow basketry. We will cover weaving techniques including; creating a solid base, adding upright stakes, wailing, randing and other decorative weaves, shaping the walls, and finishing off the basket with a border.  If time allows additional techniques such as adding a handle or foot will be covered. While weaving, we will discuss harvesting and cultivation methods, willow preparation, and ongoing care for your basket. The course is geared towards beginners, but those who have woven baskets before are welcome to come and continue learning new weaves and techniques.  This class focuses on process over product but you will definitely leave with a beautiful basket!  

Basket weavers
Nick LaHaise

Instructor Bio

Nick LaHaise is a basket weaver, green wood worker, carpenter, chef, and teacher.  He has studied various traditional arts, wilderness skills, deep nature connection mentoring,  and rites of passage over the last decade.  Nick currently organizes Buckeye Gathering, a weeklong ancestral skills gathering,  teaches woodworking at a Wild River Waldorf School in Truckee, and guides Wilderness Fasts through the School of Lost Borders.  He has been weaving baskets and teaching willow basketry for over 10 years, and is growing a small plot of basketry willow in Sierra Valley, where he lives with his family.





Workshop Schedule

Friday: Arrive before dinner at 6pm. After dinner, we will have a short orientation to the materials and to each other.

Saturday: Basketry all day!

Sunday: Keep working on baskets. Class will finish up around 2 pm

Workshop Supplies List

What to bring:

  • Pruning shears if you have them (think garden clippers, like Felcos)

  • A small craft knife 

  • Any ideas on the basket you would like to make!

Lodging and Camping Supplies

Camping gear if you are staying on campus:

  • tent and sleeping pad (unless you are staying in our tent with a cot provided)
  • warm sleeping bag
  • pillow, toiletries, and towel
  • flashlight and lantern
  • alarm clock

Field gear for everyone:

  • day pack
  • sunscreen
  • insect repellant
  • water bottles
  • plastic containers for packed lunches
  • sense of humor

You might also want to bring:

  • camera
  • binoculars
  • hand lens
  • camp chair - Strongly recommend this for songwriting circles!


The weather in the Sierra Nevada can vary greatly, even in a single day. Be prepared for chilly temperatures at night, even below freezing early in the summer. Rain is a possibility any time, whether forecast or not. Variable weather clothing that can be layered is best: long pants and a long-sleeved shirt, warm sweater and jacket, t-shirt and shorts or skirt, sturdy shoes or hiking boots, sun hat, rain gear, and a warm hat or gloves for cold weather and/or night activities. And, if you come later in the season, bring your swimsuit for afternoon dips in the lakes!