Handywork: Center offers basket-weaving coursePublished 11:43pm Thursday, August 29, 2013
Jean Bowen learned to weave a basket in 1982 and started teaching the lost art soon after.
Her class has become a tradition at the Seniors Center in Belhaven. The tradition will continue Wednesday when Bowen starts another eight-week session of classes.
“There’s a lot of people that take it that have been taking it for many years,” said Rodney Bowen, Jean’s husband. “I think it gives them an excuse to get out of the house.”
Rodney said the technique is easy to pick up. He has learned a thing or two over the years.
Jean loves the creativity involved with weaving baskets. She embellishes hers with shells, beads and stones. Her creations made of pine needles have won awards.
Jean works with students at every level of competency.
“Some of them get harder and some of them never progress,” Rodney said. “People get in a class and they start talking and carrying on and they miss where a reed goes. A lot them have too much fun.”
Jean admits the classes are a lot of fun, but her students are learning, too.
“They say it gets them ready for the mental institute,” she laughed. “I would assure them they’ll come home with some kind of basket – nearly complete.”
The classes start Wednesday morning from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Jean will have kits ready for new students at the first class. Additional kits may be bought for any new baskets the student wants to do.
Eight weeks cost $35 and the classes are open to people of all ages. For more information, call the center at 943-2992. If there is no answer, students can leave a message with a name and number to register.