Weaving camp baskets is a traditional arts and crafts activity just about everyone enjoys at Rockbrook. Over near the fiber arts cabin we call “Curosty,” there’s a nice stream flowing by, and it’s there that girls often work on their baskets. It’s a really nice spot to sit and soak your feet on a summer afternoon, but also, the water is important for the basket weaving. To bend and weave the wicker (cane, reed, or grass) fibers, it helps to soak them in water for a while. This softens the fibers making them more flexible for weaving.
Basketry is a truly ancient art. Native people around the world have been making baskets for as long as anyone can remember. Near us at camp, the Cherokee split oak baskets come to mind as a good example. Our camp baskets may not be as elaborate as these, but the girls at Rockbrook are continuing this long tradition of basket making in the mountains of North Carolina.