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Willow Work Holidays

Willow work, and basket weaving in particular, is a craft that dates back thousands of years and can be found all over the world. When you think of a traditional willow basket, perhaps your mind goes to the great, sandbag laden baskets hanging underneath a hot air balloon, picnic hampers, or babies’ Moses baskets, but these days you’re just as likely to see a towering willow sculpture of some horses and hares.

Join master basket weaver and willow sculptor Anna Turnbull as she leads your through the all the principals of making a traditional round stake and strand basket. Under Anna’s watchful eye, you’ll develop your skills throughout the week and have ample time and opportunity to experiment with making your own creations.

No prior experience is necessary for this course and you can be sure that by the end of the week you’ll have at least one new basket to take home!

To see pictures of the course please visit our gallery

Dates 2021

Our willow work holidays run for 5-nights from Sunday to Friday and start from £849 per person.
The above is based on single occupancy. A £100 per person discount is applied for art, craft and activity guests on a shared occupancy basis.

April 18th to 23rd 2021
May 9th to 14th 2021
October 24th to 29th 2021

If you’re coming on one of our holidays and would like to bring a friend, partner, or member of your family who doesn’t want to do one of our courses, then we have you (and them!) covered. Accompanying guests can enjoy full board catering and shared accommodation with you. Please add them on at the checkout stage.

How to book
To book online, please click on your preferred date above.
For any questions or to book direct please call 01877 382 991 or email mail@gartmorehouse.com
If you have any questions, you may like to take a look at our FAQs but if you have any further queries, please contact our team directly.

Payment, Terms & Conditions
A £100 per person deposit is required to secure your booking. Full payment is due 6 weeks prior to arrival. For art, craft & activity holidays booked within 6 weeks of course start date, full payment is required at the time of booking. Art, craft & activity holidays are subject to availability and subject to change.

Sunday
Check in is from 4pm where you will receive a warm welcome from our team.
Once you are unpacked and settled, we invite you to enjoy some tea or coffee and home baking in the lounge where you can relax after your journey.
If you have never been on a holiday like this before, we understand how anxious you may be. That’s why, come 6pm, everyone will gather in the lounge for the Welcome Talk and Meet & Greet, giving you the chance to meet both your fellow guests and your tutor before the start of the course on Monday. Your tutor will talk you through what to expect from the week, discuss what you would like to achieve during your stay, and answer any questions you may have. 
From there, dinner is served at 6:30pm in the downstairs dining room.

Monday to Thursday*
Throughout the week, tuition runs from 10am to 4pm with regular breaks for tea and coffee so you can relax and have a natter with your fellow guests about everything you’ve been up to so far.
All your meals are served in the dining room.
Evening tea and coffee is available in the lounge at 9pm.

*Wednesday
After a few days of working hard on your craft, you may like to take a break and head out to explore a little bit of the local area with a scenic sail across Loch Katrine. If you would prefer to stay in the house, then you are free to pursue your craft at your leisure but please note that your tutor will not be on hand for tuition on the Wednesday afternoon.

Friday
Check out by 10am

What’s Included

  • 4 days of specialist tuition from Anna Turnbull
  • All materials required for the course
  • Full board catering
  • En-suite accommodation
  • Complimentary afternoon trip to Loch Katrine
  • Complimentary transfers from Stirling train station are available on the arrival and departure days (pick-up from the station at 15:30, departs Gartmore House at 10:00). Transfers from Glasgow or Edinburgh Airports are available at an additional cost.

All course materials and equipment are included.

Tutor – Anna Turnbull
Your tutor Anna Turnbull is a basket maker and willow sculptor. She is a member of The Basketmakers’ Association, Scottish Basketmakers’ Circle and Heritage Craft Association.

From an early age Anna has loved drawing, making and creating. Upon leaving school she studied Fine Art at Camberwell School of Art, London, then worked as a photographic artist and silversmith. A few years later she trained to teach whilst continuing on her creative journey. Drawn to tactile media, natural materials and textiles she discovered willow. It is currently her primary creative outlet.

She grows a variety of species, each with different qualities. Employing the traditional skills of basketry she weaves baskets, adapting these techniques to more contemporary forms and sculptural pieces. She is building a reputation for weaving ‘beautiful rhythmic willows sculptures’.

Anna exhibits widely, makes work to commission and enjoying teaching she runs regular workshops.

“It is a privilege to help others along their creative journey, sharing skills, overcoming challenges and supporting them as they produce something of which they can be proud.”

You can find out more about tutor Anna’s work on her website.

Reviews from previous willow work guests:

  • ‘Did not know what to expect – but far, far better than I could have imagined.’ Joan, Willow Work Holiday
  • ‘The ‘Last Supper’ created a great finishing touch and made for a memorable stay.’ Jean, Willow Work Holiday
  • ‘A wonderful experience. Perfect atmosphere and environment. Friendly staff. Loved it. Many thanks.’ Willow Work Course Holiday

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