Sandals

This post came from looking through a few class photos from Rabbitstick several years ago based on an inquiry. This is one of the years I taught my favorite sandal design, an ancient one though still cleverly marketed as a modern style.

I call them saint sandals as they look like something you would see on a medieval depiction of some holy wanderer from Europe or the Middle East.  To me, these are the greatest sandals I have ever owned.

This design is a good introduction to leather working and specifically, making footwear, which can be a bit more complex than most people know.  Shoes really need to fit well in order to not cause pain or damage to the feet so an open design is a good way to start on this craft.

As I make them, the sewing is fairly minimal and can be eliminated entirely with the use Barge Cement.  The sewing makes them a stronger design and I think adds a sense if beauty and craftsmanship to the final product.  It is also a good introduction to double needle saddle stitching.

With a little dedication, these can be made in a long half day and are ready for use immediately.

Thank you to all the patient students who have learned this and taken home to teach others.  I look forward to this class each time I offer it.

Primitive Arts

Today I’m prepping to present some primitive skills on Saturday, from raw materials to finished goods. I’m also getting some kid’s activities together to draw in the latest generation.

An assortment of stone-age technology laid out to take to the public.

Handcrafts

Some craftsmanship seen at Winter Count 2014.  Moving a little closer to a hand-made life, one skill at a time.

Ceramics by Roger Dorr, Woodwork by Mick Robins.

Ceramics by Roger Dorr, Woodwork by Mick Robins.

Hand made pottery made by artisans who collect the raw clays, slips, and paints make for greatly loved cookware and cups.  Wood turned on a foot-powered lathe from cleared alder trees make for intimate dinnerware.

Pots

The wares of just one of the many great craftspeople associated with Backtracks and the Society of Primitive Technology.

Many cultures are represented at the gatherings but in the Southwest, the black-on-white ceramics dominate the fancy wares.

Packbasket

Packbasket

Packbaskets are found worldwide but only in small sectors of the western population.  This one is particularly beautiful.

Making a bowl by burning and scraping.

Making a bowl by burning and scraping.  Delicious ducks roasting in the background.

Even a simple bowl can be a satisfying accomplishment when it holds it’s first meal.

Fresh deer skins being turned into buckskin.

Fresh deer skins being turned into buckskin.

A lot of time and labor goes into dressing a fresh deer hide but the payoff is immense.  Buckskin clothing will last for many many years.

Perfectly tanned hides by "Digger".

Perfectly tanned hides by “Digger”.

Skilled artisans and craftsmen can make the best customers as they know and understand the care and effort that goes into a handcrafted project.

musicThe talent doesn’t end with the crafting of artifacts.  People who “Make” have skills that reach far beyond the world of modern consumption.  The primitive technology crowd brims over with artists and musicians of many types and genres.

More making, less taking.