Enriching lives through art and craft

Black Ash: Weaving A Most Useful Handbag Basket

October 1 - 6, 2023

April Stone  ·  instagram.com/april.l.stone

Workshop at a glance

Working with black ash, learn the techniques and subtleties needed to bring it from raw material to a finished handbag basket.


  • Raw material procurement and processing
  • Black Ash log pounding, splint splitting, scraping, and cutting
  • Thoughtful basket design followed by basket lay-out
  • Continuous vs one-round weaving


  • Pre-harvested black ash
  • Splint
  • Simple tools such as scissors and knife


  • Discovering appreciation and understanding of black ash
  • Splint basketry and techniques
  • Working with the materials
  • Completing a basket to take home

Artist Bio

April L. Stone is a self-taught ash basket weaver and member of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe. The strength of this natural material moved her to learn all she could about the qualities and characteristics of the wood, what it could do, and how to weave with it. This has been her pursuit for almost 15 years. Stone appreciates how the finished basket, traditional teachings and healing all come together during the creative process of basket making. She received national recognition for her working knowledge of black ash basketry while being thought of as a patient, gentle educator.

  • April Stone
  • April Stone
  • April Stone
  • April Stone
  • April Stone

Workshop Description

Black ash, also known as “Baapaagimaak” to the Ojibwe people around the shores of Lake Superior, has been used for making very strong baskets since pre-contact and is still used today as a basket material of choice in those geographical ranges. In this workshop students will develop a deeper understanding of what it takes to retrieve the raw material from a harvested tree. During class you will practice splitting, scraping, and cutting the material with simple tools. Having this knowledge will allow participants to prep the material to create a most useful basket for every day needs. Open to all skill levels.

COURSE FEE: $690  ·  materials list

The health and safety of students, faculty, and staff is a priority at Arrowmont. To that end, a Personal Conduct & Social Distancing Policy has been adopted to foster a safe learning environment during the coronavirus pandemic. Click here for the detailed Policy.


In order to complete your registration, a $300 deposit is required.

Available : 4
Call 865-436-5860 with questions about registering for this workshop.

ART WORKSTENNESSEE ARTS COMMISIONTENNESSEE FOR THE ARTSTennessee Specialty License PlatesEAST TENNESSEE FOUNDATIONWindgate Foundation Arrowmont is being supported, in whole or in part, by federal award number SLFRP5534 awarded to the State of Tennessee by the U.S. Department of Treasury.

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