Sheri Smith

Working with fibers has always been a part of my life. My mother and grandmother were knitting, crocheting and doing cross-stitch and encouraged me to do the same. During the summer of my 13th year, I had an order for twelve dozen knitted shoulder bags for a department store chain. It was a lucky break because my aunt was the purse buyer at the time.

The first time I held a pine needle basket was in the early 1980’s. My sister-in-law had been taking a class in coiling and shared the instructions with me. Always being drawn to fiber, my creative juices at the time were being fed making splint woven and wicker baskets – baskets with a purpose. The aroma and the detail in the coiled piece began the love affair I continue to have with pine needles.

At that time my ex-husband and I were living at a home we built on the McKenzie River in Oregon. The only access to it was by a cable car that hung over the river, with a private natural hot springs tub in our front yard. Being surrounded by beauty enhanced my creativity. The solitude allowed me the time to play with my new medium.

After coiling with only natural pine needles and raffia for many years I began to explore dying the fibers and incorporating other elements into each piece. I use ancient basket making techniques to create what I like to call “eye candy”, beauty and artistry, pure and simple. The common thread woven through each piece is a touch of whimsy.

Teaching this creative process for the past twenty plus years has given me the opportunity to not only pass this fulfilling art form on to others, but a wonderful way to connect with them as well.

Sheri Smith Pine Needle Creations Website

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