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Welcome to the New Look of the
Nova Scotia Basketry Guild

On December 1st, 2015 the Nova Scotia Registry of Joint Stocks struck us off the list of Registered Societies of the Province.  We are now free to reinvent ourselves without the legalities of being a registered society.
We are officially an Ad hoc group of basketweavers.


we continue as a dynamic group with Joleen at the helm as Co-ordinator
with the same mandate and goals as we have always had.

We have not disbanded we have just reorganized ourselves.
What does this mean?  Well here is a brief list of the changes:

1) Weekly Tuesday Workshops
2) Demonstrations around the province will continue
3) Website and E-mail Notices to remain as in the past
4) Workshops other than Tuesdays will be organized by the instructor and participants will cover all costs of the workshop
5) No more Annual Dues
6) No more Regular Monthly Workshops
7) No more Formal Meetings
8) No more Archiving of NSBG printed documents
February 6, 2016 Annual General Meeting

The Past Executive members met in Joleen's condo to discuss the New Nova Scotia Basketry Guild.  On December 1, 2015 the Joint Registry of Stocks granted us De-registration as a Registered  Not-for-Profit society.

NSBG Ad hoc meeting February 6 2016
Nova Scotia has a rich background in diverse basketry traditions that we want to foster, but on our own terms.  Being free of government restraints does not mean we abandon our principles.  We love baskets and basket making and we still want to promote both. 
The functions of the guild to educate, to promote basket making, to preserve historic practices, and to promote new innovations, (such as the amalgamation of quill work of petroglyphs) will continue but without the restraints and red tape imposed upon us by government regulations.

The mandate of the Nova Scotia Basketry Guild is:

to share information about basketry
to promote an awareness of basketry to the community-at-large
to promote the preservation of traditional Nova Scotia basketry techniques
to promote the development of contemporary basketry techniques

For example Joleen reported on the upcoming willow class at Ross farm.  This will be a two day workshop taught by Heather Sanft.  The guild has helped to fund this workshop (in 2015) and will help promote it through our notices.

Donna reported that she and her co-volunteer would like to have a paper strip Easter basket workshop at the Ronald MacDonald Room at the IWK hospital on Good Friday. She would look to the guild for copies of the instructions, and kits for about 20 participants.  The Guild does have some materials stored for both workshops and demonstrations.

The guild would also like to continue to do demonstrations such as we have done in the past for the NSDCC craft fairs.  We have requests from other groups around the province which our members will be asked to participate in.

We can decide as a group to reinstate dues but at the moment any member wishing to do something that has a cost must ‘self fund’ the enterprise.  One case in point is our web page: as an Ad hoc group with no money Chebucto Net will give us the web space free for our web-page, but the domain name which directs people to our webpage and e-mail address will cost $20 per year, which Pat will happily pay to avoid having to completely redesign the web page at this point.

Our NSBG Notices will continue as before with Tidbits of interest to our Basketry Community.  We have had a bit of a lapse with Joleen moving and all of us waiting for the deregistration but we fully intend to continue letting everyone know what is happening in Basketry.

The guild can still help organize workshops but these workshops will have to pay for themselves.  In the past the guild has usually subsidized these workshops from the dues collected.  Now a teacher will set his/her minimum instructor fees, add the cost of materials and space fee if needed.  The total cost is added up and divided by the number of students to give cost per student.  If the minimum number of participants is not achieved the course will need to be cancelled, or the fee increased at the discretion of the instructor and registered participants.

Also we will no longer be archiving printed documents/records for the NSBG.  Anything that is sent electronically to the membership is being saved on Pat's computer and backups.
March 29, 2015 Annual General Meeting

Nova Scotia Basketry Guild Annual General Meeting – March 29, 2015 at the Braemar Superstore at 1pm.   This meeting had been cancelled several times due to snow storms which seem to never end this winter, and a storm on March 28th reduced physical attendance somewhat.  Our main focus this year was on the Deregistration of the Guild as a Registered Not-for-Profit society.

Joleen brought up a discussion of the relationship of the Ross Farm Learning Centre and The NSBG.  It was agreed that the basketry guild would favour cooperation with the learning centre and might hold or cooperate in workshops at the centre and might offer some of our library books to the centre. Joleen cannot continue to house the Guild library and the learning centre does not want all of the library.  However they will probably want some of the books and maybe some of the pamphlets, we shall continue discussion  with Lisa Wolf of Ross farm regarding workshops, the library, etc. For the moment however Cathy MacGray has offered to provide a home for the library.

It was agreed that formal newsletters would be discontinued in favor of notices sent out as issues necessitated.

Regarding the de-registration of the NSBG as a registered not-for-profit society to a non-registered society, the following special resolution was moved by Pat Othen and seconded by Donna Silvert.  (Notice of this resolution was distributed with the notices for the AGM.)

"That the Nova Scotia Basketry Guild cease as a Registered Not-for-Profit society, before December 31st, 2015.  The society will continue to function as it has in the past but as a non-registered society in the Province of Nova Scotia.  That we will reduce our only asset (Cash) to $12.50 the cost of de-registration."  After discussion the vote was unanimous, the resolution was approved.  Both email and attendee votes were counted.

Lillian Fowler moved to adjourn. The meeting adjourned at about 2:55 pm.

President's Report on the Calendar Year 2014

Our Program Committee of Joleen Gordon and Anita Price offered workshops for 2014 focusing on using the basketry techniques of "pairing" or "twining" as well as other varied workshops.

January 19 -- "Shifting Ground", a major exhibit of aboriginal art from across Canada at the AGNS was the subject of our first gathering of the year.  Unfortunately, there was a low registration and a snowstorm which resulted in this visit being cancelled.
February 15 -- Cheryl Simon gave another of her interesting workshops on Mi'kmaw Porcupine Quill Work reproducing Mi'kmaw petroglyphs on birch bark with 'pairs' of porcupine quills inserted into the bark.
March 15 -- During our AGM at the Gordon home members enjoyed a free exchange of weaving materials and had an opportunity to browse our library in search of new ideas for projects.
April 12, May 17 -- Members enjoyed a gathering day on the 12th and on May 17th wove their "Osier Dogwood and Acadian Willow" casserole dish baskets.
April 19 -- A 'NEW' pop up class was held at the Gordon Workshop.  Easter Basket Nests were made to hold beautifully dyed eggs.
June  -- no workshop held.
July 11, 12, 13 -- A Red Maple Basket workshop was offered with Pam Wall but with low registration it was cancelled.
August -- No workshop was held
September 14 -- A popular basket workshop, the double walled basket with reed and seagrass, was scheduled but with a low registration, all of whom attend the Tuesday morning gatherings at the Gordon home, it was decided to work on this project at that time.
October 18  -- Harvest Cornucopia/Horn of Plenty Workshop was held.
November 16 -- A seasonal woodland wreath workshop was held at Cox Lake.
December 6 -- Monique Veinott, a Guild member and a member of the Ross Farm Museum staff, taught us how to make braided pine ornaments from yellow birch sheens.

Field Trip -- During the summer Lavender Festival, members enjoyed a delightful day trip to the Seafoam Lavender Farm in Seafoam, Pictou County where they made lavender wands.

Other activities etc. ------
-- Our NSBG Website, Newsletter and Notices continue to be updated and monitored by our efficient Web Mistress, Pat Othen, who we thank for keeping us informed of activities.

-- During the year we were saddened to learn that three of our members had passed away.  Jesse Metter, Halifax, (May 18, 2014) was one of our newer members who shared her passion for the environment with the Guild.  We lost two of our Honorary Members, Greg McEwan, Bear River (April 5, 2014) and Annie Paul, Indian Brook (October 27, 2014).  In recent years Greg, along with his partner, Margaret Sloan, gave several ash basket workshops (with a dash of humour thrown in) for the Guild at Cox Lake and demonstrated his wonderful basketry skills during our 20th Anniversary Celebrations in Dartmouth.  Annie Paul was known for her beautiful poplar flowers.  Some of us were fortunate to visit with her at her home a few years ago to learn more about her work and were able to purchase her flowers.  These members will be missed but fondly remembered for their beautiful work and contribution to preserving the traditional crafts of Nova Scotia.

-- Joleen and don continued to warmly welcome the "Tuesday Basketers" with fresh coffee, tea and blueberry muffins each week as we completed workshop projects or began new individual/group projects.  Much laughter and conversation was enjoyed and yes, we did weave our baskets! We invite other Guild members to join us and thank Joleen and Don for having us.

-- Congratulations to our President, Joleen Gordon, for having her book, Baskets of Black Nova Scotians, a history of basketmaking traditions brought to Nova Scotia by the Black refugees during the War of 1812, published as the first E-book of the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History.  If you haven't seen it, you can download or read it from  the Museum's website.  It was wonderful to see and meet members of Mrs. Clayton's family at the launch held at the Nova Scotia Museum of the Atlantic.

-- There were 51 members on our membership list at the end of 2014.  Thank you to everyone who volunteered throughout the year.

-- Looking forward, there will be a birch bark workshop held in June, details of which will be posted when plans are finalized.

Respectfully submitted,
Joleen Gordon, President,
Lillian Fowler Vice-President
March 15, 2014 Annual General Meeting

Our Annual General Meeting took place over the noon hour (noon to 1:00pm)  in the front room (with a fire in the fireplace) of the home of the President . Before and after the meeting we had a Free Exchange of extra weaving materials of all shapes, sorts, colours and sizes, and several members went through the Library looking for new and old projects and ideas for inspiration in planning future workshops and programs.
 At the close of the meeting we all enjoyed our lunches and shared in the communal  lentil/vegetable soup and desserts.

President's Report on the Calendar Year 2013
Our website, Newsletters and Notices continue to work very well under the web master ship of Pat Othen – many thanks!

Library – no purchases

The Guild presented the following monthly workshops:
January 19 – Mi’kmaq Quillwork with Cheryl Simon
February 16 – Film screening of “Black Mother, Black Daughter” at the Alderney Gate Library with Mrs. Edith Clayton’s family
March 17 – AGM + 25th Birthday Games (Mi’kmaw Birchbark Triangle and Ball)
April 20 – no Guild workshop.  We collaborated with The Glooscap Heritage Centre Wooden Flower workshop with David Muise from Bear River.  We offered $200.00 towards costs; we were not billed.   
April 27 and May 18 – Red Osier Dogwood collecting and weaving
June 15/July 20-21 – Acadian Root Basket workshop – 5 members!
August – no workshops
September 21-22 – Mi’kmaw Wine Caddy/Knitting Basket with Greg McEwan and Margaret Sloane – cancelled to low registration
October 19 – Mi’kmaw Birchbark Dish with Todd Labrador      
November 16 – Christmas Decorations – cancelled -low registration
November 15 – Christmas Decorations at the NSDCC Christmas market
November 24 - Advent Wreaths with Rhinhart Petersman – cancelled to low registration (no one – first time since the 1970s…)
December – no workshop

Field Trips:
April 27 – Tangled Gardens, Grand Pre, with a tour by member Iain Jack of Fernwood Plant Nursery as Beverly McClare was at a show.

October 12 – Harvest Baskets – Ross Farm Museum with 25th Anniversary Cake and Basket Cookies – many thanks to the staff!
Summer and Christmas Nova Scotia Designer Crafts Council Shows

March 24 – Paper Strip/Ribbon Mi’kmaw Baskets – Alderney Library
December 7 – Straw Angels – Christkindl Market, Alderney Market

Note – Registry of Joint Stock Society annual fees went up from $28.59 (2013) to $30.25 (2014). [$1.66]

The year 2013 ended with 80 members. (70 in 2012)

Thank you to all who volunteered to make our programs so successful.  I am concerned by the number of workshop cancellations and would appreciate member feedback. 

Film inquiries, book covers and tourism literature are respecting the Nova Scotian basket traditions – we played an important role in our programs and public demonstrations – you should be proud!

Respectfully submitted, Joleen Gordon, President
March 16, 2013 Annual General Meeting

Our Annual General Meeting took place over the noon hour break (noon to 1:00pm) of the AGM Workshop.  Several years ago, while on a road trip along the north shore of the Gaspe Peninsula, our President stopped at a Mi’kmaw craft shop.  The window was full of interesting objects one of which was a triangular piece of birchbark with a centre hole and a small wooden ball was attached with a cord to one corner.  What was it?  The shop was shut; she found later it was a game of enhancing hand-eye motor skills.  So our workshop today was to make our own version of this game.

President's Report on the Calendar Year 2012
Our website, Newsletters and Notices continue to work very well under the supervision of Pat Othen - many thanks!

We had a good year with a fantastic exhibition focused on our environment, plus 2012 being our 24th year and Earth Day's 42nd year, with demonstrations, workshops and a public talk.

The year 2012 ended with 70 members; down 5 from 2011.

Library - purchased NFB/DVD "Black Mother, Black Daughter"

The Guild presented the following Monthly Workshops:
January 21/29 - two Bark Cylinder workshops (JG)
February 6 - Bark Cylinder - cancelled - weather
March 17 - AGM + Mi'kmaw Quillwork with Cheryl Simon
March 29- April 29 - "Green Basketry" exhibition at the Craig Gallery, Alderney Landing, Dartmouth
May 5 - Beaded Paper Jewellery with Salyne Ting Eo
June-July-August - No classes
September 15+16 - Mi'kmaw Lidded Basket with raised-weave Periwinkle design with Greg McEwan and Margaret Sloane
October 20 - Short-cuts Reed Basket (Donna S./Pat O.)
November 24 - Twill-weave Reed Basket (Donna/Joleen G.)
November 25 - Advent Wreaths with Rhinhart Petersman
December 8 - Christmas Reed Ornaments (Donna/Pat/JG)

Field Trips - none
March 29-April 29 "GREEN Basketry" exhibition, Craig Gallery, Alderney Landing, Dartmouth
April 22 - Public Talk: "Baskets of Nova Scotia"
July 9-15"GREEN Basketry" Selections from the Craig Gallery exhibition, Scott Manor House, Bedford

January 28 - Saturday Farmers' Market, Alderney Landing
February 25 - Saturday Farmers' Market, Alderney Landing
March 27 - Saturday Farmers' Market, Alderney Landing
June 16 - Avondale Art Fair, Hants County
July 22 - Acadian Days, Grand Pre
July 22 - Nova Scotia Designer Crafts Council Summer Show
August 16 - Nantucket Basketmaking, Quaker House, Dartmouth
October 6 - Harvest Witherod Baskets - Ross Farm Museum
November 16 - Nova Scotia Designer Crafts Council Christmas Show

March 31 - Berry Box Lanterns - Saturday Farmers' Market, Alderney Landing
April 7 - Paper Strip/Ribbon Mi'kmaw Baskets - Saturday Farmers' Market, Alderney Landing
April 14 - Cattail Birds - Farmers' Market, Alderney Landing
December 1 - Straw Angels - Christkindlmarket, Alderney Landing
Thank you to all who volunteered to make our programs so successful.  The word is out and we have received several invitations for demonstrations/workshops which we will discuss later in the meeting.

Respectfully submitted,
Joleen Gordon, President
March 17, 2012 Annual General Meeting

Our Annual General Meeting took place over the noon hour break (noon to 1:00pm) of the AGM Workshop. We were fortunate to have had Mi'kmaq artist Cheryl Simon teaching us in two previous workshops working with porcupine quills and birchbark, replicating Mi'kmaq geometric and petroglyph designs. In this workshop we re-visited those techniques plus she introduced us to using quills to create different "fill patterns" in designs. Guild members donated hand-dyed porcupine quills and Lunenburg County birchbark for this event - many thanks to Edie, Clary and Monique.

President's Report on the Calendar Year 2011

Our website continues to work very well under the supervision of Pat Othen - many thanks!

We had a good year with good workshops, field trips, events and demonstrations some of which generated funds for our Green Basketry exhibition in 2012 and programming for our 25th anniversary in 2013.The year 2011 ended with 75 members; up 18 from 2010.

Library – we converted a VHS film of 7 Mi'kmaq films to DVD

The Guild presented the following workshops and events:
January 16 - Sandra Winter Estate basket sale
February 6 -AGM at the Caroline Gould exhibition at the NSCCD
February 20 - Mi'kmaq Quillwork with Cheryl Simon
March 12+13 - Willow Easter Baskets at NSCCD
April 10+30 - Spring Baskets with Donna Silvert
May 3,10,17 and 24 - Red Maple Baskets with Clara Gough
May 23 - Queen Victoria Birthday Basket with Joleen Gordon
No classes June-July-August
September 17+18 - Mi'kmaq Berry Basket with Greg McEwan
October 15 - Nocturne - Berry Box Lanterns - 300!
November 20 - Tamarack Geese + Advent wreaths with Rhinhart Petersman December 3 - Christmas Vine Angels

Field trips:
March 29 - Burgess Baskets, Newport Station, Hants County
June 7 - Porcupine quill collecting. Hwy #107

April 2 - J.D. Shatford Library. Hubbards, Art Attack Program
March 27 - Cole Harbour Library Art Attack Program
October 15 - 4th Nocturne Festival, NSCCD/Halifax Seaport Market where close to 300 lanterns were made, well over the 75 we contracted to make - it was a memorable magical night!

June 4 - Alderney Landing Farmer's Marker
July 22/23 and November 18/20 - Nova Scotia Designer Craft Council Summer and Christmas Markets
July 24 - Acadian Days at Grand Pre
August 18 - Quaker House Museum, Dartmouth
October 8 - We gave our annual demonstration at the Ross Farm Museum in New Ross, Lunenburg.
Thank you to all who volunteered. We have great fun making friends and making baskets!

Respectfully submitted,
Joleen Gordon, President

February 6, 2011 Annual General Meeting

Our Annual General Meeting was held Sunday February 6, 2011 from Noon to 1pm.
We met in the multipurpose room of the Nova Scotia Centre for Craft and Design ahead of Ursula Johnson’s Artist Talk at her Kloqowej (Star) exhibition. This gave members a chance to vote at our AGM, meet Ursula Johnson and see the beautiful baskets woven by her great-grandmother Caroline Gould and hear about her life in basketry.

President's Report on the Calendar Year 2010

This was a year of restructuring the Guild. Our new website is working very well under the supervision of Pat Othen - many thanks! Don and I would like to thank all of you for your wonderful support in the loss of our daughter Sarah last March - thank you so much.

The year 2010 ended with 57 members; 4 up from 2009.

Library - no additions

The Guild presented the following workshops and events:
January - Heart Ornaments - cancelled - low registration
February - Le Coeur fromage Basket - cancelled - low registration
March - AGM and Mi'kmaq Stars
No classes May - June- July- August
September - Mi'kmaq Berry Basket with Greg McEwan - cancelled
October - Black Baskets with Clara Gough (4 weeks)
November - Mi'kmaq Quillwork with Cheryl Simon
                  - Advent wreaths with Rhinhart Petersmann
December - Christmas Ornaments - 2 days

Out-of-Province instructor:  none

Exhibition:  none this year

Field trips:  none this year

July 23/25 and November 19/21 - Nova Scotia Designer Craft Council Summer and Christmas Markets.
October 9 - We gave our annual demonstration at the Ross Farm Museum in New Ross, Lunenburg .
November 20 - Kitchen Plastic Baskets - Alderney Landing Market in preparation for our 2012 Green Basketry exhibit.
Thanks to all who volunteered for the events. We have great fun making friends and making baskets!

Respectfully submitted,
Joleen Gordon, President
March 20, 2010 Annual General Meeting and Workshop

Mi'kmaq Ash StarAGM Morning Workshop
Anita P. began the morning by giving us a short talk about the research on traditional Mi'kmaq basketry and explained the significance of the 8 pointed star in Mi'kmaq lore. The group then cut damp ash strips with scissors to make the 8 spokes of the Mi'kmaq star and wove them together with sweet grass strands.  Everyone had a unique star when finished.  Anita pointed out that this weaving technique is the same as that used for the bottom and lid of a Mi'kmaq basket.  We all enjoyed the workshop and hopefully a few of the attendees will help teach these techniques to a group of Mi'kmaq grandmothers.

President's Report on the Calendar Year 2009

The year 2009 ended with 53 members; 2 down from 2008.

- 1 addition; total of 149 books, 7 videos.

The Guild presented the following workshops and events:

January - Paper Woven Hearts with Scott Robson
February - Brown Paper Basket Tote with Hannah Dunleavy
March - AGM and Paper Basket Variations
April - Easter Willow Basket and Cardboard Paper Tote
May - Field trip to Indian Brook to visit our Honorary Member Annie Paul and her wooden flowers and the Indian Brook School.
June - Garden Structures with Ankaret Dean of Ontario and  Reed basket workshop with Donna Manuel
July - Classic English Willow Trug - cancelled
August - Rush Hat and Basket Making with Hannah Dunleavy
September - Mi'kmaq style Bread Basket with Chief Greg McEwan
October - Mi'kmaq Basket with Patricia Dunnett in New Brunswick. Cancelled due to lack of interest
November - Paper Lace Christmas Cards with Hannah Dunleavy and Advent wreath with Rhinhart Petersmann
December - Paper Snowflakes with Scott Robson and Christmas reed Bells with Donna Silvert

Out-of-Province instructor: Ankaret Dean (June 2009) former editor of the Basketry Express. We gave the class in cooperation with members of various HRM garden clubs.

Exhibition: July 1-5 at the Scott Manor House, Bedford

Field trips:
February - Todd Labrador's birch bark canoe
March - Madeline's Flower Shop in Little Harbour - Mi'kmaq roses

March - Day long demonstration of Garlic baskets and Weaver Bird's Nests at Museum of Industry as part of their March Break program looking at man-made and birds/animal works.
July & November - Nova Scotia Designer Craft Council - Summer and Christmas Markets
August - Quaker House in Dartmouth
October - We gave our annual demonstration at the Ross Farm Museum in New Ross, Lunenburg

Thanks to all who volunteered for the events. We have great fun making friends and making baskets!

Respectfully submitted,
J. Gordon, President

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