Honoring the Ancient Fibersheds Blog


In planning for the upcoming Spiritweavers Gathering (where I am planning on helping Bethany Ridenauer teach a class on braintanning rabbit furs),  I just found this old Fibershed blog from 2011 called   Honoring the Ancient Fibersheds.

bethany-ringing-hide

It’s from a braintanning class in Bolinas where  Bethany was helping out and has some incredible photographs of the whole process. Check it out:)

 

 

 

Hand Drill Friction Firemaking Video

Check out this fun video of a recent Friction Firemaking Class at
Occidental Arts & Ecology Center in Occidental, CA.

This morning Intro to Paleotechnology program with Tamara Wilder is part of their 2 week long Permaculture Design Course which happens 3 times each year (Spring, Summer & Fall) and which includes an overview discussion, soapstone beadmaking, stringmaking & firemaking hands-on experience.

INTERESTED IN LEARNING MORE? 

OAEC PDC Registration Information.

A similar Stringmaking & Firemaking program is also part of the Roots of Herbalism / Foundations in Health Course at California School of Herbal Studies.

Friction firemaking is also a core element in Tamara’s Ancient Living Skills School Programs.

About Leg Rolled Cordage, and Why You Should Learn it.

By Steven Edholm

For many years, Tamara and I would teach leg rolling at our classes and at various primitive skills events.  We were real excited about it and started to see the usual hand twisting taught by most books and  instructors at the time, as sort of grade school level cordage making.  Leg rolling was slow to catch on for some reason, but it now seems to be more common, as it should be.  This short post is about leg rolling as compared to some other methods, and why is it worth learning, even if you don’t use it all the time.

ta

Tamara demonstrating leg rolling cordage and net making at the Oregon Country Fair

For making cordage without any props or gizmos, leg rolling is the worldwide norm.  It may have been slow to catch on in the primitive skills scene, but it seems almost universal among traditional cultures.  Leg rolling is common because it’s fast.  The cord is rolled on the thigh or calf with the flat palm, usually in an up and then down motion. With a little set up, a push down the thigh with the flat hand, and a pull back up the thigh, you’ll usually have 5 to 6 inches of cordage or so. (more…)

Charcoal production and agave roasting

Some paleotechnics followers will probably  be interested in this turkeysong post about making charcoal for biochar in a simple pit, and then using the residual heat for roasting agave leaves to extract the fibers.

wood in pit burning before and afterroasted agave leavesagave fibers

Better Sticks, Staves, Shafts and Withes: finding and encouraging straighter shoots

hand drill shafts lined up on table

Mule Fat hand drill shafts

By: Steven Edholm

Need straighter, longer, or more evenly tapered sticks?  Who doesn’t?  It’s not always easy to find a nice stick when you need one.  We might have plans for certain types of sticks, but nature has priorities other than providing us with them, and doesn’t necessarily have the same criteria for “better sticks” as we do.  Knowing where to look for straight wood, and how to manage plants for the production of such, is essential knowledge in the paleo arts.  Now that it’s winter, it’s time to harvest twigs and sticks for our baskets and hand drills and things like that, so I thought a post on the subject would be appropriate.

Many basketry styles require long  and relatively straight materials that are difficult to find a naturally occuring growth.

Many basketry styles require long and relatively straight materials that are difficult to find as naturally occurring growth.

What we’re looking for:  More uniform than average twigs, sticks and staves find many uses.  Arrows, hoops, spears, hand drill shafts, basketry elements and bowstaves are some classic examples.  There are several characteristics that we are commonly looking for in sticks for making stuff: (more…)