Have you ever wondered how to care for your own flax bush?

As always when working with a living material - collecting and caring is where it all starts - but wait - there is a correct way of doing this of course.

Even if you are not Maori you should follow simple rules or tikanga when working with our natural materials. For starters we never harvest in the dark or when it is raining or when the plant is in flower. We also never harvest when we have our wahine mate (menstruation). There are some other things we need to think about to such as, never burn harakeke (Flax) or put it into the household rubbish.

In some areas we would put the offcuts back to the plant - in other areas this is not what the council want you to do - best check with your local iwi, other weavers and the council if you harvest on public land. Speaking of which - you should always ask for permission (from the local authorities or Iwi ) before harvesting.

These are just a few of the things a responsible weaver has to think about when working with Harakeke. Please feel free to contact us for further information.

Now new - a short video that also takes you through the process of harvesting: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PzRgx_t_am8 and also how to prepare flax for weaving https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4cn7Cc-hJQQ

 

 

 

 

Karakia (prayer) some of us say before harvesting to acknowledge the gift we are about to receive:

Te Harakeke, Te Korari

Nga taonga whakarere iho

O te Rangi. O te Whenua. O nga Tupuna.

Homai he oranga mo matou

Tihei mauri ora



a typical Pa Harakeke - many different weaving varieties (for different purposes)
 
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© All pictures, content, designs are copyright by Rita Baker. All rights reserved.  It is not allowed to use any photos of artwork, data and other information from this site without permission from www.flaxworx.co.nz.

  Please note: I do not claim copyright to any of the patterns used in my artwork - these are universally accessible through numerous publications.