About us

Ko Koenigstein tōku maunga. Ko Elbe tōku awa. Ko North Sea tōku moana. Ko Tiamana tōku iwi. Ko Saxony tōku rohe. Ko Dresden tōku wahi noho. Ko Saxon tōku hapu. Ko Geoffrey Baker tōku tāne. Ko Ngapuhi tōna iwi. Ko Ngati Rangi rāua ko Te Hikutu tōna hapu. Ko Ngawha tōna marae. Ko Rita tōku ingoa. Kahore aku tamariki.

My name is Rita Baker, originally from Dresden/Germany – together with my husband Geoffrey of Ngapuhi, Ngati Rangi and Te Hikutu descent we started Flaxworx.co.nz.

After 10 months of full time study at UNITEC in Auckland, I graduated with a “Certificate in traditional and contemporary Maori Weaving” in November 2007. Geoffrey and his whanau supported me along the way and have since also taken on the “raranga bug”. Since then we have been attending various Weavers Wananga around the country (including the National ones that are held every two years) to increase our knowledge and to meet other weavers.

We have also been involved in various national and international weaving projects as part of a larger group of weavers including Karapiro World Rowing Champs, Wahakura projects around the country, United Nations Tukutuku project, National Weavers Raranga Exhibition at Waikato Museum to name but a few.

The most recent international “project” was the attendance at the invitation-only World Wicker and Weaving Festival in 2019 in Poland, at which I represented New Zealand and received a commendation for my sent in work of the “3 kete of knowledge” that is now touring Europe.

Our other passions include Photography (we try to outdo each other on that front), the outdoors, history and travelling.

We are members of Te Roopu Raranga Whatu O Aotearoa and follow traditional Maori tikanga (customs) when creating our pieces of art.

At this point, we would also like to acknowledge some of our tutors. Foremost Whaea Judy Robson-Deane and Whaea Te Orihau Te Tai who not only thought us weaving but have been a big part of my/our “growing up” in the Maori World. We also like to mention Whaea Ann Uerata who inspired us to start this journey in the first place (and was my very first tutor) and Erangi Brodie who is always there for me when I need advice in life. I could not have learnt so much about Maori culture, customs, and art without these dear friends – despite marrying into a rather large whanau as well.

We strive to keep this old art alive and share our knowledge as our tutors encouraged us to do. However, learning from other cultures around the world is a big part of our weaving journey as well.

Thank you for stopping by and now let us take you along on this journey with us.

Nō reira, tēnā koutou, kia ora anō tātou.

Kia Ora, Thank you, Danke! ~ Rita & Geoffrey Baker x

“If you want to relax, watch the clouds pass by and enjoy being creative out of doors then flax weaving is the perfect medium for you. It rejuvenates the mind and soul…”