Above: David Hembrow busy basketmaking in Cambridge before moving to the Netherlands, Below: willow growing at a supplier in Somerset.
Exhibitor Profile: David Hembrow
I'm English and was taught basketmaking by my father, who was also a basketmaker. We relocated to Assen in the Netherlands because conditions are so good for cycling here. My family involvement in basket making goes back at least 4 generations. My father told me of his grandfather making baskets. My grandfather lived his entire life in Somerset, and sold his baskets at the roadside.
My parents took my immediate family as far afield as New Zealand to make baskets. We lived in both Pokeno and Manurewa, and we had craft shops in both these places (called "Quantock Gifts") which sold both my parent's produce and that of other craftspeople. My parents have always made a wide range of different baskets. Amongst the specials my father made while we were in New Zealand was the bodywork for a Chater Lea Cycle-car. After 9 years, we returned to the UK and my parents ran a craft shop in Highbridge, Somerset, which again sold their own produce and that of other craftspeople. Sadly my father died unexpectedly in March 2009, but my mother still reseats chairs and makes small baskets.
As a child, I helped by "picking" some of my father's work. This is the process of removing the many loose ends which remain on a basket once it has been completed. I also sometimes made small baskets for sale, which earnt some pocket money. I was always surrounded by baskets and other crafts, so I suppose it was inevitable that after many years of pursuing a career in software development (specialising in embedded software, real time, device drivers), I switched to basket making. If you are interested in any kind of basket, please let me know. I can make most things to customer's requirements.
David is also responsible for Dutch Bikes Bits, a Cyclorama featured retailer whose profile may be seen in our Retailers listing - here.
Visit this exhibitor's website: http://hembrow.eu/