Annemarie is a basket-maker based in East Sussex, UK and forms part of John Smedley’s collective of British craftsmen in celebration of their 235th anniversary as the oldest manufacturing factory in the world.
Together they will be showcasing their collective crafts via retail windows, consumer workshops, special product launches and exhibitions throughout 2019 and 2020.
She started to pursue basket making as a craft after studying the craft at City Lit in London, which is where she now teaches. In addition to teaching, she makes and sells both domestic baskets and sculptural work internationally.
“When clients receive work, they often tell me of the joy that my pieces bring to their homes. They also comment on the beautiful smell of a newly woven willow basket. I feel like people really want pieces that they handle, that become parts of their everyday lives.”
With support from QEST, Annemarie has arranged to visit workshops in the UK and France to develop advanced skills including scalloming and fitching, and to learn two baskets, Cyntell and Perigord, to an excellent standard.
Annemarie mainly works with willow and coppiced wood; she grows about 20 different types of willow for her own basket-making. Annemarie insists she feels like this career and industry chose her. The first time she made a basket she couldn’t quite get enough of it and that’s when she had the strong feeling that this is the work she should be doing.
To find out more about Annemarie O’Sullivan and her craft click here.