26 September 2007

Simple Requests

I think I may have discovered where I get my Obsessive Compulsive tendencies. And I come by them honestly.

Earlier this month I posted a photo on the blog in a post describing our stop in Oslo while on a Baltic Cruise. The photo is of a birchpark woven item I now know to be properly referred to as a packsack.

As part of of the post I mentioned I saw these around Oslo and really wanted to buy one, but couldn't find a place that sold them. I requested that if anyone had information about where I could get one could they let me know. I then jokingly suggested that if nothing else, perhaps my mother could make one for me.

I then forgot all about it.

Yesterday I received an e-mail from The Mother. Unbeknowst to me, she had been experimenting with different ways to make the packsack and wanted to know my preference regarding it. She also wanted more information about what it is and where exactly it comes from.

I did some research and found that it is best known among the Sami people, an indigenous group who live in the far north of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. Further research revealed that there is a man in Northern Minnesota who works with birchbark and knows how to make these things.

The Mother has already contacted this individual. He has a book that will be published in October that describes birchpark plaiting. He is sending The Mother some birchbark so she can practice splitting it and working with it. He will next be giving a class on plaiting in March, which The Mother intends to take. And has even invited her up to Northern Minnesota next June when the harvesting of the birchbark happens so she can learn that process as well.

It was just a simple request!


Midsummer night's knitter said...

Wow - you'll be a bit wary of making a simple request any time soon ;0)

Anonymous said...

I would think that if you make fun of a wonderful mother she might stop doing things for you.

The Big Finn said...

I must have missed your previous blog about the packsack, but I can say that Joulu Pukki (Santa Claus in Finnish) always wore one of these things on his back when he came to visit my sister and I when we were little.
I'm not sure what it's called in Finnish. I'll have to ask my mom and dad what it's called in Finnish.

Global Librarian said...

I'm not laughing AT my mother. I'm laughing WITH my mother!

Anonymous said...

I dunno, sounded a little condensending.

Isokisu said...

Moe !!!

Just passing by, but my boyfriend makes those things. In finnish it is called a "kontti", which is a sort of (old) general name for a carrying container.

It is a durable thing to have and also very ecological and recyclable. You should shower it with a hot water by couple of times of the year. It can be washed with liquid soaps too.

Best wishes,