A Bundle of Mountain Grape Fiber: Basket Making Material
early twentieth century
as shown: 4" x 20" x 5", 10 cm x 51 cm x 12.5 cm
approximate weight: 9 oz., 255 grams
In old Japan baskets were often made using fibers that were foraged for: the bark of the mountain grape is one of those well-used basket making fibers and offered here is a shank of mountain grape bark which is a beautiful object in and of itself.
Mountain grape bark is known for its flexibility and durability. It is said that even old baskets are still "fresh": apparently if an older basket becomes misshapen from mishandling or too much use, it can be easily molded back to its original shape by wetting the fibers and re-setting the basket.
It is a beautiful raw fiber with a rich, dark brown color and with great tensile strength.