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Blog

Birch Bark Boxes

jarrod

This past weekend I treated myself to taking a class offered at North House Folk School and it was well worth it. I have been making boxes for a few years, but self taught from a few antiques and a rare out of print Norwegian book a friend had showed me once. In taking this class I was looking for a more direct link to my Swedish ancestry and the birch bark traditions there. The class was taught by Ramon Persson a folk art instructor and craftsman from Sweden.  Ramon was is in Minnesota for a few weeks teaching classes in Grand Marias and Scandia. In this class we made Birch bark Boxes or Naverburkar.  I learned a lot of great tricks from Ramon, something you get when learning from someone who has a lot of experience.  The class was fairly laid back and we had time to make a couple boxes. The first box was practice then we moved on to a bigger box. We decorated these with stamped designs and paint. This is what I love the most with Ramon's approach. The paint is hand mixed from natural pigments and pure linseed oil and once on the bark, the grain and beauty really comes out. I had so much fun that I didn't take a single photo while in class, sorry. But here are some from the class and one I made yesterday. I will be making lot's more of these and I am very excited to have learned new techniques. I am inspired.