|About the Lobster Float-Rope Basket project|
This whole project began over a casual meeting in Somesville, Maine between a lobster fisherman (Eric), a basket weaver (Richard), a retailer (Sue), and an administrative pro (Heather). Totally spontaneous and unplanned - an extended family getting together for dinner. Grandparents, children, grandchildren !
Many of us are aware of the government ban on the use of floating rope (float rope) in the lower part of lobster-trap gear to Save the Whales. Several companies have used this cast-off rope to make door mats. Door mats are a good thing. But a door mat is, after all is said and done, a door mat.
So Richard and Eric went off to Eric's shop to see what kind of a basket could be made out of Eric's surplus float rope. And of course, Elizabeth was there to help: "Grampy, are you taking it apart again?"
That first basket was a keeper, if not quite a Nobel-prize winner!
And thus the Float-Rope Basket Project was born.
The project has grown into a true community effort operating out of a boathouse on the shore of Little Cranberry Island:
• Cast-off float rope is proveded by lobster fishermen (and women) living in the coastal and island communities of Maine.
• The weaving effort to create the baskets is headed by Richard. Each is a one-of-a-kind creation.
• There is an effort to create and manage a retail network to sell the baskets.
• There is an administrative activity to hold all the parts together.
The float-rope baskets are incredible, hand-made works of art, using the basket-making techniques of the Native Americans in the state of Maine.
And it is win-win: keep discarded lobster-trap rope out of the landfills or burn-piles while creating beautiful baskets !
Mark Twain said it thus: If you are the kind of person who likes this sort of thing, you are going to LOVE this !!