Net Bags

knotted netting

May 20 (Saturday)



Venue: open air woodland setting in a 70 acre ancient coppiced wood on a family-run working  farm: peaceful and beautiful Dernwood Farm Nr Heathfield, East Sussex.

Making a netted bag is one of the best uses for natural cordage, and there’s archaeological evidence that our ancient hunter-gatherer ancestors did the same. If you’ve ever had a go at making cordage you’ll know what a satisfying experience that is. But people often wonder what to then use it for.

This is a new netting course for 2023, which builds well on knowledge gained on Looped Rush Bags course. It is still knotless netting, but it’s an intersting variation on the standard looping technique, and the start is quite different.

You’ll learn how to use a netting needle, just as our distant ancestors would have done, to make a rectangular bag from natural, ready-made twine. Your bag will be perfect for carrying your essentails- phone, card, keys, a book.  Or for foraging trips for nuts, compass etc.

Looping/netting becomes an enjoyably rhythmical and meditative activity as you settle in to the technique; it’s a magical way to make a container with a relatively small amount of a simple material.

Suitability: this course is suitable for people who have some experience with crafts using knotting / looping etc (like crochet, knitting). If you have only a little experience you’re still very welcome, just bear in mind that you may make a smaller bag in the time.
Groups are kept small to allow for individual attention.

If you’d like to learn how to make string (which is not covered on the Net Bags day), check out the Wild Cordage courses in June and July. The Looped Rush Bags day-long course teaches another type of looped netting, working with a native plant.

knotted netting
looped netting cordage

A simple but hearty lunch is provided, we’ll have have a kettle on the camp fire, plus a huge tarp on hand for cover in case we need it. I aim to offer you a satisfying learning experience as well as an enjoyable time away from it all. To support you in getting the most from the day, we’ll connect to the woodland surroundings through a short and simple, guided mindfulness-based practice.

Being absorbed in such a beautiful activity in a beautiful place was very enriching and exactly what I needed. Thank you for making it so. JB, Sussex

Accommodation: camping is available at the farm venue and full details about this will be sent to you when you book on the course. The farm also has glamping options- cosy bell tents and cabins with wood-burners. The cost of staying at the farm isn’t included in the cost of the course. Read more about onsite and offsite accommodation options.

You can read FAQs here.

See you in the woods!

Featured in the Guardian lifestyle section. National Geographic & Toyota put Native Hands in their top 125 UK adventures.