My mania for pine needle weaving that started in Florida at Christmas continued over spring break in San Diego. I love pines, but had never thought of them as useful trees until a friend mentioned that her mom had always harvested pine nuts from the pines in her neighborhood in San Francisco. I’m not sure where it was I thought pine nuts came from before that, but afterwards I got really in to gleaning the pine nuts dropped by these beautiful giants. It’s a challenge to crack them (we use a hammer) but rewarding and delicious.
Pine needle weaving is also laborious, as the baskets are stitched together with raffia, but I’m pretty happy with the functionality of the coasters . They don’t slip, are absorbent, and they smell like the pine tree on the street I grew up on that gave the needles. My technique is still a bit sloppy, and the result does look tidier if you use embroidery floss instead of raffia…. But I like the rustic look. Hoorah for pines.