Crafting Serenity: Pine Needle Basketry Workshop with Janis Goad

Janis Goad, a passionate adventurer and avid traveller, always looks for her next exciting experience. Her curiosity drives her to immerse herself in diverse cultures and visit breathtaking landscapes around the globe.

When she’s not physically travelling the world, Janis embarks on captivating mental journeys through the power of art. Art and meditation have an uncanny ability to transport her to the most enchanting places.

Once, I came across something interesting that said: Thoughts are like seeds; you can grow flowers, or you can grow weeds. Engaging in creative hobbies, such as crafting, designing, or writing, can have a profoundly positive impact on our mental well-being. These activities offer us a chance to escape the stresses of daily life and immerse ourselves in the joy of creation. Whether we’re crafting art, designing objects, or writing poetry, these pursuits can help us tap into our inner creativity and express our thoughts and emotions in a meaningful way. By channelling our energy into these creative outlets, we can experience a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment, which can lift our spirits and bring a more positive outlook on life.

Today’s lives are fast-paced and sometimes take us far from our goals and our wish to pleasure our creative selves.
Janis pursued her dreams of finding her place in life and making things happen. She moved from Ontario to Yellowknife and enjoyed rural life. Then, she lived in Asia, where she studied yoga and taught English to locals. After moving to Vancouver, she had her first taste of pine needle basketry. When the pandemic hit, she continued working as an English teacher but found that teaching online wasn’t for her. The lack of socialization and the challenges of social distancing made her job harder and less enjoyable than it used to be. Looking for a place to call home, she moved to Vankleek Hill.

Janis, a skilled yoga instructor, brings a sense of serenity to the Anglican Church of Vankleek Hill with her lessons. Her expertise in meditation techniques and her ability to integrate mind and body continue to attract individuals looking for a break from their daily lives. In addition to her yoga practice, Janis also enjoys spending her free time at the Creating Centre writing workshop and crafts groups at the Arbor Gallery.

One of her projects involves creating objects using corn husks. For example, she is working on making beautiful, colourful, and wearable hats entirely made from natural materials. She believes that working with these biodegradable materials reflects the circle of life. The decorative objects are designed to have a life cycle until they return to the Earth. Similar to other talented artists, Janis sees poetry everywhere she looks.

Another one of her cherished pastimes is basketry, as mentioned previously. The duration of completing a basket varies – it can take up to six weeks, depending on the size and complexity of the project. For instance, a small vase can be finished in as little as one day.

What does she love about basketry?
Janis’s love for basketry is palpable. She cherishes contact with nature, using natural fibres, and the freedom to harvest her materials. For her, basketry is a deeply mindful craft where hand-eye coordination and a peaceful mind converge to create stunning decorative and functional objects. It’s not just about the end product but the entire process she finds truly fulfilling.
Pine needle basketry making requires only a few elements—a conventional needle, pine needles, and thread, making it an uncomplicated hobby to pursue. The materials can be taken anywhere, and just like knitting, you can work on your projects while in the company of others.

Another good thing about using pine needles is that they are soft, gentle on the hands, non-toxic, and easy to manipulate. And if that’s not enough, their long-lasting smell is very satisfying.

If you want to learn a new craft, Janis’s pine needle basketry workshop in Vankleek Hill is coming soon. You can check the following information and contact here to know more:

The workshop will be held on Sunday, July 7th, from 10 am to 3 pm at the Art and Dream Studio in Vankleek Hill. The cost is $100 per person and includes all materials. Children over eight can attend with a parent for $120 per family.

During Janis Goad’s pine needle basketry workshop, you will embark on a journey to create a one-of-a-kind basket from scratch. An experienced instructor, Janis, will supply all the necessary materials, including pine needles and thread. You will learn the art of preparing the pine needles, coiling them, and stitching them together to craft a unique and functional basket, all under Janis’s expert guidance.

This is a rare opportunity to learn a new skill, unwind, and create something beautiful. With limited spaces available, we encourage you to secure your spot at the workshop soon!

You can register for the workshop by messaging Janis at her email, [email protected] or calling her at 250-299-1343. You can also find more information about the work on her Facebook page: