Making a bender

New building skills

Been busy making benders over late autumn! This one’s cover has since been taken down but I think the frame is the real secret work of art.

Paul Klee once said a line is ‘a dot that went for a walk’. Building on this, string is a line in three dimensions, rope is simply yarn but big and a branch is just very stiff rope. I have found this understanding makes building benders very achievable.

A bender in this instance means a low, simple dwelling built from bent poles with a floor and a covering thrown over for protection from the elements. There are several sites with a more comprehensive history of benders and instructions on how to build your own bender available outside of this blog. Good luck and happy building! 💕

You can see that we have had tarps, hessian and carpets on the floor which has killed the grass, but we are going to leave it and see what impact this activity has made. There is a chance that the willow will sprout over spring, looking forward to seeing if I can create an living bender out of this frame!

In the bottom left corner is a prototype rocket stove I knocked up with local clay over two afternoons. The chimney is facing toward the wind, an issue I hadn’t considered when building it. Unfortunately, this means it can’t be used in a closed-up bender safely but as this is the first one I have ever made I guess I made it more for an understanding of rocket stoves in general.


Other sustainable living projects;

Cooking nettles

Land art

Seaweed foraging

Making preserves

About kellymarietheartist

Visual artist originally from Australia, travelling the world creating crocheted wearable art and functional textile pieces. Sustainable art and slow fashion made from recycled fabrics, wools and metal. Colourful. Psychedelic. Unique.
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