Wayside Willow

Chaz Friend

Wayside Willow Logo Original-06

Chaz Friend is Wayside Willow.

  I live on the Leicestershire/ Warwickshire border with my artistically tallented and lovely wife, my energetic, adorable 10 year old son, Jess our cuddly golden lab and Bedlington Terrier, Ruby

I have four adult children from my first marriage, who have enriched my life with 12 grandchildren.

I am inpired by the created world and love time out in the countryside, under trees, beside streams or beside the sea.


The Journey  

   I have taught in Primary schools for 24 years, working with all ages of children during that time.

  Teaching is delightfully rewarding career, bringing with it the privilege to be  a part of seeing children develop and grow under your care and nurture.

  In 2010 I was invited to do some work with my brother-in-law, Tom Hare, when he put a team together to work on 3 large scale willow and steel sculptural pieces that were bound for America.

   I really loved this experience and seemed to pick up the weaving technique quickly. It opened a creative door in me that had been shut for a very long time.

 In 2013 I lowered my hours to  3 days a week to give willow work more time and then at the end of that academic year left school employment to fully pursue  the wilow craft avenue.

 Since that time I have worked full time, building up my provision to both schools and other settings.

I have developed my basketry skills and run beginners classes in basket making along side adult courses in various making opportunities.  



 I lbelieve we are all created to be creative;  its a core part of our humanity. Some people never find that place inside them.

I know from experience that willow can help free that creative spark  in people who think of themselves as being  non-artistic.  

Come jourey with me to find that place of ignition.