web analytics

Man makes trug

The Sussex trug, Wikipedia tells me

is a wooden basket. It is made from a handle and rim of coppiced sweet chestnut wood which is hand-cleft then shaved using a drawknife. The body of the trug is made of five or seven thin boards of cricket bat willow, also hand-shaved with a drawknife. They may have originated in Sussex because of the abundance of chestnut coppice and willows found on the marshes. Nails or pins used are usually copper, to avoid rust.

Shapes and sizes became standardised, the most well-known shape being the “common or garden” trug ranging in volume from one pint to a bushel. However, there is a diverse range of traditional trugs from garden and oval trugs to the more specialised “large log” and “walking stick” trugs.

There is written evidence of trug making locally going back to the 15th C, so who knows how long it’s been going on really.

We haven’t got one — they’re frightfully expensive — but I’m told a good trug can hold water. There are at least two shops still making them. We know because we pass them occasionally; they’re a couple of miles apart.

I don’t know if this guy is a freelance trug monger, but it’s a shot from one of the country fairs earlier this month. I didn’t look at his prices.


Comment from Durnedyankee
Time: September 19, 2019, 1:41 am

Once watched a barrel maker, and wagon wheel maker at a reenactment.

just amazing. I love that kind of stuff.

Comment from drew458
Time: September 19, 2019, 2:58 am

Again the word coppice sneaks into your blog. Next post will probably mention pollard. Proud to say I’ve learned both of these terms from reading sweasel dot com.

I like the odd little hammer he’s using. Wonder if it’s a special trugging hammer?

You can get a medium Sussex made trug for £16.95. It may be birch, which is an “approved” kind of wood over there.

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: September 19, 2019, 1:41 pm

Aren’t they beautiful. Highly prized as heirlooms, I suppose.

Comment from DurnedYankee
Time: September 19, 2019, 7:44 pm

Freelance Trug Monger.

Sounds like someone you’d expect find in Witcher, only not selling “baskets”.

Write a comment

(as if I cared)

(yeah. I'm going to write)

(oooo! you have a website?)

Beware: more than one link in a comment is apt to earn you a trip to the spam filter, where you will remain -- cold, frightened and alone -- until I remember to clean the trap. But, hey, without Akismet, we'd be up to our asses in...well, ass porn, mostly.

<< carry me back to ol' virginny