Vintage... of wicker. In Iza, it is a hot time now (PHOTO)
It seems like every household in Iza these first days of October are filled with flexible wicker - brown, green, gold, white...
In the village, which is famous as the capital of wicker weaving - Iza in Khust district of Transcarpathian region - it is a very important time now. At the end of September, they start harvesting wicker - the material for products that will be made in winter.
According to Mr. Ilko, his family will store in the pantry at least five tonnes of wicker. Along with wicker harvesting, he weaves furniture. He says: "Every family has its own methods and secrets. My dad taught me, and his grandfather taught him."
Wicker harvesting is more difficult than it seems. Having gathered wicker (and in Iza and neighboring villages, they plant and then gather it as any other crop), they boil it (about two hours in boiling water), then clean in several stages (on machines and manually) and dry it. Thus, rods become refined, light, sometimes almost white and acquire necessary flexibility and strength. After that wicker is often split into three parts, and that rods are then used to weave baskets.
Of course, not only baskets are made in Iza. They weave almost anything they can imagine, from mirror frames to furniture sets.
Of course, the best trade in Iza is before Easter, when all need baskets. But the hardest work is right now.
People here are proud of their unique work. And are not too distracted by guests. Because, it is busy time - time to store, harvest wicker for winter. This harvest, though not edible, feeds hardworking villagers for a whole year...