Woven Artwork Care
You've just made an important investment in art that can be treasured for generations with minimal effort on your part and just a bit of common sense. Ancient scrolls, textiles, even thousand-year-old sandals have been discovered extraordinarily well-preserved around the world in dry caves and ruins. Vintage and antique Native American baskets with mellow, beautiful patinas have survived being bought and sold and subjected to myriad environments, and their value continues to increase.
Care for your new Wounaan Hösig Di as you would any fine textile or fiber art, such as weavings, rugs, tapestries, wall hangings, even upholstery. The beauty of handmade works of art is that each piece is unique, possessing the characteristics that assure its collector that it is not a machined, mass-produced object. Hösig Di are stitched over many months and years from natural palm fibers and organic/vegetal dyes. Display them proudly away from windows and not beneath a skylight. The ultra-violet rays of direct sun and strong light fade the saturated natural dyes in textile and fiber art and can even damage the fibers themselves, weakening the structure, and, thereby diminishing the value, of your fine art.
If your Hösig Di resides with you in the desert Southwest or other dry environments, you may feel better occasionally misting it (as often done to wicker or rattan) inside with distilled or non-chlorinated tap water. Using a paper towel, gently pat any excess moisture from the interior. In this way, you may even “re-shape” a tilting basket whose fibers have “loosened” slightly. The interior should feel somewhat damp, but not wet. On a spotless smooth, level surface, “re-seat” your artwork by encircling the rim with both hands (clean) and exerting very gentle pressure against the shoulder opposite the direction of the lean. Once it is seated erect, if you wish, insert a glass jar with a little weight to it, centering it by looking directly down into the basket. The diameter of the jar should be the same size as or slightly smaller than the diameter of the inside bottom of the basket.
If the basket has a concave bottom, do not use a weight. Permit to dry overnight, or longer and then remove the jar. Be sure that all moisture and condensation under the jar also evaporates as it dries level. Surprisingly, too-much moisture is a greater enemy of your artwork than dryness. Saturating the foundational inner core, or coils, can result in the outer, thinner wrapping stitches popping, as these dry far more rapidly than the swollen coil. Too much moisture can also leave fine objects susceptible to mold and mildew.