The lack of primary resources obliged the Gomerans to extract maximum use from local materials. Basketry is a good example of such initiative. Baskets were mainly made from palm tree leaves but also cane and wicker, and were used for the conservation and transport of products. A great variety of baskets exist, shaped and sized according to their use.
There are baskets for domestic use, for sowing crops, carrying manure or vegetation for the animals, carrying stones or earth for construction of houses and dry stone walls, and for transporting loads on the backs of farm animals. Basketry was mainly men’s work, women worked more with smaller crafts made from more flexible materials.
The local production of textiles began with European colonization. Textiles were made from silk and linen (of which no examples survive) and from wool. The traditional process of spinning wool is still practiced. Starting with the shearing of sheep in the spring, the wool is then spun using a wooden spindle and a cane distaff. Next skeins are made using a X-shaped implement, and finally balls are rolled onto a reel. Cloth is produced by needle or on a loom. In La Gomera, looms were small and crude, made from wood with numerous parts.
Cloth was produced to provide the neighbourhood with essential clothing. Today, cloths and blankets are still produced. Rag rugs, made by weaving cotton thread and strips of cloth (or sometimes old disused rags), have become one of the most important textiles on La Gomera. They come in a great range of colours and are used as rugs, to make bedspreads, etc.