May Your Life Be Like A Basket...Useful...Bountiful...Beautiful...

Basketmaster's Weavings is about my passions, much of which revolves around basket weaving. I weave with reed and I love teaching others to weave. Many of the patterns and styles that I show in the blog are geared to the beginning weaver, or even the brand new weaver. If you have been thinking about wanting to learn to weave, then this blog is for you. Throughout the blog and videos I take you step by step through each and every process of weaving. I want you to be successful in weaving the very first time you try. For the intermediate and advanced weaver, my wish is that you take ideas that I show, mix them up a bit, and incorporate them into your own beautiful creations.

Happy Weaving and Baskets of Blessings to all my visitors,

Nancy

You may find my YouTube Videos Here.

Listen to Basketmaster's Making our Home a Haven Podcast.



Monday, December 29, 2008

January 2009 Newsletter--Valentine Basket Class


Basketmaster’s Weavings
January 2009 Newsletter, Issue 3

Dear Friends,

Happy New Year!!! I hope each of you had a wonderful Christmas and that you are perhaps still getting to enjoy a few days off until January and enjoying having the children home for their Christmas break. We made gingerbread houses, cookies and too many candies. Most importantly we got to spend a beautiful Christmas Eve with family and at a church service in the Phoenix area with Mike’s parents. Surprisingly it was unseasonably cold for Phoenix at this time of the year.

Are you planning your New Year’s Resolutions or goals? My goal or resolution this year is, “Keep ahead of the game.” It is similar to the scout motto, “Be Prepared.” I want to keep ahead of the game in all areas of my life with everything from basket weaving to menu planning, to planning for holidays, vacations, and school activities. I don’t like having my day planned out and discover at the last minute that I need an ingredient from the store to make the evening meal or that my children need something at the last minute to finish a project that is ‘due tomorrow’. I know I won’t achieve this 100% of the time, but this is something I am striving towards. The ultimate goal from doing this is to help promote “Peace In Our Home.”

So, in preparation for Valentine’s Day, the January kit of the month is a round Valentine basket. This is a great basket to fill with cookies or chocolates to give to your special Valentine. The curls on the front are made from reed and we will be making those in class as well. Your color choices will be pink or red. When signing up for class this month, be sure to indicate if you want a pink or red basket. The picture above is in red. This is a beginner basket so no weaving experience is necessary. Cost of the class is $25 and this includes all weaving material needed to weave one basket. Additional kits are $10 and again you have your choice of pink or red colors.

As always, I’m not someone who likes to send attachments with my e-mails so please look at my blog to view the picture of this basket. The link to my blog is below. Just click on it.
January Class Schedule and Kit of the Month

The approximate finished size is 8” in diameter and 4” high.
Class Dates and Times
Saturday, January 3, 9:30 am– 1:00 pm
Friday, January 9, 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Friday, January 16, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm
Thursday, January 22, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Again, I provide all the weaving material. What you need to bring are the following:
Tape measure
Dish pan or large bucket to hold water
Old kitchen scissors
Old bath towel
A dozen or so spring type clothespins
A small flat blade screw driver
A great attitude and a smile on your face ;- )
Please wear old clothing to class

Class size is limited. Please call or e-mail me early so I may reserve your spot. Reservations are taken on a first come first serve basis. I will form a waiting list as needed. At this time, all classes are held in my home in Cabezon, 5 minutes west of St. Thomas Aquinas church. I will send all students specific directions.

Question of the month:
Nancy, You weave with a material called Reed. What is it and where does it come from?
Answer: Reed is in the bamboo family. It is grown in tropical rain forests in coils on the ground. I have read where it can grow up to three feet in one day! It is harvested and stripped of its bark. The bark is called Cane and cane may be a more familiar product to you as it is used in making seats for stools and in other items. The inner portion of the plant is reed. Once the cane is stripped from the outside it is processed into different sizes and shapes that we use in weaving.

Please always remember, that if I’ve failed to mention something in this newsletter that you have a question about, just call or send me an e-mail and I’ll get right back to you with an answer. As I told you last month, I love weaving and I look forward to sharing my joy and enthusiasm of it with you. Here is my contact information:

e-mail: basketmaster_nancy@yahoo.com
blog: http://basketmasterweavings.blogspot.com/

Again, Happy New Year and I hope some of your resolutions this year are to spend some time relaxing, learning and being productive. All of which can be accomplished with basket weaving!

Baskets of Blessings!

Nancy

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Merry Christmas


Dear Weavers,


As Christmas has been fast approaching it is now time for me to devote my full attention to family, friends and all the activities surrounding the true reason for the season. I will be putting my January newsletter on the blog sometime between Christmas and New Years so be sure to look for it then. You can always subscribe to my blog by clicking on the RSS feed link on the sidebar here and will then get automatic notifications when I update my blog.
Just like Christ came to us on earth I pray that he has come to all of your hearts and that you are experiencing his unending love to share with everyone. I wish you a very blessed Merry Christmas.
Love,
Nancy






Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Technique/Tip Tuesday--Take Care of our Hands

My hands can get so dry this time of year and having them in reed water does not help. Here is a simple tip to help keep our basket weaving hands soft. When you put water in your bucket to soak your reed, just put a small squirt of inexpensive hair conditioner into the water and swish it around. When I say a small squirt, I mean about a marble size amount of conditioner to about 2 gallons of water. I keep a sample size bottle of hair conditioner in with my basket weaving tools at all time. This will not hurt the reed and will help keep your hands pretty during the holidays and throughout the winter season.
Happy Weaving!
Love,
Nancy

Friday, December 12, 2008

Victorian Christmas Sleigh


I love this basket. Don't I say that about all my baskets? The title of this pattern is "Victorian Christmas Sleigh". It is an advanced basket that I wove from a pattern written by Mary Skillings. I even taught this as a class several years ago to students who had been weaving with me for a while. The runners are #7 round reed. The jingle bells on the loops add a sweet touch to ring in that Santa is coming. This year I have it sitting up above my kitchen cabinets and it just makes me smile every time I see it.

Enjoy!

Love,

Nancy

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Kelly McCausey and Mom Masterminds -- Thank You!!!


Dear Friends,
Merry Christmas Greetings to all of you! I received a wonderful Christmas present yesterday and want to share my news.
As you know from listening to me that I've been focused and dedicated on taking my basket weaving business to the next level. Honestly, when people think of basket weaving, I want people to think of me along with other great weavers such as Grace Kabel. To achieve this I need to learn and do many things such as write a book, market basket weaving, learn about advertising and so forth. With a background as a registered nurse, all details regarding business and publishing are new to me and I am learning. I've taken some small business courses, reading everything I can get my hands on and have listened to some great podcasts. One of my very favorite podcasts and website is http://www.wahmtalkradio.com/
This is run by Kelly McCausey who is honest, good natured and as kind as they come. Now if it sounds familiar to you, it is because I've mentioned her before as I was a guest on podcast #245.
She has seriously taught, inspired and motivated me to move forward with my venture, my dream. I have a huge thank you that I am sending her way because she is out there gifting work at home moms some incredible things that they need to help their businesses. She just put it out there and asked what we all wanted. It was completely open ended. Everyone had different needs so her list was a mile long, but she used her resources and to my knowledge has basically been able to get each mom what she asked for. Honestly, I'm not one to ask for gifts, but I did put it out there that I would like a year subscription to her Mom Mastermind website. http://www.mommasterminds.com/ I've heard such great things about this site that it is FULL of information for the work at home mommy. Well, not only did she give me a year subscription, she gave me a LIFETIME subscription. Can you believe that? My jaw dropped when I saw that. I've had a chance to spend a little time around the site and yes it is full of information that will help me on my business journey. So Kelly McCausey, Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I will never forget your kindness so baskets of blessings to you!
Love,
Nancy

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Technique/Tip Tuesday - Basket Weaving Tips


There are times when round reed needs to be bent and it can be very frustrating to have a piece of round reed snap in half. A simple solution to keep this from happening is to have in your tool kit a needle nose pliers. When needing a crisp bend in the round reed, pinch it with the pliers first and then bend the reed. This virtually eliminates the risk of the reed breaking. Of course it goes without saying, make sure your reed is plenty wet.

Baskets of Blessings,

Love,

Nancy

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Mini Sleigh Basket


I made this basket over 10 years ago and love this little pattern. The pattern came from the Farmer's Wives. http://www.farmerswivesbaskets.com/index.html It was from the Farmer's Wives that I purchased the little wooden base with predrilled holes. I was on their website today and no longer see the pattern which is too bad because I always thought it was awfully sweet. The stakes are made from #4 round and the sleigh runners are made from #6 round. The weaving is 11/64" flat and #2 round. This little basket is just right for holding some Christmas candy. It weaves up quick and easy and makes a great little gift.
Enjoy!
Nancy

Friday, December 5, 2008

Market Basket with Rewoven Border


This basket is made on a D handle and is finished off with a beautiful rewoven border. The strip in the middle is maple and has been embellished with rub-ons.

Enjoy and Blessings,

Nancy

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas Berry Basket


A small round berry basket much like this one was my very first basket that I ever made. Here is a simple one I made to teach the boy scouts.
Love,
Nancy

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Basket Cruise News

Yesterday I ran across some fun information that I wanted to share with all of you. In 2010 there is going to be a basket weaving cruise! Some of the instructors teaching on board are favorite weavers of mine. I must confess, I wish I was one of the instructors teaching. Maybe someday I will be famous enough to be asked to do so. Anyway, here is the information link where you can check out all the details.
Enjoy!
Nancy

Monday, December 1, 2008

December Newsletter

Basketmaster’s Weavings
December 2008 Newsletter, Issue 2

Dear Friends,

An early Merry Christmas to all of you. I hope you have had a wonderful Thanksgiving. The holidays are in full swing with colder weather and Christmas music in the air. Have you finished your shopping for the season? Are you looking for just the right gift? How about something homemade from your very own hands. December’s kit of the month is a Mini Market Basket. This basket is just the right size to hold 6 mini muffins or 2 extra large muffins. It is also perfect for holding a coffee mug and a bag of gourmet coffee. You will have several choices of colors to use when weaving this basket so you may design it to coordinate in any room of the house. This is a beginner basket so no weaving experience is necessary. Cost of the class is $25 and this includes all weaving material needed to weave one basket. Additional kits are $10 and again you have your choice of colors.

I’ve heard from several of you who were unable to attend any of the November classes yet still wanted to make the November kit of the month gift basket. For this month, you will have a choice of baskets that you may make at any of the class times. Just let me know when you sign up if you wish to make the November kit or the December kit. Prices are the same.

I’m not someone who likes to send attachments with my e-mails so please look at my blog to view the picture of this basket. You can scroll back through the blog to see the November basket as well.

December Class Schedule and Kit of the Month
The approximate finished size is 4” x 6” x 6” high.

Class Dates and Times
Friday, December 5, 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Sunday, December 7, 9:00 am – 12: 30 pm
Friday, December 12, 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm

Again, I provide all the weaving material. What you need to bring are the following:
Tape measure
Dish pan or large bucket to hold water
Old kitchen scissors
Old bath towel
A dozen or so spring type clothespins
A small flat blade screw driver
A scrap of fine grade sand paper
A great attitude and a smile on your face ;- )
Please wear old clothing to class

Class size is limited. Please call or e-mail me early so I may reserve your spot. Reservations are taken on a first come first serve basis. I will form a waiting list as needed. At this time, all classes are held in my home in Cabezon, 5 minutes west of the church. I will send all students specific directions.

Question of the month:
Nancy, I would like to weave a large basket like some that I’ve seen in your home and on your blog. When will you teach a class for a big basket?
Answer: Great question because I love weaving larger baskets. Here is the thing. Bigger baskets take longer to weave. They can also be more difficult to manage and shape. 95% of my current students are brand new to weaving. I personally feel that new weavers need to weave a handful of easier baskets before moving on. That said, everyone advances at their own pace and I would never want to discourage anyone from stretching their wings and trying something a bit more difficult. At this time, my plans are to offer something more challenging and larger come February or March along with a different beginner basket. You will, at that time, have a choice of two or even three baskets to weave during class. Students desiring to advance in their skills should feel comfortable in the basic basket weaving techniques that are taught in beginner level baskets before moving on to something more challenging.

Please always remember, that if I’ve failed to mention something in this newsletter that you have a question about, just call or send me an e-mail and I’ll get right back to you with an answer. As I told you last month, I love weaving and I look forward to sharing my joy and enthusiasm of it with you. Here is my contact information:
e-mail: basketmaster_nancy@yahoo.com
blog: http://basketmasterweavings.blogspot.com/

May you use this season to bless others and in return have baskets of blessings,
Nancy

Monday, November 24, 2008

Basket Classes


Basket classes are up and running. I am so excited to see this happening. It is so good to be teaching again. Here is a photo of my very first class in my home this past week. It is from left to right, myself, Faith and Naomi. You girls did a beautiful job. It is hard to believe it is your first basket you did such a great job!

May your baskets always be full of many, many blessings,

Love,

Nancy

Thursday, November 20, 2008

French Randing Basket

I wove this basket using a technique called French Randing. To double my fun I used two colors of reed placed side by side as I wove the diagonal weave. This gives an interesting look to any basket. The best tip yet is that it gives you something to do with all those short scraps you have laying around. Those pieces woven in are actually only about 8" long.
Have fun and try this neat technique.
Baskets of Blessings,
Nancy

Monday, November 17, 2008

Lamp Basket

This is one of my very favorite baskets. Ok, I say that about most all my baskets. hehehe
Seriously though, I love this basket. It is my own pattern and I wanted it delicate so it is woven with 11/64" flat reed. The "D" handle is a lamp handle and came prewired. The trick with this basket was including the dangling beads with the rim. Looking at this picture the beads look like tiny lights. What I did here was I stained the entire thing, even my lasher before lashing on the rim with the beads. When all the pieces were stained I lashed on the rim sandwiching in the ribbon of beads. I made sure to keep the lasher very wet because since it was already stained, it felt a bit more brittle. This basket sits on my kitchen counter. On one side it holds a ceramic container that I keep pens, pencils and scissors in. On the other side fits a square Kleenex box. On the end I drape my sunglasses so I don't lose them. It is very practical and gets a lot of use. As a side note here. Hobby Lobby has all their fall craft items 66% off this week. I got some very pretty beads similar to what I used on this basket on sale there today and was thinking what basket I would weave them into. The ideas are forming in my head.
Happy weaving and baskets of blessings,
Love,
Nancy

Thursday, November 13, 2008

November 2008 Issue 1

Basketmaster’s Weavings
November 2008 Newsletter, Issue 1

Dear Friends,

Welcome to my very first newsletter! I’m excited to bring it to you.

I had a nice time at St. Thomas Aquinas craft show and I was glad to meet so many of you. How wonderful to find and meet other weavers as well as those of you who want to learn! For my friends who showed up and supported me, a big thank you. For my new friends I just met, I look forward to getting to know all of you.

I plan to send this newsletter out monthly. It will contain information on my classes as well as other weaving news that I want to pass on to you. If any of you have information for my newsletters, please e-mail it to me so I can get it in the next issue. If you ever wish to unsubscribe from the newsletter, just let me know. Also, I will never share your e-mail with anyone.

I cannot believe we are 2 weeks into November with Thanksgiving fast approaching. During November and as we near Thanksgiving, we are called to pause and reflect on our many blessings. As I sit and weave quietly I am given some time to myself when I can think of how great our God is and of all he has given us. I hope you can find time in your schedule to do the same.

Class Schedule for November Kit of the Month

Class Dates and Times:
Monday, November 17, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm
Friday, November 21, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm
Friday, November 21, 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm

We will be weaving the November kit of the month, a square Christmas gift basket. Cost for the class is $25 and that includes all your weaving material to make one basket. If you choose to weave an identical second basket on your own, the cost of materials only kit is $10. It is helpful, to let me know ahead of time if you will be wanting additional basket kits and I will have them ready for you.

Class size is limited. Please call or e-mail me early so I may reserve your spot. Reservations are taken on a first come first serve basis. I will form a waiting list as needed. At this time, all classes are held in my home in Cabezon, 5 minutes west of the church. I will send all students specific directions.

Again, I provide all the weaving material. What you need to bring are the following:
Tape measure
Dish pan or large bucket to hold water
Old kitchen scissors
Old bath towel
A dozen or so spring type clothespins
A great attitude and a smile on your face ;- )
Please wear old clothing to class

Question of the month:
Nancy, How did you get started in basket weaving?
Answer: I was working as an RN and signed up for a basket weaving class through the parks and recreation in Peoria, Arizona. I took the class and made my first basket. The next day I took the basket to work to show the other nurses. They were surprised that I made a cute little basket in just one evening and they asked me if I could teach them how to do it. I said sure! That was my start. From there we moved to Wichita, Kansas. I taught weekly for the parks and recreation department there. It was at that time I started writing my own basket patterns. I formed a basket weaving guild with another lady in Wichita called “Basket Weavers on the Prairie.” From there we moved several more times before settling in Rio Rancho. With each move, I've taught classes to anyone who wanted to learn.

Ok, remember, this is my very first newsletter so if I’ve failed to mention something that you have a question about, please call or send me an e-mail and I’ll get right back to you with an answer. I love, Love, LOVE weaving and I look forward to sharing my joy and enthusiasm of it with you.

e-mail: basketmaster_nancy@yahoo.com

May you have baskets of blessings,
Nancy

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Newsletter



Dear Friends,

After the weekend craft show I've been spending time reclaiming my house and taking care of the joyous task of house cleaning. Ok, if you know me, you know I'm joking because I don't like house cleaning. It's just one of those necessary tasks in life. Also last Monday I had some minor toe surgery so I was off my feet for the last couple of days and my house has really been calling my name, "Nancy, Clean me. Mop my floors. Wipe down the shower." hehehe Today my foot feels sooo much better so I'm trying to get order reestablished and good home cooking back on the table. My poor family has had pizza, hamburgers and Kentucky Fried Chicken the last few days. Thank goodness for take-out but I bet our cholesterol has gone up 50 points. (Mine is already high, yikes.)

What I wanted to share with you is that I'm in the process of creating a monthly newsletter. For those of you at the craft show who gave me your e-mail address, I have those. The newsletter will hopefully be out by the end of this week. I plan to put the newsletter up on my blog each month, but for you readers here who would like to receive the newsletter in your in-box each month, just send me send me an e-mail with "newsletter" in the subject line. I'll add your e-mail address to my list and it will come to you directly that way. Please believe me, I will not share your e-mail address with anyone. I won't spam your in-box with junk. You will only receive basket weaving information about the classes I'm teaching as well as other basket weaving information I feel worthy to pass on. If at any time you no longer wish to receive e-mails from me, just let me know.

Have a wonderful day and Happy Weaving,

Love,

Nancy

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Craft Show Day 1


I'm home from the craft show. Everyone is either relaxing at home or off somewhere. I have some quiet time to myself. Here are a couple of pictures of my show space, which consisted of one 8 foot table. Yes, that is me in the yellow shirt! I don't post a picture of myself very often. The show was on the slow side, but I made some sales and have been compiling an e-mail list for a newsletter. More on that in a few days. The exciting part is that there are people in the area who already weave that I got to meet and others who are really interested in learning! The show continues tomorrow as well.
Have a great evening.
Love,
Nancy

Friday, November 7, 2008

November Kit of the Month


I've decided to do a kit of the month. Actually, after the first of the year I may do three kits of the month. I will teach these kits in classes as well as offer them for purchase for anyone who wants to weave more outside of class. This will also provide an option for anyone who wants to weave but cannot attend my classes.

The picture above is the first, November, "Kit of the Month". It is a Christmas gift basket that measures about 5 1/2" square by about 3" high. The kit includes everything needed to make one of these sweet beginner baskets including the decorative ribbon and the little gift box embellishment. I have written a pattern for it which is included in the kit. The pattern is a typical basket weaving pattern and it assumes that you have some basic knowledge of weaving; for instance twining and lashing on a rim. Weaving level: Beginner

At this time, I do not have a shopping cart system set up, but if any of you are interested in this kit, please e-mail me at basketmaster_nancy@yahoo.com

The cost of the kit is $10 and shipping is an additional $5. Shipping cost can be combined on multiple kit orders. There will be an additional charge on over-seas orders. Please contact me for that information.

I'm getting ready to go to the church to set up for my craft show. Please wish me luck!
Love and baskets of blessings,

Nancy

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Craft Show This weekend!


I've been spending time getting ready for the craft show this Saturday and Sunday. If you are in the Albuquerque/Rio Rancho area please stop by. It is at St. Thomas Aquinas church, 1502 Sara Rd , Rio Rancho. That is across the street to the west of Intel. It is in Fr. D'Arco hall behind the church from 8 to 4. I will be selling my baskets as well as demonstrating basket weaving. My goal is to line up some classes to teach and get started with that again. I'm getting excited! This is just the beginning!

Happy Weaving.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Mini Market

These little market baskets are so fun and quick to weave. The handle is a 4" x 6" D. The rim was lashed with cane.
Happy Weaving, Love,
Nancy

Monday, October 27, 2008

WAHM Talk Radio #245


Last week after the WAHM Talk Radio podcast I e-mailed the hostess Kelly McCausey because her podcast struck a chord with me. I told her how I was feeling guilty about wanting to start up my basket weaving teaching business in that I would be taking time away from my family. I've always felt blessed to be a SAHM and I didn't want my business to affect our family life. Kelly invited me to be a guest on her podcast and did a telephone interview with me and Gina Badality on the topic of work and guilt. I was a little nervous but I think it turned out well and I really got some great input. The biggest thing I took away is that this business is not 'all about me'. I'd always wanted my children to see me as a good role model being a mommy and a wife. Now I see that I can be a role model to my children in running a small business as well.

Please click one of the links to listen to episode #245 WAHM Talk Radio or you can subscribe to WAHM Talk Radio via iTunes.


or


Have a great day!

Nancy

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sweet Angel Basket




Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Technique/Tip Tuesday--Spoke Weight


I have a couple of favorite basket weaving tools, but today I'm going to talk about my #1 tool, the Spoke Weight.

When I first learned how to weave we would put our dishpans full of water on the table to hold our reed in place. While this worked, it was very space consuming. The spoke weight is a heavy metal weight that also is a ruler. It is perfect for holding reed in place and measuring to get the exact length of reed or space between reeds. This is a must have tool for basket weavers.

Here is my tip. What if you don't have a spoke weight and don't want to put the dishpan on the table? What if you do have a spoke weight yet your basket is large and you need more than one. Here's what you do. Go to your pantry and get out a bag of dried beans and use that as a weight. Dried beans are inexpensive, the plastic bag keeps the beans dry, and they don't take up hardly any additional table space. Use 2, 3, or 4 bags if needed. It is a handy homemade kitchen tool to make your basket weaving just that much easier!

Love,

Nancy

Monday, October 20, 2008

Kitchen Wall Basket

The cookie is really a Christmas ornament that I hot glued to the front of this basket. The stakes are made with 3/8" plus the green 1/4" flat. The weavers are 11/64 flat/oval.
Love,
Nancy

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tea Bag Basket

This is one of my favorite practical baskets.
Love,
Nancy

Friday, October 17, 2008

Progressing Forward with the Craft Show


I got quite a few things done yesterday. I made my own business cards on the computer and then rubber stamped a basket on them. They turned out nice. I also made up price tags for my baskets as well as contact sheets for people to sign up to get information from me. I'll have these out at the craft show. I also scheduled a few dates on the calendar to teach my classes. Now I pray that my classes fill up with students! I've also been gathering my baskets together into the guest room to prepare them for the show. I'm getting excited and pumped up now!

Love,

Nancy

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Rio Grande Arts and Crafts Festival




I went to a high end art and craft show this past weekend as a shopper. I made sure I went because an online basket weaving friend was there displaying her baskets. Arlene makes beautiful baskets and is very diversified in her weaving. She works with reed, pine needles, waxed linen and weaving on gourds. Her work is fabulous. Arlene gave me some great tips for when I have my craft show and it was truly inspiring to visit with a crafter who works in the same media as myself. Please visit her site at http://www.azbaskets.net/ and click on her various gallery links to see photos of her incredible work and I'm serious when I say it is incredibly beautiful. One more thing. Arlene is dealing with leukemia. Please be sure to keep her lifted up in prayer. She was doing great at the show and has a healthy attitude of living each day to the fullest. Her work and her attitude are an inspiration to us all. The top photo shows the festival tent located at I-25 and Paseo Del Norte in Albuquerque. This festival is held over the two weekends of the International Balloon Fiesta. The bottom photo is inside the super sized tent where the artisans have their booths. This was the 20th anniversary of the Rio Grande Arts and Crafts Festival.

Blessings,

Nancy

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Heart Basket

A heart basket is fun and really pretty easy to make. Start by weaving a square base and then "unweave" 2 or 3 stakes on each side (depending on the size of your basket). You can see in the photo above that I unwove 2 stakes on each side. Twine around the base with #2 read to stabilize the basket. Then upset the sides and begin weaving. The hardest thing about this basket is getting the shape the way you want it. The trick here is to use extra clothespins, more than you would normally use. I also think it is so pretty to finish off the top with a braided rim on a heart basket. That gives it a more delicate look.
Happy weaving,
Love,
Nancy

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Fun Kitchen Basket

I like the look of slanted baskets and find them fun to make. The little bunny is actually wired onto the side of the basket for decoration. It is just the right size for holding a loaf of bread!
Love,
Nancy

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Marketing Class

This evening I took my second class through the New Mexico Small Business Administration. It was on marketing. I found the class to be interesting. The instructor covered our customers, products and services and went over a marketing plan structure in detail. Again, it was quite a diverse group of people in attendance. There were seven of us. I think for me, the right track will be to display at the church craft fair and try to get some classes lined up. As our instructor said though, the real trick with marketing is knowing what marketing techniques are NOT working for us and stop or change those so we can look for techniques that will work.
Love,
Nancy

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Technique/Tip Tuesday--Dying Reed


Today I would like to post my directions on how I dye my reed. There are several dyes on the market, but I use good old Rit dye and this is my recipe.

I use a large enamel pot and work outside on an outdoor propane burner. I fill the pot about 1/2 full of water which in my case is about 2 1/2 gallons of water. I get the water up to a boil and add one box of powdered Rit die, 1 cup table salt and 1 cup white vinegar. I use powdered Rit only because it cost less than the liquid, but liquid is fine. I use the salt and vinegar to help get the color to really set well. Yes, it will fade if placed in direct sunlight, most dyes will but the salt and vinegar just seem to help keep it from having any natural fading. Using my recipe gives me really rich colors. Once the water is boiling, I turn off the heat and add my reed. I will add 2 1/2 pounds of reed to this mixture. Any more than that, it just doesn't get the intensity of color that I like. Usually I will dye 1 pound of 3/8" flat and 1 pound of 1/4" flat. Then I use 1/2 pound of another size of my choice. This just seems to be what works for me. I open up my pounds of reed and submerge them into the pot of dye doing one pound at a time. I have a big set of barbecue tongs to help push the reed down into the water. Sometimes it wants to float and most times I have to turn it to be sure it gets complete coverage. I have plenty of newspaper on the ground to catch drips and to also lay the reed on to dry once it has achieved it's color. Getting the color usually only takes a few minutes, but I have been known to let the reed soak for up to an hour. Dying reed is a simple process and very fun to watch the colors appear. I don't wear gloves, but I do wear old clothes. Please don't dye it in your kitchen. Accidents can happen too easy and oh what a mess! Also, be sure to visit http://www.ritdye.com/ for color charts, techniques and ideas.
Love,
Nancy

Writing a Business Plan


Yesterday was my first class through the New Mexico Small Business Administration. It was on writing a business plan. There were 7 of us in the class and we all had quite diverse interests. The instructor, David Naquin pushed and probed to get us to really think about some of the questions and topics he presented. A business plan is the declaration and demonstration of your expertise. We looked at; What is the need or opportunity? Demonstrate your knowledge of your market. Describe your company. Describe your products/services. Use projected financials to show you understand how to make a profit. Show you understand cash flow and your actual funding needs.

It made me really think and I will be writing up a business plan this week. I'm sure I will revise it from time to time, but I think it will help keep me on the right track.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Another Blue Ribbon

What I didn't tell you yesterday is that I actually got 3 blue ribbons. I entered this scrapbook page into the fair as well and it received a blue. 3 for 3!!!! This really was a fun experience. Even the kid enjoyed seeing their mother's items on display. They want to enter things next year, and they should! I think we are going to make this a yearly family event.
Love,
Nancy

Saturday, September 20, 2008

My 2 Blue Ribbons




You all know that this was my first year to enter some of my baskets into the fair. Well, I entered in two categories and I got 2 blue ribbons!!!! How cool is that! My sweet friend Naomi took these pictures at the New Mexico State Fair from her cell phone and e-mailed them to me. Thanks Naomi! You're the greatest! I must say, I'm pretty excited about this.
Love,
Nancy

Friday, September 19, 2008

My Mistake and How God Spoke to Me


Dear Friends,
As you know I've prayed about my passion and about starting up my basket weaving teaching business. As you also know I've got a problem with time management. Well, God spoke to me through a stranger named Lorrie from "Teach Magazine" http://www.teachmagazine.net/home.php and a stranger named JoJo at "Grace Talk Soup."http://www.talkshoe.com/talkshoe/web/talkCast.jsp?masterId=19736
JoJo was interviewing Lorrie on her podcast and Lorrie was speaking about the importance of spending time with God EVERY day. She says this is #1 priority for a wise woman. Yes, I've heard this many times before, but there was something about the way that Lorrie phrased it that struck a chord. Yes I do go to church every Sunday and yes I do teach religion to 6th graders every Tuesday and yes I do listen to Joyce Meyer's podcast http://www.joycemeyer.org/ once a week but I've not really been spending time with God through prayer and the Bible. This is what should be my #1 task to do on my list for time management. I know in my heart that all things are possible through God. So, right here, right now I vow to spend quality time with God in the Bible and in prayer EVERY day. I know that through him my problems with time management will lessen and I can't wait to share with you in the future how I do with my time management skills and I also can't wait to share how other areas in my life will improve. Because I just know they will!
Love and blessings,
Nancy

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My Dream and Little Drum Basket


Don't you like it when you want something so much you start dreaming about it? Then you know in your heart you must really want it. I was dreaming about a basket to weave. It was huge and unique and used sheepskin. Ok, I know this sounds kind of crazy, but I have it pictured in my mind and one of these days I'm going to weave it! I'll post a picture of it when it's done. In my dream my basket was in an art gallery and had a price tag of hundreds of dollars and people loved it! I like it when I wake up and actually remember what I dreamed about. I can still see that basket so vividly in my mind.
The above basket is a drum. I know someone has a pattern for one of these. I just saw this picture in a magazine and I came up with my own pattern. The red and white stripes are 1/4" flat. The blue is 1/2" flat and flat/oval as well as #3 round. I used a 5" x 7" D handle. What a fun basket!

Love,

Nancy

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Time Management, Habits and Organization


I am struggling with time management, some habits, and some areas of organization in my life. I have come to the realization that these things are not going to improve themselves overnight. I'm 44 years old and I have struggled with them all my life. Let me back up by first saying that I HATE cleaning. I mean, I really hate housework. I've never had a housekeeper and most likely never will have one so this is a task that falls onto me. Now with that said, I do keep up with the minimum amount, but then it starts to pile up. Then it starts to snowball. Then my whole house needs vacuumed, dusted, toilets cleaned, and so forth. Ugh! I have the understanding that if I would just manage to do a little each day then my life would be much more pleasant and less stressful. It is very important for me to get my basket business up and running. I have continued to work on this, but certainly not as much as I would like. I guess I think it's pretty pathetic that I'm a SAHM and all my kids are in school and yet I feel I don't have the time to do this! What's wrong with me? Well, I guess it boils down to time management, my habits (the bad ones anyway) and organization or lack there of. Over the course of my life I have ups and downs in these areas where I will go for spells doing a great job of keeping up with the house, children, finances etc. It is at these times that I am really pumped up to get my own business going. Then there are other times that I feel like I'm drowning in little mundane meaningless tasks that just take up my time. I don't watch much TV but was watching a favorite program, "The Biggest Loser". These people have let this one area in their lives slip horribly and are getting on the right track to a better life. I have let my life slip with regards mainly in the time management area. It is right now that I vow to work on this. I know I can do it by creating one good habit and establishing it and then another and another and maintaining my previous good habits that I develop. Part of me honestly doesn't know where to begin. I am picking a place right now. I am going to maintain my incoming mail and the paper that it brings into the house. I'm going to get it organized, shredded, bills paid, filed, etc. Anything that has to deal with the mail is what I'm going to work on this week on a DAILY basis. If any of you have any great time management resources, please post them or links to them on my comments.
Thanks and Love,
Nancy

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Pencil Basket




Sunday, September 14, 2008

Home From Scout Camping and Woven Baskets #10 & #11


What a fun weekend we had at El Vado State Park in New Mexico. We were at a group campsite right at the lake and the weather was absolutely perfect with the exception of being a bit cold the first night. Thank goodness we had a portable space heater in our pop-up camper. This was the family campout with the scouts and there were 7 families who went. Since it was the family campout we didn't have to sleep in tents. I am so spoiled with having a pop-up. The water was wonderful and the kids spent a great deal of time swimming. A couple of the families brought boats so the boys worked on their boating merit badge and all the kids got a ride in the boat. I got to weave a couple of baskets. I opened it up to anyone who wanted to learn and two of the ladies stayed in the picnic area yesterday afternoon and wove a small round basket. It was nice to get to teach again. Everyone saw my baskets and got to know that I'm a basket weaver so I feel if they want to learn they will give me a call and this was just one way to get my name out there as a basket weaver. The boys however were not interested in weaving. It was just too much fun for them to swim and boat all day. That's ok though. One of the leaders suggested that after church when the cub scouts are doing their burrito baskets that I could work on the basketry merit badge with boys who want to learn. I think that is a really good idea. We as scouts already have the church hall reserved on those Sundays so I could incorporate the weaving with the burrito breakfast. Plus, anyone eating breakfast could come over and take a look at what we are doing. Again, another way for me to get my name out there. I've got to get some business cards made up.

So, that's all for today. I'm busy doing laundry and getting everything put away. So, till tomorrow,

Love,

Nancy

Friday, September 12, 2008

Woven Balls


Thursday, September 11, 2008

Sloped Gathering Basket


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Egg Basket

This egg basket uses embroidery hoops for the frame. Try to remove the metal or plastic tightening mechanism. If that is not possible, try to flatten the mechanism out and hide it behind the God's eye.
Love,
Nancy

Monday, September 8, 2008

Woven Basket #9

I'm on a roll now having woven 9 baskets in 2008 considering I just started a couple weeks ago. Today I did a small wall basket made of oak. I used #3 round reed looped around itself to form the handle. I think it turned out very cute. Tomorrow I will try to get more pictures taken.
Love,
Nancy

A Quiet Day


Today I've been doing a bit of paper crafting in preparation for the church craft show where I plan to sell my baskets and hopefully get some classes lined up. I've been using my Cricut and using the markers to outline and then cut different shapes. I've made some charms that I can thread onto a lollipop stick. I felt like I was in need of some lesser expensive items aka cheap. I plan to sell these for only .25 but hey it all adds up. I've also been planning my craft space. I need to plan to use vertical space as my horizontal space is limited. I plan to get milk crates, place them on their sides and then have a board going across between two of them. This will give me a shelf. I can stack these two high for additional space. I'll paint the boards a pretty color, I'm thinking red. Right now my plan is to decorate the booth with fresh red and white to attract the buyers and future students.

Love,

Nancy

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Scrapbook Sharing


Saturday, September 6, 2008

Scrapbook Sharing


Friday, September 5, 2008

www.smallbusiness.officelive.com


Today I heard about http://www.smallbusiness.officelive.com/ . It is a website run by Microsoft that is geared specifically for the ultra small business so it sounds perfect for those of us just starting out. I was told it is very easy to design my own web page and it will grow with me as my business grows. I am going to have to spend much more time researching this, but it sounds perfect for me. I can start out with just e-mail and blogging and can move on up to where I can sell things directly from the site. I heard about it from the podcast "Lets Talk Success With the Marketing Lady." This has been a very helpful and interesting podcast and I've enjoyed downloading all the shows and listening to them. Not having any knowledge of marketing, I've gained insight with every show I listen to.

Today I also finished lashing on the rim of the basket that I started yesterday and I got it stained. It turned out to be a very pretty basket.

I've been letting some of the housework go so when I post this blog, I've got to get busy and take care of my wifely/motherly duties which really should come first.

Happy Friday everyone,

Love,

Nancy

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Woven Basket #8


Today I've been weaving a basket on a slotted wooden base. I don't know what I was thinking. I thought that without having to weave the base it would save me time. Nope. It has so much more weaving than a regular basket of the same size. I also forgot how tricky those first two rows can be to keep all the stakes in place. I just need to put the rim on it and it will be done.

Love,

Nancy

Grab a cup of coffee and take time to enjoy some posts from the past