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.



Thursday, February 26, 2009

Suppliers Gratiot Lake Basketry and a Free Download

Probably one of the most common questions I get asked is, "Where do you get your supplies?" I wish I could get them locally, but unfortunately, there are only a handful of basket weaving suppliers in the country. You are lucky if you have one near you! I don't. You can do a google search for basket weaving supplies and they will all come up.

I've purchased from many different places and quite honestly, I've never had a "bad" experience with any of them. Today I'm going to tell you about Gratiot Lake Basketry. This is the very first place I ever purchased any basket weaving material and I continue to to give them my business. They are curteous on the phone, have very speedy service and have an excellent variety of supplies. I have been dealing with Gratiot Lake Basketry for over 14 years now and they are still one of the very first places I go to when I want to price something. As always, you need to shop around, but I find that their wooden handle prices (at least for the sizes that I need) can't be beat. They are also very competitive with their other items.

Right now they have a free e-book to download here. "The Weaver's Friendly Handbook for Pricing and Selling Handmade Baskets" by Grace and Forrest Davis. Just scroll about half way down the page to get to it.

Gratiot Lake Basketry is located at:

5484 Petermann Lane
Mohawk, MI 49950-9612

Phone # (906) 337-5116

I'd like to hear where you get your basket weaving supplies and why you purchase from them.

Baskets of blessings and happy weaving everyone,

Nancy

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tip/Technique Tuesday and Crafty Tuesday--Make your Own Reed Diffuser




Have you seen the reed diffusers? They are sold many places these days and some are quite costly. They're reed! Good ol' basket weaving reed! You can make your own for pennies in comparison to what they cost in the stores.


Just use #6 round reed and cut to the desired length. You can use your scraps here. Place in a narrow mouth bottle. My bottle is from a vinegar and oil set that I got at Walmart. You can also get potpourri oil at Walmart as well. Mine is a potpourri gel that I got at a home candle party that I went to. Just fill the bottle with the potpourri fragrance, insert the reed and tie on a pretty ribbon. I also hot glued a small flower embellishment to mine. I made several of these to give as gifts and they are always greatly appreciated.


A bonus craft you can see in my photo of the reed diffuser. This photo is taken in my bathroom. I got some pretty, smooth glass blue rocks and used a clear epoxy to glue them to the wall in my bathroom. The blue rocks and epoxy also came from Walmart's craft department. I like the pretty bling it adds in there.


What other ways do you use up your scrap reed?


Baskets of blessings to you all,


Nancy



Monday, February 23, 2009

A Book Review--Musical Baskets


I received some lovely comments and e-mails regarding my music box basket, seen here. The inspiration for this basket came from these two booklets by Joyce Venti. The first is "Musical Baskets." The second is "Musical Baskets for Special Occasions." They are each 12 pages and both books use the same concept for all their baskets like what I did with mine. They use a 'double base' and are round or oval. Each booklet contains the same general instructions which are sufficient if you've woven a few baskets already. I wouldn't recommend trying a musical basket if you've never woven before. Each booklet contains 7 different patterns but again are much the same style. The main difference is their round diameter or height and some have handles and others do not. They have used some beautiful colors as well as put curls or cross stitching in some of their baskets and have even painted on some of them as an embellishment. All in all, as you can see in the photos, their baskets are very pretty. "Musical Baskets" was published in 1991 and "Musical Baskets for Special Occasions" was published in 1992. I am guessing that they are both out of print but you may be able to find one second hand. Honestly, if you get hold of just one, you will have the basic music box directions and it wouldn't be necessary to have both. You could design your own basket size, and incorporate the directions for the music box as given.

Here is the contact information listed in the books that may help you to get one of your own "Musical Baskets" booklets. Hopefully this information is not obsolete.

The author's contact information is:

Joyce Venti
Baskets, Baskets, Baskets
RR #2 Box 5380
Bangor, ME 04401-9662

The booklets were printed by:
The J.S. McCarthy Co.
Augusta, Maine

A musical basket is a very sweet and special basket. I hope you give one a try. If you do, please leave a comment and a link where I can see your basket!

Baskets of Blessings,

Nancy

PS. Not all musical baskets are the same. There are other music box basket patterns I have run across. Some even have the winding mechanism on the side of the basket so their construction would be quite different.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Basket Sharing Sunday


I LOVE ribbon baskets. They always make me happy. I guess I like them because they have a bit more "bling" and I can make them to fit any occasion or any decor in my house. This is one I made just a couple of weeks ago. The ribbon came from Costco. I must say, they currently have the prettiest ribbon right now. Enjoy!

Baskets of Blessings,

Nancy

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Basket Class Last Night

A scrapbooking card I made last year.
YYY
I don't always talk about my basket classes, but I really wanted to this morning. It was such a nice group of ladies. We talked and laughed and laughed some more. I just woke up with a smile on my face and it is wonderful to know that I have such special people in my life. I really wish I'd have taken a picture of last night, but I didn't. Even though I'm teaching and they are weaving, I get so much from the class in other ways that it just lifts me up.
I hope everyone who reads this blog has an absolutely fantastic day today.

Baskets of Blessings to you all!

Love,

Nancy
YYY

Friday, February 20, 2009

How to Weave A Basket - My Second YouTube Video--Reed

Today's video I talk a little about reed. It is the background I like to teach before actually beginning weaving. This video runs about 4 minutes. Also, I'm not looking down my nose at anyone in the video, it is just that I wear bifocals. There is a point in the video where I bring the reed close to my face and I have to look at it through the lower part of my glasses to see it. It looks like I've turned up my nose! I'll watch that in the future, I promise.

I may need some help here with those of you who have done video before. For some reason, the sound and the video are off a bit. Kind of annoying to me. If any of you have done videos and up-loaded them onto YouTube, I would be grateful for some tips. Also, I see some blogs where the YouTube screen is directly here on the blog rather than this blogger screen you see above in my video. I'm wondering how you do that as well. As long as I'm asking questions, how do people put so many photos up on one blog post? How do some of you do photo collages? Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for any and all tips.

Blessings and Happy Weaving,

Nancy

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Basketweaver's Creed


To the best of my knowledge, this creed was originally published in the Basket Reeder about 15 years ago. I do not know who the original author is to give them credit.
Enjoy and Happy Weaving,
Nancy

Creed for Beginning Basketweavers
Thou shalt never weave with dry reed, lest thy reed break; nor soggy reed, lest it turn hairy.
Thou shalt not overlap weavers on corners; too much corner thickness a clumsy basket makes.
Thous shalt identify the smooth and rough sides of each piece of reed and place the rough surface inside the basket.
Thou shalt inspect thy kit and be sure they weavers and thy stakes are correctly identified.
Thou shalt remember that the position of the spokes determines the shape of the basket; spokes, like infants, take constant care and attention.
Thou shalt read thy pattern completely before beginning.
Thou shalt obtain and use sharp pointed tools for cutting; sewing scissors are for cutting fabric.
Thou shalt not become easily discouraged; keep practicing.
Thou shalt pack down before turning down.
Thou shalt cut thy longest lengths of reed first, lest thou come up short.
Thou shalt cut one entire length of reed before starting another; this preventeth waste.
Thou shalt always buy patterns with colored pictures, or if without color photos, then from their creator or a shop that guarantee-eth the authenticity of the pattern, lest thou purchase bootleg patters, which are stolen property.
Thou shalt not store neither thy reed nor they baskets in plastic bags, except for brief periods, lest such become mildewed. Likewise, leave them not outdoors at night, lest the dew fall on them and mildew bloom.
Whenever possible, thou shalt mark thy tools with thine own name, lest they become lost.
Thou shalt always remember an experienced weaver is just a phone call or e-mail message away. Ask for help.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Crafty Tuesday--Peanut Basket turned into a Prayer Basket


Dear Friends,

This week I wanted to participate in The Southern Housewife's "Crafty Tuesdays". I wove this basket several years ago. It is a peanut basket. You put your peanuts on one side and as you eat them, the shells go on the other. We don't often eat peanuts so I had this basket in my pantry holding some plastic silverware.

Now...I had been thinking about this for quite some time. I am always willing to lift up someone in prayer when needed, but sadly, often times my prayers are short and I go about my day and don't think about other's prayer requests or needs again.

So....Several weeks ago, I saw on Monica's blog that she had done this wonderful idea, similar to my Peanut Basket, but had done it with 2 jars. I thought at the time that was neat and I should do it.

Then...On Sunday, our Priest spoke lovingly about the wonderful healing power of prayer. He spoke about how our prayers help heal physically, mentally and spiritually and that it is our duty as Christians to thoughtfully and whole heartedly pray for others.

I knew when I came home from church on Sunday that I wanted to convert my peanut basket into a prayer basket. I put 3 x 5 cards on one side to write prayer requests on and as I pray for each one, I will move it to the "prayed" side of the basket. The next day, I can move all the cards back to the "pray" side and be reminded to continue and pray for that person's needs again.

I also feel....This will be a wonderful addition to our home for our family and a great example for our children. Anyone in the family can write down any prayer requests. When the family passes by the basket, they will be reminded to pray for those in need, or they may stop for a moment and take a card out of the basket and spend some special time in prayer for that one person. I'm going to keep it on the dining room table so it is highly visible and just another reminder to put God first.

As far as Crafty Tuesday....I did weave this basket several years ago. What I did to it now was tear some strips of fabric about 1/2" wide and about 18" long. One is a black gingham and the other a burgandy toile. I had some tags in my scrapbook stash and I wrote "Pray" on one and "Prayed" on the other and did a little pen stitching. I tied the tags to the basket handle with the fabric strips. The weaving of the basket is an intermediate level, but the craft portion of this is super simple.

I am always willing and happy to pray for anyone. If you have a special need, I will write it on a card and keep it in my prayer basket. My family and I will pray for you. Just leave a comment or send me an e-mail with your prayer request.

Love and Blessings,

Nancy

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day and some Heart Baskets

My Sweet Valentine Mike for over 20 years
Some fun heart shaped baskets for Valentine's day

I love braided rims on my heart baskets. It certainly isn't a requirement, but I guess I think they look delicate just like hearts.
Sweet Mike took me out to breakfast this morning to the Flying Star cafe. We took our laptops but couldn't get them working with their wireless internet this morning. (This was something new I was going to learn...How to use my computer at a location other than my home) I really wish I'd have taken a picture of us in the cafe. The two of us eating breakfast, at a restaurant, with our computers. This world of 'high tech' is crazy. I see teenagers in a group at a restaurant and all of them have their cell phones out and are texting someone rather than talking to who they are with. It is hilarious and yet sad at the same time. What is happening to the art of good ol' conversation. Mike and I were both going to work on our computers and had decided just to go out and have a nice breakfast at the same time rather than work at home. Anyway, the two of us had a very nice conversation and some good laughs while trying to diagnose why we couldn't connect to the internet which the problem was on the end of Flying Star.
Happy Valentine's day everyone. Be sure to show your special someone just how much the mean to you, and I love you all my blog friends.
Love,
Nancy


Friday, February 13, 2009

How to Weave a Basket - My First YouTube Video

Hi Everyone,
I am excited to bring you my very first video that I put up on YouTube. Please contain your excitement because it isn't anything fancy. It is more of a practice run for me in trying out my web cam. I actually made this video several weeks ago, but couldn't figure out how to upload it to YouTube. I'm learning so much about the computer here. My sweet hubby Mike got it uploaded for me so I hope my next attempt goes much smoother.

My plan is to periodically offer instructional videos on basket weaving, or anything else I find interesting and worthy to watch. I love weaving and I feel it is something many people would enjoy, but most people are not exposed to the art of basket weaving. Part of this is because supplies and instructors are not readily available. I hope to be able to demonstrate via my web cam how to weave a basket so if you don't have an instructor nearby, you can learn from my videos. I hope my enthusiasm for weaving will come across in these videos and I will hope you give it a try. My wish is that you enjoy it so much you do search out a weaving teacher in your area to increase your knowledge. For now, the videos will be geared toward the novice with no weaving experience. I do know my lighting is not ideal in this video. I'm working on that, and again this web camming is a new experience for me so have patience please with my budget quality ie. "free videos" and please be kind with your comments.

Here is my short introduction video.
Happy Weaving,
Love,
Nancy

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Thursday Thoughts--An Inexpensive Basket Liner


This list of coffee filter uses is being passed around on the internet. The original author is unknown. My first thought about it is, "What a great, inexpensive basket liner." If you have a small round basket, stick a coffee filter in it. If you are using the basket as a holder for pens and pencils, the coffee filter will keep the basket from getting marked up. If you are using your basket to hold candy or small edible goodies, the coffee filter will keep the basket from getting crumbs or soiled. I'm sure you can think of many other uses, but honestly, a coffee filter liner just looks cute and clean.
Love,
Nancy
Here is the list:
COFFEE FILTERS
Coffee filters ..who knew! And you can buy 1,000 at the Dollar Tree for almost nothing.
1. Cover bowls or dishes when cooking in the microwave. Coffee filters make excellent covers.
2. Clean windows and mirrors. Coffee filters are lint-free so they'll leave windows sparkling.
3. Protect ChinaSeparate your good dishes by putting a coffee filter between each dish.
4. Filter broken cork from wine. If you break the cork when opening a wine bottle, filter the wine through a coffee filter.
5. Protect a cast-iron skillet. Place a coffee filter in the skillet to absorb moisture and prevent rust.
6. Apply shoe polish. Ball up a lint-free coffee filter.
7. Recycle frying oil. After frying, strain oil through a sieve lined with a coffee filter.
8. Weigh chopped foods. Place chopped ingredients in a coffee filter on a kitchen scale.
9. Hold tacos. Coffee filters make convenient wrappers for messy foods.
10. Stop the soil from leaking out of a plant pot. Line a plant pot with a coffee filter toprevent the soil from going through the drainage holes.
11. Prevent a Popsicle from dripping. Poke one or two holes as needed in a coffee filter.
12. Do you think we used expensive strips to wax eyebrows? Use strips of coffee filters.
13. Put a few in a plate and put your fried bacon, French fries, chicken fingers, etc on them.Soaks out all the grease.
14. Keep in the bathroom. They make great "razor nick fixers."

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Homestead Basket--For those of you who don't like to rim

Here is a fun basket, and it is just for you who don't like lashing on a rim! The spokes are 1/2" but honestly, it would be easier if they were only 3/8". Many times when you get into 1/2" flat that it is just to thick to make the folds on this rim. There is a 3/8" band going around the inside top of the basket. When you finish weaving to the top, you lay your 3/8" band in place. Then the spokes loop to the inside of the basket, around the band, and back to the outside of the basket just to the right of themselves. Then they crease and go over the 1st spoke just to the right and tuck behind the 2nd following spoke. Cut it so the ends are hidden behind that second spoke. Did you follow that? This is a fun basket and it weaves up quite quickly.
Baskets of Blessings,
Nancy

Monday, February 9, 2009

Pictures from the Craft Show Yesterday

Hi Everyone,

I just thought I'd share some photos from yesterday's craft show. The top is of me at my booth.

Here is my sweet friend and scrapbooking buddy Mary. Mary is the one who informed me about the craft show. She was selling the C-O-O-L-E-S-T pins and earrings along with a few other items. I wish I would have gotten a close-up of her jewelry which was selling as she had jewelry for every holiday and season and to go with any occasion. Let me tell you, her booth was popular!

It was an enjoyable day and before I forget, I must shout out a big "THANK YOU" to my friends who came to the show. You gals are terrific. Also, to my new friends who stopped by my booth interested in my classes, I look forward to seeing you soon.
Have a great Monday everyone and Happy Weaving!
Nancy

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Craft Show Reminder "It's tomorrow" and a Basket


I wanted to remind everyone in the Albuquerque area about the craft show where I will be displaying my baskets and taking class sign-ups.

It is tomorrow, Sunday Feb. 9th at Holy Family Church, 562 Atrisco S.W., Albuquerque, NM. from 9:00 to 3:30.

If you are in the area I would be thrilled to have you stop by and say "HI" to me. There are certain to be some wonderful handmade items as well as delicious baked goods.
This grocery bag basket is quite different. When weaving you "always" start at the base and weave upward toward the top. Well, never say "always" because rules are made to be broken. This basket has no base. I started weaving on the sides of this basket! Check it out as there is a rim at the top and bottom of the basket. There is a notched handle that is used to hang the basket on the wall. It is hanging on my pantry wall and is a very well used basket.
Happy Weaving and Don't forget about the craft show.
Love,
Nancy

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Two Pie Basket


This basket is called a "Two Pie Basket" because it was made to hold 2 pies! I wove this basket at a convention in St. Louis several years ago. It was a class I took from Jim Rutherford. The basket is made from maple and has leather hinges. The base is solid wood and the stakes are nailed into the base. The rim is also nailed on. There is a raised platform that sits on the base. This allows you to put two pies in the basket without the top one crushing the bottom. Enjoy and Happy Weaving.
Love,
Nancy

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Technique/Tip Tuesday--Book Review--Splint Woven Basketry

Dear Friends,
When I first started basket weaving, fall 1994, I asked my instructor what book she would recommend for learning more about basket weaving. She recommended without hesitation Splint Woven Basketry by Robin Taylor Daugherty. I immediately went out and got it and for quite a long time it was my basket weaving Bible. Still to this day, I refer to it for tips and advice.
My copy was published in 1986 but it was reprinted in 1999. The review I give you comes from my 1986 copy, but I would have to believe that the 1999 edition is just as valuable if not more so.
Splint Woven Basketry is a perfect book for the novice as well as advanced weaver. The photos and drawings are well done and very descriptive. It is easy to follow along while weaving just through the use of the many photos.
Chapters include: Getting Ready, Ribbed Baskets, Plaited Baskets, Spoked Baskets and Finishing Touches.
The book mainly includes patterns made from reed. There are no coiled or pine needle baskets. Robin includes a very nice variety of approximately 30 patterns and one is even of a doll cradle. Her directions are straightforward and she even has historical notes to explain each style of basket. The difficulty of the patterns range from beginner to advanced.
Though the book is not new, it is timeless and continues to be inspirational to me when designing my baskets. It is certainly the one that first comes to mind when I have students asking about books.
This book is found in many public libraries so if you have trouble getting it at your local bookstore, be sure to check the library for a copy.
It is a softback book and contains 160 pages. ISBN 0-934026-22-x
Happy Weaving,
Nancy

Monday, February 2, 2009

My First Blog Award!


Oh Happy Day as I have received my first blog award from Shari at http://sharisrandomramblings.blogspot.com/
Thank you Shari!

If you've been presented with this award, this is what you need to do...Thank the person who gave the award to you, post the award on you blog or on a post, nominate 10 blogs which show great attitude/gratitude, link to the people you chose on your post, and comment on their blogs to tell them about the award! Be sure to copy the award onto your blog!

Here's who I am passing the award onto. These are wonderful people who are creative and honestly their blogs make my day!

1. Naomi, my sweet friend, wonderful scrapbooker and learning to be an awesome basket weaver at http://naomiockerman.blogspot.com/


3. The Southern Housewife at http://hersoutherncharm.blogspot.com/







I hope you all enjoy visiting these blogs as much as I do. Have a blessed day!
Love,
Nancy

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