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,


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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Back To Basics in Basket Weaving - Designing your Own Basket

On Sunday, I showed you some casserole carriers that I wove around a Corning Ware dish. I've had e-mails asking how to do this and how I design my own baskets.
From time to time I like to weave a basket to contain something specific like this Corning Ware dish. I've also woven around plastic containers of various sizes. These plastic containers basically become a liner for the basket. This way, I can put food or plants in my baskets and I don't have to worry about my baskets becoming damaged or wet.
The way I start designing the basket is I know what purpose I want to use the basket for.
If I want to weave it around something like this dish in the picture, I measure around it. Look closely at the photo. My tape measure extends two inches on each side of the basket. I would cut my stakes for this basket 17". This gives me room to cut and tuck and I won't run short when I get to the top. So basically, measure the three sides (side, bottom, side) and add 4 inches. If it is a large basket, I would add 6" or an extra 3" to each side. Make sense?
Then I almost always use 1/2" flat or 5/8" flat for my stakes or spokes. I weave typically with thinner reed than my spokes so 3/8", 1/4" or 11/64" flat or flat oval or round reed, anything that is thinner or more flexible than my stakes. If I use fillers for my base, I often use 3/8" or 1/2" flat. To know the number of stakes to cut, you're just going to have to do the math on your particular project. It depends on what size stakes you are using and the spacing you choose between each stake.
As I weave up the sides, my creativity just guides me. I just have a finished height in mind. For my rim row, I weave 1/8" narrower reed than what I'm going to use for my rim. for example, if my rim is 1/2" flat/oval, I would weave my top rim row 3/8" flat.
Have you ever been at a store and saw a basket you really liked and thought you could weave it at home with a higher quality look and in colors that matched your decor? Just keep your tape measure in your purse and measure around the basket like I did in the photo. Take a few notes as to what sizes of materials they used and the finished dimensions of the basket. Then you can go home and weave it with better quality products, better reed, better handles etc.
Be sure to post a comment or send me an e-mail if you have further questions about this. I hope it gets you started on designing your own baskets. As always, be sure to let me know when you finish a basket and post me a link to its photo.
Happy Weaving,


John Toft Basketry said...

Good tips as usual.

Lynn Majidimehr said...

Thought you'd like to know your mini muffin basket rim directions helped me re-do a rim that I wasn't happy with. The rim in the pattern directions was flimsy, your directions worked out great, and the basket is much nicer! If you'd like to see the post it's at

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