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.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

What is a Mug Rug? Let Me Show You!

Hi Friends,
Have you seen these little cuties floating around the internet lately?  I love these things!  They are called a mug rug.  What is a mug rug you ask?  A mug rug is like a mini quilt that is somewhere in size between a coaster and a place mat.  Most I've seen are rectangular in shape but I've seen heart shaped and flower shaped ones as well.  They are made to set your beverage on as well as a crumbly baked good.  You are encouraged to eat off these sweet mats!  I think this is just a nice little touch as I sit quitely with my coffee and spend time with our Lord.
If you are a scrapbooker, you probably know what ATC's are.  IMHO, this is the ATC in the sewing world except sizes vary unlike the ATC's.  These mug rugs are embellished lavishly and traded in sewing and quilting circles.  One of the best parts is that they use your scraps!  I'm going to encourage you to google mug rugs and you will see the beautiful work quilters have done in making these.  Some are true mini works of art!

Let me tell you how I made my mug rug.
I found my favorite size to be 5 1/2" x 11".  I like this size where the length is double from the height.  The binding you see around the edge is the backing of my mug rug just wrapped around to the front.  You could finish the edge in bias tape or with another binding, but I find it is super easy to just wrap the backing around to the front side, fold it under so there is no raw edge, and stitch.  There is a piece of batting 5 1/2" x 11" sandwiched between the front and back.


I made my mug rug just last night and it took about an hour.  The only real embellishing I did is I stitched this little phrase with my sewing machine.


Here is the back side of my mug rug.  I cut the backing one inch wider than the mug rug so that I could wrap it around to the front and fold under my raw edges. 

So my top fabric I did first and pieced the pieces together and then squared it up to a size of 5 1/2" x 11".  I cut a piece of batting 5 1/2" x 11".  I cut the backing 7 1/2" x 13".

Here was my first attempt at making a mug rug.  This was leftover fabric from my son's curtains that I sewed several years ago.  The fabric is printed to have this pieced look to it.  This mug rug happens to be 5" x 10".  That is when I decided I wanted my next one to be just a bit larger.  This will be great for his room though. 

Have you tried to make one of these?  Send me a picture if you have.  What else are you sewing, weaving or crafting these days?  I'd love to hear!
Blessings,
Nancy

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Enjoying a Windowsill Herb Garden

Here's a tip:  Weave your basket around a cottage cheese container and then use the cottage cheese container to grow your indoor herbs.  I always have plants and herbs growing on my kitchen windowsill.  How about you?

Have a blessed Sunday,
Nancy

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Finishes for a Basket - A Reader Question

Dear Friends,
A sweet reader has asked me the following question.
I see that you like to use Minwax yellow can for staining. Do you also use some kind of protective coating - either after staining or instead of staining? I've heard a weaver should treat their reed baskets. Is there a good product other than those specifically for baskets (which I would have to order).
Here is my answer:
I only use Minwax stain in the yellow can either spray or liquid. I have in the past used Weaver’s spray stain which worked quite nice but I had to order it. Minwax is just readily available and there are so many colors to choose from.

I personally do NOT put on any type of protective coating at all on my baskets after they are woven. I think some of the coatings that you mentioned make the basket hard and brittle. (she had mentioned using polycrylic, acrylic, polyurethane in her letter to me)  I’m not saying this is wrong, but I just don’t like it. I’ve tried other stains that have a finish to them, perhaps kind of a shellac type finish. I tried it and said never again. My basket was sticky for weeks.  I guess it is a personal preference thing, but I'm just happy with my good ol' Minwax and that's it.

So dear readers.....What do YOU do?  Do you put a finish on your baskets?  Please leave a comment and let us know.

Happy Weaving everyone.  I hope the weather is treating you all well in your neck of the woods.  We are fine here in New Mexico but the smoke from the Arizona fires is something else.  For my readers who are close to the fires, please know you are in my prayers.  Also for my dear readers who have been dealing with all the tornadoes and crazy weather, know I'm praying for you too.
Blessings,
Nancy

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Wool Drying Basket



Hi Everyone,
I am a fan of baskets with feet, so I think this wool drying basket is just beautiful!  W.H. Baskets has the pattern for FREE on their site, but it is only available for this month.  Grab it now!  Wanda, this is another beautiful basket!  Thanks for another great pattern!!!

At the end of the month the pattern goes up for sale so you can get it later, but getting it now is your best opportunity.  I've had requests from some of you to send the pattern after it is no longer for free.  Sorry gang, but I just can't do that.  These businesses that I showcase here have to put food on the table for their families.  It is kind and generous that they offer the patterns for free for the month.  I try to give you a heads-up to grab the pattern while you can, but that is the best I can do.  If you miss it, just order the pattern from them.  It is a way of saying thanks for all they are doing.

On another note...  Mike and I had a wonderful day yesterday celebrating our 23rd anniversary.  He took me to Chic-Fil-A for breakfast!  What a sweetie!  We had a business party at the house last night as one of his colleagues was changing divisions within the company.  Tonight after church we will go out for a nice dinner and really celebrate.  Best thing about having a party at the house is now the house is fully clean!  Today I can just rest and relax.

Hugs everyone and have a blessed Sunday.
I love you guys.
Nancy

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