Thursday, March 22, 2018

Sunflower Basket

I purchased a wooden base with a routered sunflower design.  To highlight the flower colors I used smoked and space dyed reed for the sides.  Small leather handles were attached on two sides.  The final top rows of the basket use smoked round reed to form the rim.  A piece of flat reed is lashed to the inside of the rim.

Monday, March 19, 2018

High Country Basket Weavers Guild Workshop

Participants display their stair step baskets.

I spent Saturday with the High Country Basket Weavers Guild leading a workshop on a stair step basket.  

The basket is unique with two bases - a lower base and an upper base. This design allows the basket to sit on a stair step.  The basket can be a collection point for items that can be later carried up stairs in one trip.

I provided a variety of colored reed for a decorative band around the basket.  Everyone selected different ways  to accent their basket.

It was a fun day of basket weaving and everyone went home with a stair step basket.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Josephine Knot Guild Weave

Saturday the Central Pennsylvania Basket Weavers Guild held their monthly basket workshop.  This month, member Barb Vicente lead a session on a Josephine Knot Basket.

Members had a choice of using all natural reed spokes, all smoked reed spokes or a combination of natural and smoked reed.  I chose the mixed colors for my ribs.  There was a wide variety of colored flat reed and yarns available for weaving the basket.

The Josephine knot is formed first. Then reed is woven in an over/under pattern to flare out the spokes. After several rows are woven on each side of the knot, the basket is gently shaped by tucking the spokes on one side into the basket on the opposite side.  This is repeated with the other side spokes to form the hen basket shape. 

If you are not part of a basket guild I strongly suggest you find a group near you.  You will learn from each other and have fun in the process. Weaving in a group allows you to share hints and techniques of weaving, see the various color combinations others select, and fellowship with other basket weavers.  This was the first time some members had  woven a Josephine knot, while others, like myself, had woven the knot it in other baskets.  By working together everyone was successful and had a finished basket at the end of the day. 

side one
side two

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Natural Gourd with Pine Needle Rim

I used a natural gourd, dyed pine needles and black beads to make the vessel shown.  The black pine needles contrasted the natural gourd color.  The natural sinew provided contrast to the pine needles. 

When the vessel was complete I added a circle of black beads around the top, at the center of the X pattern and along the edge where the pine needles were attached to the gourd.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Colorful Basket for a Rainy Day

Today's rainy, dreary day seemed the perfect time to weave a basket kit from Blue Moon Baskets called Donna's Delicates that I won from a CPBWG Odyssey raffle . You can contact Peggy Adelman at if you want to find out more about the basket kit or directions.

Smoked reed stakes were inserted into an 8 x 12 wooden base.   Rows of brightly colored flat reed were accented against the smoked reed stakes.  Leather handles were attached to the short sides.  The rim was made with four rows of triple twine round smoked reed. A piece of flat reed was placed inside and the rim was lashed with a piece of smoked flat oval reed. The basket stands 10 1/2 " high.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Basket Shopping Cart

The Central Pennsylvania Basket Weavers Guild February workshop featured a Basket Shopping Cart.  Guild member Becci Melcher lead the session.  We worked from the Basket Buggy Shopping Caddy pattern by Pam Feix ( )

Step 1 - attach the frame to base
Using a Knalla Shopping Cart on Wheels sold by IKEA
 we first attached a slotted wooden base to the frame. 

Step 2 - Insert spokes

 Forty-two spokes were evenly spaced and inserted around the base.  After the spokes were glued in place some members followed the pattern as written.  Other members used reed, colors and patterns of their own choosing while following the basic form of the pattern.

I was not pleased with my weaving or color selection so I went home early with the project unfinished.  This was a first for me.  After stewing over the basket for a while, I decided to take it apart and start again.   Have you ever done this?  Sometimes it is the best solution to get the results you want. 

I am much happier with my second attempt.  I changed the color scheme and included bands of burlap and navy ribbon for accents.

Finished dimensions: 16"L x 10"D x 20" High

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

2018 Service Project - Sleep Mats

 In addition to weaving baskets this winter I have been working on a community service project. 

Using recycled plastic shopping bags I am crocheting  large 4 foot by 6 foot sleep mats. The matts are given to the local police to distribute to the areas homeless as needed.

It takes about 600 bags to make a large mat.  Friends save their shopping bags for the project.  Once a week I join a group of ladies to fold bags, cut strips, join strips and roll them into the balls. I usually crochet a little in the evening as I watch television.
Step 1 - fold bags
Step 2 - cut strips
Step 3 - connect strips
Begin to Crochet
Random color pattern from colored bags