Sunday, July 29, 2012

Hearth Basket

In the past it wasn't uncommon to use a basket to hold kindling for a fireplace.  The tapered sides and low ends of an adapted market basket design was perfect for this use on a hearth.

Today these baskets more often are used to hold magazines or other household items.  A hearth basket can be a functional and decorative touch to any room.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Bean Pot Basket

The Bean Pot Basket’s shape was used by early American basket makers.  These baskets were often woven using rye straw which was readily accessible.   I have used flat reed and flat oval reed to recreate this design. 

Like the gathering basket I made last week this basket also uses two colors for the splints and has a double bottom. The red spokes are visible on the inside of the basket and the cream spokes are seen on the outside bottom. This basket’s sides flare out and then taper back to form the desired shape and size.  Two metal loops were added to opposite spokes before the rim was attached by lashing.  The loops allow the metal handle to be attached to the basket and swing freely.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Double Bottom Gathering Basket

This double bottom round gathering basket  was  another basket  I made during my time at Common Ground 2012 in Joyce Schaum’s  Splint Woven Basket class.

The basket begins with eight natural colored splints woven in a circular web pattern.   This becomes the visible bottom base of the basket.    Once the base is about nine inches in diameter eight colored splints are added on top of the natural colored web.  They are woven into the base, alternating with the natural splints.  These colored splints make up the visible inside base of the basket.

The sides are gradually raised up to form a round container.   This basket is eight inches high and fourteen inches in diameter.   I added two side handles.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Picnic Basket

This past week I enrolled in a Splint Woven Basket class as part of Traditions Week 1 of  Common  Ground on the Hill  held at McDaniel College in Westminster, MD.  Each afternoon I joined other basketmakers as we each wove a splint picnic basket under the direction of Joyce Schaum, a nationally known, award winning Maryland basketmaker. It is so much fun to make baskets in the company of others, sharing laughs, tips and techniques.

The functional basket began with weaving a filled 12” x 18” base with natural colored splints.  The splints were then raised up to form the sides of the basket.  I added a decorative pattern using a navy weaver.  Once the sides reached 6 1/2” high, an inner and outer rim was added and lashed to the basket.   The handles were attached to this rim.  Four more inches of weaving tapered in and formed a smaller opening which was rimed and lashed.

A lid is woven separately using both wide splints and narrow weavers.  I added matching navy bands of color to tie it to the picnic basket.  The  13” x 23” lid can also be used as a low serving tray.  
For more information about Common Ground visit their website 

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Heart basket

A heart basket starts as a flat reed woven pattern mocking a heart shape.  As the sides are turned up the curved humps of the heart are formed with each row added.

Any color reed can be used to weave a heart basket, but I often use red reed for the base.  Red  helps to emphasize the heart shape and creates an alternating pattern with the natural reed used for the side weavers.