Basketry, Are You a Basket Case?

Basketry is the process of weaving natural fibers into container shapes. These are some of the oldest objects made by humans. And guess what! Humans got the idea of weaving fibers to make useful objects by watching birds build their nests. Or so some scholars believe. Portions of baskets have been found in Egypt dating back 10,000 to 12,000 years. And evidence of this craft have been found all over the world.

Oak Strip Picnic Basket

There are many materials that can be used, for example:



Strips of Wood

Sea grass

Classic Design



Pine Boughs


Vintage Sewing Caddy

These are just a few of the possibilities. Every area of the world has its own traditions using materials that are locally available. Take a look around where you live and see what kind of materials can be used for your project. As I stated, there are likely many natural fibers near you that will be great for getting started. Almost any plant supple enough to wrap around your finger a couple of times without breaking will work well.

Wood Strip Construction

Each basket is woven with a base, a rim and sidewalls. Some have lids and decorative handles. As with many other crafts, there are many patterns available to make those first few creations a little less confusing. You might even consider beginning with a kit that contains a pattern and all the materials you will need.

Other descriptors include basket weaving, sea grass, basket weaving instructions and basket making.

What You Need to Get Started:

Get yourself a pattern.

Select materials such as rattan, willow, reed or sea grass.

Cutting tools such as scissors and pruning shears.

Simple Pattern

Water and bucket for soaking your fibers.

Wooden clothespins to hold the loose ends in place.

An ice pick or awl to help widen holes easing the task of passing fibers through.

A flexible tape measure, cloth or plastic.

Some Online Resources That Will Help You Get Started:

Some Good Basketry Instructional Information

A Comprehensive Website

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