Rib Baskets

Rib baskets have a basic framework. The basic shape is made at the beginning and consists of hoops and ribs. The number of hoops give the basket its shape along with the ribs give the framework to weave.
A great variety of baskets can be constructed from traditional to contemporary.
These baskets often have names that reflect their shapes e.g. egg, hen , melon.
Materials A large variety of garden plants can be used. For a compressive guide to materials and their preparation see
Fibre Basketry Homegrown and Handmade-The Fibre Weavers of South Australia.

FRAME Make two circles of similar size

Put the two together to form the basic frame with the handle to the inside. Choose one to be the handle– put the join at the bottom.

Take a length of dampened pliable material to form the ear that holds the 2 pieces together and the ribs.

INSERT RIBS. Cut 6-8 measuring under the basket frame to get approx length.
Cut a wedge either end and insert into ear. Adjust to get desired shape. As weaving
progresses you can add in more ribs if the gaps get too big.

WEAVING– take a damped leaf , fold in half., twine over and under between frame and ribs .Complete 2 rows each end to set the ribs and hold the basket together .Weave about 4cm each end until you reach the middle. Push material together tightly as you weave.

    Spaces will develop as you progress . Fill in with weaving that does not always go across . Weave to the point of the triangle—turn around and weave back , next row weave one less rib, turn around and go back. Repeat until space is filled.

 When your nearing the centre weave one side to the centre and then tie back that side—this stops it becoming messy. Then continue weaving. When it gets close use a large needle to weave into the spaces. For a good tight
finish wait a few days, push the weaving up tight and you will be able to fit a few more rows in.

Don’t despair if the result is not perfectly even . A lot of the appeal of working with natural materials is each item is unique with all its rustic charm.

Deb Cantrill  January  2012

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