Every quilter loves baskets, I am sure of that because I do. I love the unusual baskets like the ones you would find in the Arabian countries or in Africa and the handmade baskets of course. My mother was a basket maker. I was too young to learn the skills from her, but I still remembered her weaving baskets. I never imagine that one day I would be weaving baskets myself. On a rainy day, I walked into a cottage in Wattle Park to find a group of ladies weaving baskets. I was very excited, I asked them if I could join the group? They were very welcoming ladies and I joined the group on the spot. I have had many lessons with them and with expert basket makers from the USA, Australia and the UK. I made many baskets in the last 4 years. I gave more than a dozen of them away to friends around the world. Not having finished any quilts lately I thought I would show off some of the baskets I made last year.
This is a stitch basket using New Zealand flax. I stripped the fresh flax leaves and then plaited into a long length. I then started stitching from the base up. New Zealand flax is also very strong after it dries. I lined the inside of the basket with quilt fabric and I use this basket like a hand bag.
This one is called basket over the mold. It made over a styrofoam mold. The main frame came from the leaves of cordyline plant. Cordyline leaf gets very strong when it dries and this is a very strong basket. I used mixed plant fibres such as watsonia leaves, red hot poker, combungi and flex for weaving. This is a very useful basket to take to quilt meetings, picnics or as a work basket. I made one for my daughter-in-law who is a school teacher and she uses it for her classroom works.