Saturday, 22 September 2012

Make do and mend

Does your log basket look like this along its top edge? 

Thinking of throwing it out? DON'T.

Make one of these and let's repair it!

Can't remember what this is called but hubby made me one for my basket making course. Take around 18” of coat hanger wire or slightly less diameter if you have it. Bend it in half leaving a gap at the bend of around 1/2” or so. Then seal the two ends together (he used heat shrink wrap) making sure the handle and loop lay flat on the same side. Now you are ready to rock and roll.

First of all, trim any bits of cane sticking out at the top. You don't need to worry too much about the horizontal bits, they will disappear in the weaving.

Choose some scrap fabric and tear or cut into 2”-3” strips. Push the
tool a few inches through the basket from the inside to the outside. Make sure you do this with at least 1” of reasonable willow weaving above.  Apologies for a few slightly blurred photographs.

Thread a corner of material through the loop and gently pull back to the inside of the basket.

Unhook from tool then leave a piece of fabric several inches long hanging on the outside of the basket for this first bit of weaving.

Wrap material over the top of the basket and repeat previous movement to pull it back through to the inside. Ensure material lays reasonably flat and that you hang onto the extra tab of material so you don't pull the whole thing through!

Now keep hanging onto the spare tab of material and pull tightly until your wrapped piece lays flat. Lay the tab of material on top of the basket to ensure it gradually gets covered by subsequent wrapping.

Push the tool through, grab material that should have been flipped onto the outside of the basket, pull it through again to the inside. Pull tightly to begin to cover the tab. Repeat until all the tab and the whole top of the basket is covered.

When you run out of fabric, leave a tab several inches long of the old strip on the outside of the basket, then add a new piece as previously done at the start. Now you need to ensure that both tabs are laid on top of the basket, then continue wrapping. 

When you get to the end go over the beginning then pull the final bit of material through to the inside and up through couple of the top wraps to lock into place. Trim. You can also repair the sides in a similar manner by weaving plaits or twirls of material in and out each vertical piece of willow. The bottom of our basket isn't the best either but hubby attached a round solid mouse mat to the bottom. 

Now you have once again, a functional and dare I say it, a rather lovely looking log basket that should last for quite a bit longer.


  1. What a great way to save a basket and avoid tears on the clothes. Thanks for the
    how to.

  2. What a brilliant tip, safely bookmarked for when the need arises.
    Thank you so much for sharing with us.
    Rose H

  3. Glad you have found it usual. Hadn't thought about using this technique to repair other types of baskets such as a shopping one or a washing one!

  4. Thats a great idea. I wouldnt have thought of it.

  5. Brilliant. I was just going to buy a new basket at great cost. Thanks so much!

  6. Brilliant. Mine looked exactly like yours at the top. Not surprising as I know it to be half a century old! I was just going to drive to Somerset to buy a new one. Now I can have a lovely creative Saturday at home and save a fortune. Thank you so much.

  7. You are all welcome. Glad the instruction is to be of use.


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