There are many ways to weave a grass basket. The following technique is just one of many. Every basket weaver has his/her own preferred method. You don’t have to do everything like it says in this tutorial. Grass basket weaving is so simple, you will get nice results no matter what. Dare to be creative!
Collect an armful of grass. You can use it as is or simply let it dry for a while. The longer the blades, the better. It works with shorter blades of grass too, but it might take a little longer.
Start with a small bundle of long grass blades. The bundle should be about as thick as your finger. Tie it together with the yarn on one end.
Wrap the yarn around the end a few fingers width.
Start to coil the grass like a snail. It can be a bit stubborn in the beginning. Maybe it helps if you loosen (or tighten) the yarn a little bit more.
Form a tight loop and tie it with the yarn.
Now the fun begins! The grass is coiled and stitched together with the yarn. (I like to twist the grass as I coil it, to give the basket more density, but this step is optional)
At this point you will need a long, blunt needle. (buy here*) To stitch the grass, wrap the yarn around the loose grass and stitch down through the grass coil just underneath the wrapped yarn. This is how the grass basket will get its stability.
The new yarn always passes through the grass and underneath the yarn. If the gaps between the stitches get too wide, just make an additional stitch.
Your bundle of grass should have the same thickness all throughout the basket. If it gets too thin, add a few new blades. It works best, if you hide the new blades in between the old ones. So the ends will stay hidden.
Work your way around the coil. Add new blades if your bundle gets too thin. Make extra stitches if the gaps get too wide.
Continue with the coil until the base has the diameter of the basket you want to make.
Take a look at your grass coil from both sides. Usually the stitches on the topside form a nice, neat pattern. The stitches underneath look a little more messy.
Before I start with the sides of the basket, I turn the coil upside down. That way the “neater” side will later be on the outside of the basket and the messier one will be on the inside.
Now you can start with the sides. For this you simply stop sewing the rounds next to each other, but start sewing them on top of each other. In the first round you can stitch them together a little off-center for a softer transition.
Always make sure that you grass basket is even. Sometimes you’ll have to bend the basket a little. If the walls are higher or lower in some places, it can help to stitch down the grass a little tighter (or looser) in that area.
If you are happy with the size of the grass basket, you can stop adding new blades into your bundle.
Once your bundle starts to get very thin, you can sew up the ends slightly on the inside of your grass basket.
Secure everything with a tight knot and cut off the excess blades.
And that is all you have to do to weave a simple grass basket! It is surprisingly sturdy and keeps its shape even months later. Grass basket weaving is so much fun, that this will surely be just one of many more baskets! 🙂
I made a whole set of them. 🙂
You can also use this techniques to make different shapes of baskets. If you want a more rounded basket, you need to stitch the rows together slightly off-center. This way you can direct the shape in- or outwards as you wish.
Try to use different materials. Straw works really well. You can get amazing results with raffia (buy here*), rushes or other plant fibers. Even wood wool can be worked into a rustic basket.
Have a look at our new tutorial if you want to know how to make a lid for your basket: Link >>
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