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Weaving the Black Ash Hand Bag Basket

Course Overview

This basket, made with black ash splint, is highly functional for everyday needs. It can appear rustic or refined. It can be filled with veggies from the market, groceries from the store, or binders and paperwork for meetings.  It can also be a perfect fit for in-between the bucket seats of most automobiles. The course will start with an in-depth discussion of the harvesting process, including log pounding and material storage.  From there, students will try their hand at splitting using two techniques: hands and a "splitting brake," followed by prepping our pre-selected raw materials using sharp knives, scissors and a slitting gauge. Participants will learn about twill and start/stop weaving, and tension and form as we lay-out and weave our baskets.  After drying, we will construct the rim system, prep thicker splint for handles, and finally, wrap the handles with choice splint. The finished basket will measure approximately 4" x 13" at the base, 9" x 16" at the opening, with a height of 11".  With handles attached, this brings the overall height of the basket to 17". Weighing in at just under a pound, it will be capable of carrying up to ten pounds quite comfortably. Note, this project requires some hand strength to complete.

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