Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Make a Sweet May Basket

Traditionally, May baskets are left on doorsteps or hung on door knobs on May first, but this May basket filled with goodies could be a sweet treat for Mother's Day or any time!

To create the basket you will need:

Creative Paperclay® modeling material
plastic snack container
paper bag
plastic wrap
rolling pin
masking tape
craft knife
acrylic paints

First create the form for your basket as follows -

Cut a strip of paper bag about 3 inches wide and long enough to go around the snack container with some overlap.  Fold the long edge of the strip down far enough to fill the rim of the space between the top of the snack container and the "lip" that the lid snaps on to.   Continue folding the strip over until it is thick enough to be flush with the lip of the container.  (If it starts to get too wide from folding, use a fan fold for the remainder).  Attach the paper strip to the top of the container with masking tape.

Cut a second strip of paper about 2 1/2 times the height of the container and long enough to go around twice.  Fold the long edge of the strip down about 1" wrap the strip around the container twice, taping the folded edge flush with the edge of the container, over the thin strip you applied in step 1.  Make a cut from the top edge of the strip to about half way down the container, about every inch along the strip as shown.

Fold the outer layer of strips outward, and roll/fold and tuck the inner layer into the space where the edge of the container slants towards the bottom.

After all the inner strips are folded in, fold one of the outer strips towards the center of the container and trim just slightly longer than the length to the center.  Trim the rest of the outer strips to approximately the same length, then fold and tape the strips to the center all the way around, pulling them taught over the inner strips, and overlapping and smoothing the outer strips as you go.  Trim strips if necessary to avoid large bumps or hard edges.

When all of the strips are folded down and taped, add a layer of plastic wrap and set the completed form aside.

Next roll out a layer of clay to 1/8" thickness or less.  Cut the clay into 3/8" strips, then cover the strips with plastic wrap to keep them pliable as you work. You'll need about 20 strips, 10" long.
Place the form upside down on the work surface and wrap the first strip of clay around the bottom.   Trim off the excess and smooth the seam.

Next lay one strip across the the width of the form in the center, and the next strip over top of that one, making a cross in the center of the form.  Lay one strip on each side of the center cross.

Fold back one side of the cross and lay another strip lengthwise, then lay the strip back down over that one to to create the weave pattern.  Lift the other side of the strip and repeat the process.  Continue alternating the pattern (next time you will be lifting the two long strips, etc.).  When you come to the edges of the container, adjust the strips if necessary to insure that you will be able to complete an over/under wrap around the container - you should have an odd number of strips in each direction.  In my case, 5 strips for the long side, and 7 for the short side.  Use the remaining strips to go completely around the container, lifting the strips in an over/under pattern and alternating the pattern for the next row.

Set the basket aside to dry.  When the clay is dry, carefully remove the form, then remove wrapping from the plastic container.  Put this back in the form, use fresh clay to fill in the spaces around the weaving, and add a strip to the top edge, but make sure you leave enough room around the edges to be able to remove the plastic later for cleaning.

Allow the clay to dry again.  Remove plastic insert, then paint and varnish the clay as desired.
Replace the plastic and fill with goodies!!!  Give it to someone you love.

Thanks for joining me here again!

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1 comment:

Sandee Setliff said...

wow, oh wow, I love your basket!