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Shaker Cat’s Head

December 12, 2010

This is a traditional shaker basket that was typically made with a mold. It’s possible to make it freehand (as I did) with some persistent shaping. This kind of basket would never have color, a patterned weave, or a fancy handle– the elegant shape is supposed to be more than enough to make it special. I tend to agree.

It starts with a simple square bottom, the 1/2″ stakes woven rather tightly.

Base of the cat's head

Then, as I wove each side of each and every row, I pushed up on the center and pulled down on the sides. This causes the base of every side to bow, giving the basket pointy corners. When the basket is inverted, these look like cat’s ears– hence, cat’s head basket.

Shaping at the bottom

I allowed the sides to flare out for a while as I continue the weaving.

Cat's head sides flaring

Then, when I reached my desired circumference, I bent the stakes in and pulled the weaver tighter, causing the basket to curve back in at the very top.

See the sides coming back in again?

Then it’s just a rim, a handle, and a beautiful result!

Finished basket

Finished basket

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Liz permalink
    December 13, 2010 6:35 pm

    i love these kitty baskets. i love their pointy corners and wavy body.

    =) good work, as always!

  2. December 13, 2010 8:44 pm

    I love the wavy effect on this one. You’ve certainly learned a lot very quickly. I can’t wait to find out which one I’ll get…!

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