Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Egg basket

This egg basket was made using a plastic mayonnaise jar, scraps of fabric, and a wire hanger. I also used a knife, utility scissors, wire cutters, needle nose pliers, and a crochet hook with an eye on the end like they use for making rugs. The techniques used are weaving (of course) and macrame.

First, I cut the screw band off the top of the mayonnaise jar as close as possible leaving as much jar as I could. It does not matter if your cuts are perfectly straight.

Second, I used the utility scissors to cut the jar in parallel lines approximately 1/2 inch apart.

Third, fan out the strips. The jar wants to maintain its shape, but it is too difficult to work with it like this. The best method I came up with is to push the strips down one by one while applying pressure at the base of the strip on the bottom of the jar with your other hand. Keep going around and pressing until the jar looks like the picture to the left.

Fourth, tear, or cut, fabric into strips about 2 inches wide. Working from the inside, slip a strip of fabric in between two of the plastic strips leaving a tail about 2 inches long on the out side of the jar.

Fifth, use the weaving technique going inside then outside as you move around the jar. I held the fabric strip with my right hand and with my left hand I pressed the plastic strips down, turned the base of the jar counterclockwise, and pulled the fabric in with the tips of my fingers.

1. cut slits in the end of both the one that is attached to the basket, and the one you are joining on. This slit should be about 3/4" long and no closer than 1/2" from the end.

2. Slip the end of the strip attached to the basket through the slit cut in the new piece.

3. Slip the other end of the new piece through the slip in the piece that is attached to the basket.

4. Pull the strip through the slit.

Pull tight on both strips (but not so tight that the fabric tears through). This makes a fast, easy joining that does not involve sewing, and is not nearly as bulky as a knot.

Continue weaving in and out til you reach about one inch from the top.

Sixth, secure the fabric strip in place with a pin so it won't unravel your work. Bend the plastic strips down over the last row of fabric. That means if the fabric strip is on the inside of the strip, bend plastic to the inside over the fabric strip, if the weave is to the outside, bend plastic to the outside covering fabric. Use needle nose pliers to pinch the fold of the plastic, then tuck the tail of the plastic under the fabric strip on the previous row.

Seventh, thread the tail end of the fabric strip through the eye of the rug hook needle (a bodkin or other elastic guide could also be used).Wrap the fabric strip over the top, covering the top of a plastic strip. Push needle through the basket between plastic strips under two rows of weaving and pull it tight. Work all the way around the basket in one direction, then reverse direction and wrap all the way around again in the same manor. This will insure the bent down portion to the plastic strips are secure and the basket won't come apart when weight is put in the basket.

Eighth, open up the coat hanger (mine is a red plastic covered hanger) and use wire cutters to cut it in half. Use needle nose pliers to turn down both ends. Tie two fabric strips together with a square knot leaving tails of about 6 inches. Slip knot under the bent down portion of one end of the wire. Use pliers to pinch the wire down. This will hold the knot securely. Use macrame technique to cover the wire.

Shape the handle, put the handle ends to the inside of basket and feed tails through the basket making sure that you go around one plastic strip. Tie securely with a square knot. weave tails in.

Decorate with ribbon bows if desired (I used hot glue to attach this bow). These baskets are a good projects for kids to help with. They can be made for Easter, or for other occasions. For instance, you could use red and green fabric and make Christmas baskets, use the person's favorite color and make baskets for Birthdays, or Mother's Day or just a thank you gift . If you fill the basket with cookies or some other goodies you make yourself it will make it all that much more special.


  1. i think this one is really cute to. how much would you sell these for. i know baskets are a dime a dozen but sometimes people are willing to pay more for quality and uniqueness. Put a bunny candy jar in it and a couple of plastic eggs and you have a center piece for an easter table.

  2. I have made 3 of them all together now and each one takes about 3 hours to make. However if I were to sell them I would probably put 9.00 on them, if I added lots of extra decorations the price would be higher. I am going to try one out of a coffee can and red, white and blue fabric (and no handle) that will be large enough to hold hot dog and hamburger buns for a Fourth of July party. I might even go wild and make a tiny little red, white and blue quilt to be used as a cover for the buns.

  3. i had planned on making some with just tin cans but i don't have enough time but i can give you all the tin cans you could every want

  4. we used butter dishes but you have to use twilling instead of the basic in and out or the dish shows. the kids had a great time

  5. had a little problem with the baskets. as the kids hunted easter eggs and the baskets got heave the started to tilt and dump the eggs out the sides. i was looking at the store bought baskets some of the other children had and the handle runs all the way to the bottom so i think it can be fixed but weaving the handle all the way to the bottom of the basket. when i make more i will let you know