Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Rope Basket Tutorial

Some of you have asked how to make the Chunky Rope Baskets that I have blogged about in the past...here is a tutorial that I hope will help reveal some of the mystery of constructing them.  This is a completely self taught project...so please forgive me if my instructions are unclear.  But I say that to say there's no real rules here...just play with it and have fun.  Please let me know if you have any questions...I'm happy to help.

First start by purchasing 1" Cotton Cording...listed below.  For a basket like the one above...I suggest about 10 yards.

Cut a pile of 2 1/2" x width of fabric fabric strips.
Cover end of cording as shown.

Wrap about 5" of cording...wrap fabric around cording...do not twist cording around fabric.

Fold over end of cording so that you start to form a bottom for your basket. An oval will make an oval basket... a round bottom will make a round basket.  The bigger the bottom, the bigger the basket.

Wrap fabric strip over the top of the cording including the cording that was folded over.

Bring the fabric strip up thru the center.  Pull the fabric tight towards you, and continue wrapping fabric around cording. 
I use a wooden chopstick to push the fabric thru the center.

Continue wrapping the cording and at 2" intervals (closer together at corners) wrap the fabric around the previous cording and up thru the center of the two cordings.  The goal is to make it look like it is knotted at the 2" intervals...it's not really a knot, it's just how it is wrapped.

NOTE:  You will have to join strips of fabric for this project...you can do this by making 1" slits at the bottom of both ends of the strips and link the strips together.  Please let me know if that doesn't make sense and I can take some photos to explain.

Continue this until you have the base as big as you want. To start building the sides...stack the cording on top of the previous cording...either straight up and down for steep sides or stack it more gradual for a softer side.
When you are ready to end your basket...cut cording at an angle and wrap fabric around end of cording...it takes a bit of finagling...then wrap fabric back thru the previous cording, tie a knot and hide the ends.

I was able to find one pattern listed below for this technique at Greenbaum's Quilted Forest...give them a call to place an order...they have free shipping.
I notice that the bag is made a little differently in that the 'linked' intervals don't look like knots.  I like mine to look like a knot...just preference.


  1. Looks cool! I'm not quite ready to tackle something like this yet :)

  2. Interesting method. I was thinking of wrapping the cord and then stitching together, but this seems much easier.

  3. how much fabric in total did you use?? I want to make but idk how much fabric to buy!


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