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tickled that we are back onl line: the grapefruit basket


From: Randy Menninghaus (india99_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sun Jul 13 2003 - 04:01:38 PDT

Earlier this summer I had my Art teacher friends over for an end of the
year celebration. I had heard of the "grapefruit" basket and asked a friend to
demonstrate. I had a variety of basket making bits that some one had donated
. This was an amazing little craft experience. The success level was
very high. Large grapefruits work best, and I suspect watermelons,
cantaloupes and other fruits and veggies, large rocks etc. that have an
interesting shape. You wet the reed. We used a lot
of fairly thin round reed cut in about 2 yard lengths. One begins by
 looping around the center of the grape fruit ( I would pull and go
in opposite direction) There is no traditional weaving but following the
form and just trying to get enough tension on the reed., You can go under and
over certain intersections I found I use a half hitch to gain tension.
When you run out of reed tuck it in and start again. After a
while you begin to leave abut a 1/3 unwoven. that's where you pop the grapefruit
out. you can take it out as soon as you have enough structure that
there seems to be a form started. We used a variety of other materials
yarns, ribbons, dried plant materials feathers. We used really large rocks as
well, but you had to really flex to get the rock out. Once the basket is
free from the grapefruit... you go in and weave as much as you like I
picked intersections and did spider webby things. I would recommend getting two
or three people together and experimenting. I have some jpg's available and
could send images to people who would like visuals. I am planning to use
it as a nontraditional basket with my Art 3 students this fall. Randy in
central Maine