This tutorial shows how you can weave this woven lampshade. Technically, this is a tall lunchbox basket that was once used in India to carry multi-tiered lunch boxes/ tiffin carriers.
Purpose of this tutorial
I chose this project for two reasons.
- I once saw a shop selling rattan lampshade that was woven using the box knot/square knot. Rattan is opaque and plastic wire is translucent. So I got curious and this is my experiment to see how much light passes through plastic wire. Ikea sells lamp bases and cords that can be used in case you are interested to weave your own lampshades.
- This project is done without running wire. A basket’s base is easier to weave when running wire is used. However, when we weave a basket diagonally (cross weaving), the base is a little complicated. The method that I am going to show in this tutorial is ONLY for square base. For baskets with rectangular base, I will show two methods in future tutorials.
You have to know to weave the box knot. Please check this tutorial for box knot if you are new to weaving.
Since this is an experiment to test how much light passes through wire, I chose dark and light shades. As expected, the dark shades blocked more light but they did add to the beauty. If the basket had been fully dark/ fully light, it might not have been nice.
This is the formula – If you want your base to be 8 knots long and 8 knots wide, you have to cut enough wire for 16 knots. So you will need a total of 36 wire pieces (2 used per knot). There should be even number of knots (8 in this demo) on each side of the square base.
To make lampshade/ lunchbox basket just like mine, cut 36 pieces of wires. Each will measure 2.75 meters. Cut 8 pieces in each color.
Make knots and keep them ready as shown below.
To make the first line of the base, keep two knots near each other as shown below. The lines intersect above and below. Make knots with them.
Continue adding more knots till you have used up all the knots.
Now, lay the base flat and you will see wires from adjacent knots intersecting each other. Knot them together.
Once your are done knotting every intersecting wire, you will end up with a diamond with wires coming out from all 4 sides.
Don’t worry that this square/ diamond is bigger than the size of the base that you wanted. Once we turn the 4 corners, the corners will bend up and this will be the actual size of the base.
This is how the big square will get folded up.
Now find the 2 middle wires in each of the 4 sides.
Once we start turning the corner, it might be difficult to find them. So make a temporary knot as shown above now itself.
Next make a square knot with the two middle wires. A triangle shaped gap will be formed below this knot.
You can see that one wire is travelling left and another is travelling right while the rest are travelling away from you. Use those two wires as running wire and make knots using them and the other wires on their side.
They both have traveled from the middle to the end now as shown by the two arrows.
Next you will see two more wires intersecting each other in the middle.
Make a knot with them and now use them to make knots with other wires on their side.
After 2 rows, you can clearly see that the corner has turned.
We have to repeat this on all 4 sides of the base.
After turning the two corners, the base will look like this.
View from another angle.
All 4 corners have been turned.
Continue weaving by making knots with wires that intersect each other.
Basket/ lampshade is growing.
Next we do the unpleasant task of weaving in the ends :D
Tall narrow tiffin carrier basket with square base is ready.
Add a handle and use as lunch box bag or turn it upside down and use as lampshade.