This tutorial shows how you can weave patterns like swan (அன்னப் பறவை) or flamingo (செந்நாரை/ மராளம் ) or any design for that matter in baskets. These baskets are very similar to the classic box knot basket but with a small tweak.
26 pieces of wire – 2.65 meters ( 8.75 feet/ scale length) each. This color will be the color of the swan. If you change the swan pattern, you might have to change the number of wire pieces or the length of the wire. This length that I have mentioned above will be enough if your basket has 11 lines of base and is 24 lines high
You will need running wire in both colors.
Weaving base of the basket
Leave 1.3 meters of running wire free and start adding the cut wire pieces one by one using the box knot. If you want a detailed tutorial about weaving a box knot/ adding it to running wire, please check click this link.
Once you have added all the cut pieces, you can leave the same length 1.3 meters and cut the running wire.
For base, I have used blue running wire. I am doing this because I want 2 of the sides of the basket to have pure blue knots.
Check each knot before proceeding to next row to see if the wire going up and down from each knot is the same length (meaning whether the knot is placed right in the middle of each cut piece).
Mark the middle row with a knot as shown below so you can identify the middle row easily. The row that we finished just now is the middle row of the base. All future rows will be added above and below this row.
So add 5 rows above and 5 rows below this row.
The base has been completed.
Note: Do not cut the running wire of the last row alone. We will continue weaving the wall of the base with that.
Weaving walls of the base
As mentioned above, do not cut the running wire for the last row of base. Instead continue weaving around to the next side and complete one full round.
All 4 corners will have triangle shaped holes. One corner is visible in the picture above.
One full round has been completed.
Now it is time to start weaving the design. Start the next round around the base and weave till you reach the long side of the base.
I have added a knot in the wire to remind me when a round completes and next round starts.
Now we have reached the long side of the base.
Follow the pattern that you have chosen. It need not be a swan or flamingo. It can be any design. For the swan design, I have to weave 5 knots with blue running wire and then add the second running wire color (white).
Once you add the second running wire, the knots will be pure white in color.
Both running wires will travel together till the entire design is done so don’t cut them.
As you can see above, the blue running wire is now traveling behind this knot.
So make sure you include that running wire inside each knot.
Tuck in the short end of the white running wire in a zigzag manner.
Continue adding more white knots as per the pattern chosen.
Blue wire is traveling along nicely.
Follow the pattern and change running wire color to blue.
Simply bring the blue running wire to the front and take the white running wire back and you will be able to now use the blue running wire to weave knots.
One side is complete.
For the next side, there are 3 options.
- No design
- Same swan pattern
- Some other design.
I wanted to experiment with another pattern so created a flamingo pattern. Weave till you reach the next side and start weaving the pattern.
Swan is growing on one side
Flamingo is growing on the other.
Once you finish all the rounds, weave 2 or 3 rounds with blue running wire.
Then tuck in the excess wire as shown below. Note how the last round is pulled inside.
I liked the swan pattern better than the flamingo. But it was fun experimenting with both patterns. So all is good.