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Beekeeping - basket weaving 
5th-Jan-2005 03:47 pm

Beesuit - Faceplate Take II

having obtained some rattan canes of various sizes to experiment with, and work out technique, I sat down and had a play.

I started by soaking the canes in HOT water. As the water soaks in and heats the cane it makes them very plyable and eases the weaving process.  after about 10-15 minutes i took one of them out and had a play. i was able to wrap a 5-7mmm cane around my index finger approx 3 times easily, and i took this as a sign that it was time to start.

I began the actual weave with 3 (5-7mm) canes side by side, then laying another 3 90 degrees to the ones below. i then used a 1-2mm cane to bind the cross together. the knotting was simple boyscout square lashing, as this is what i knew how to do. it held well and look aesthetically pleasing so i continued.

Then continuing on with the 1-2mm canse i spread the cross and using an 'under and over' technique  went around until the cane ran out. This formed, and held, the lot in place but i noticed that with the smaller cane there wasn't a whole heap of visibility. i decided to add further larger canes to see how that looked.


With the larger canes I added 12 - 1 between each leg of the cross. it was fairly difficult to manage, and hold inplace, as all the canes where still fairly warm, and dripping wet. peserving (and muttering under my breath) got me there though, and i was able to start following the over/under weave around, forming the basic shape.
This final part was fantastically easy and i was amazed to notice that i could have continued to add a little tension, and pulled the whole lot up into walls (thus forming a basket).
I finished the base plate off and tucked the ends back into the cross legs, to hold them in place.

6th-Jan-2005 01:32 am (UTC)
(Deleted comment)
6th-Jan-2005 02:02 am (UTC)
7th-Jan-2005 01:14 pm (UTC)
I can't help but think that perhaps a bee could get through that, particularly an angry one :).
14th-Jan-2005 06:46 am (UTC)
To hold the wicker in place while working, I would suggest using large bulldog clips, or possibly even clothespegs.

Well done!
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