Commissions and Bespoke Baskets

Below are details of some of the baskets I have made as commissions.  I enjoy making unusual things, and have made these using just simple sketches and details provided by the customer.  I am not currently making commissions due to looking after my young family full time.

This is a dove release basket made from white willow. It is to be used by Dove Celebration for releasing doves at weddings and other events. It therefore needed a small door at the back for putting the doves into the basket (see top picture). The doves will then be released by lifting the larger lid on the top of the basket. It also has two handles on the sides for carrying the basket.

Here is a picture of the basket being used at a nursey school:
doves
dove basket
dove basket

I was asked to make a copy of an eel trap displayed in the Bedford museum. I recognised the style of eel trap as that made by the deceased fenman, Ernie James. I was lucky enough to be able to borrow an original Ernie James eel trap from a friend, which is the trap on the left. I made a copy of this trap, which is shown on the right. As the client wanted the trap to look more medieval, I made the trap solely using brown willow in a variety of naturally occurring colours.

This is a basket made to hold a set of Medieval bagpipes. It is slightly bulged at the bottom to hold the bag, and has a hinged lid and fastening. A braid shoulder strap is attached through the holes left in the top and the bottom of the basket for this purpose.
These three large laundry baskets are made from buff willow with finger hole handles on the sides.laundry baskets

On the top is a copy of an eel/fish trap illustrated in the Luttrel Psalter (shown on the bottom). The eel trap is made in open weave out of brown willow. 

These are six arrow baskets I made for Dragon Archery, based in Devon. We developed a bespoke and exclusive design for the company which includes a spiral weave from the middle to the top of the basket. The baskets are made from brown willow, but there is colour variation between them due to using different varieties of willow for the weaving. The client wanted the baskets to show that each was hand made and individual, while all being of the same design.

This is a basket made to fit inside the frame attaching to the front of an old fashioned trade bicycle. It is made from buff willow, with finger holes in the sides so that it can be lifted out of the frame easily.

This is a basket made to fit the boot space of a Smart car, in order to keep the contents of the boot from rolling all over the place. It is woven from buff willow, and has a thermos holder made from two willow loops woven into one of the inside corners.

This eel trap was made for the Cambridge Vikings group. It is made from brown willow, and the two parts are tied together with leather thong. From my research there did not seem to be just one design for eel traps and this was based on fish and eel trap pictures I had seen. The two parts need to separate in order to get the eels out of the trap once you have caught them!

This picnic basket was made to fit into the small boot space of a convertible sports car. It is long and thin and fits the space available exactly. It is made from buff willow and has willow hinges, handle and catch. 

toy basket This bike basket was required to be smaller than standard bike baskets, to fit this particular model of bike but not to hinder the ability to fold down the handle bars when the bike is being collapsed. The basket is 'D' shaped and is made from buff willow.
This toy basket is made from 9-end rush plait with 5-end rush plait handles. It will eventually be lined with white calico. rush toy basket

This is a baby's cot basket made from white willow. It has two handles on the sides for easy carrying and a hooded top to protect the baby from the sun.