Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Making a model of a hot air balloon

The first stages in making the basketry model of a hot air balloon were comparitively easy. I made a standard basket, using the English stake and strand method of weaving. The only complication was remembering to insert the four "struts" early in the process to connect the basket to the balloon so that they became part of the baskets base as well as its sides. The photo here shows the finished balloon's basket with its "struts."

The more complicated stages came as I began to weave the balloon. This is spherical of course. I had never woven a spherical basket before! So, the usually flat base was woven so it curved up.

As the curve developed, I was able to place the rounded basket onto a stainless steel bowl and place a rock inside it for weight. With this it became easier to manipulate the cane into the desired shape.

Once I had completed the spherical balloon and the beginning of its neck, I then taped "spacers" to four of the stakes. These would then form the spaces into which the struts from the basket would be inserted.

The completed ballon. The processes worked.

And, Annie, the librarian, gets ready for her first ride in the balloon.