To make a stair basket I start with my pattern notes. These show the shape of the proposed basket and the dimensions of the various elements. From these dimensions I then cut the cane to size. For example, for the 'LONG SIDE' of the basket I need cane that is 66" long. This length is made up of 16.75" for the full depth of the basket, 8.25" for the width of the lower stair, 8.75" for the height of the stair, 8.25" for the width of the second stair, and 8" for the height of the second stair. Add to this two 8" sections for the weaving in of the top/border and you have the 66" total.
The tools I use are simple at the beginning stage. A ceramic tile to hold down the weavers as I interweave the horizontal and vertical sections, a tape measure, a straight edge ruler against which to bend the cane, scissors and a wooden implement to lift up cane so I can place ends beneath it.
To weave the base I used 1/2" and 3/4" flat cane dyed with coffee coloured dylon dye that was soaked to become more pliable.
The woven base is shown here with the 3/4" fillers tucked away.
The customer asked that I use seagrass as weavers. At this stage I have woven ten rows of seagrass for the base part of the stair basket. This base will sit on the lower stair.