doggie trail

Magazine Basket

Today is our first DIY fun installment! I came across this entry from the 3 R’s blog in my internet travels throughout the week. When I saw this I thought it would be a cute and simple project. I had a couple of flower seed magazines that I felt guilty throwing away that I could use as my medium. How cute would this be as a decorative flower-pot with flowers all over it!?

Project 16 Week 20 - Newspaper Basket As soon as I spotted this project on the Nifty Thrifty Things blog I knew I had to try it.  I dreamt of making big baskets for fabric, small baskets for my jewelry, and on and on. And then I tried it. Lets just say this project has a special place in my heart right now because there were a good 30 minutes last night when I wasn’t sure it would make it out of the hot mess stage!  You all know the one, where the project in your hand looks so differ … Read More

via the 3 R’s blog

My first attempt, well, it was bad. Brett and I tag teamed the directions and attempts for quite a few hours. Just because I had done a number of successful Netflix origami pieces did not mean I was an expert basket weaver. I came to find that there are not many photographer basket weavers that like to blog detailed step by step directions. Plenty of detailed cooking directions… but weaving a basket from paper… not so much.

My second attempt was a test. After many tries to get the sides interweave, I thought the lengths of paper might just be too short. The original directions called for newspaper and I was using a deconstructed magazine. The test was using a four by four base, leaving longer ‘sides’ to work with. Still tedious, but semi-successful. That was it for the night. I would consult with 3R’s blogger, Allison, the following day to vent.

Second attempt

Allison had a brilliant suggestion. Glue those short magazine pieces together to make longer pieces! I love it! We can make it bigger, not smaller, for success! I rushed home tackle the pile of colorful strips once more with renewed vigor. I decided I should photograph my exploits this time. Man, it sure looks like it took a lot less time when I cycle through these pictures.

First I removed the staples from the magazine

The stapless magazine, ready to cut up.

Very important step... sip of vodka based drink.

Cutting the magazine in halfFolding the cut strips in half

And fold againLast fold... dry skin is not requiredGlue stick... you are my friendI can't even focus. How is my skin that dry!?The forman... he's making sure everythings being done right.

I laid out ten of the strips to start weaving.

Let the weaving commence!

I kept going until I had all ten weaved inOnto the sides! I did use the twine step from the original directions this time since I thought I needed all the help I could get. I ended up just removing it after I got the sides together. It did nothing to help.

I found that a really important step here is to make sure that you start this middle weave with the same over under. In my case, I made sure that the one on my right went over the left one on each side.

Now that I have this first side started... reach for vodka

Pulling the sides to tighten it up

I used a lot of bobby pins, but I would recommend using at EVERY turn. Rinse and repeat on all four sides.

And time for more vodka

Break for some homemade butternut squash risotto. That's what Brett was working on while I was folding, glueing, weaving, and pinning.

Intertwine time. This was the step that illuded me last time. I'm taking all four weaved sides and weave them into each other. This got confusing and complicated. I stopped a lot for vodka fuel.

These are the tightening stages. Where time slips away and backs start to cramp up.

Alright, I just found the easier way to post the pictures… Much like the first tedious attempt with this project, there was an easier way. I’m giving up until I can revisit the pictures again.

Basket weaver pictures
This entry was published on February 25, 2011 at 5:20 pm and is filed under DIY. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

4 thoughts on “Magazine Basket

  1. It looks like you got there in the end! I haven’t made my second (or really third) attempt yet but I might tonight. I got sidetracked making lights.

    That flower magazine is certainly a beautiful medium to work with, I think that really helps. I’ll have to sort through my magazine collection looking for the perfect colorful pages, it really gives the finished product an extra zing.

    Good luck, and keep checking back in, I love seeing your results, even if they aren’t always beautiful. I didn’t bother to photograph my first version, it was really pretty sad!!



    • If you’re still having trouble I just found this great tutorial complete with clear photos! Just thought I’d pass it along, it might give your some help and courage for your next attempt!

      Here’s the link:


      • Nice! That link is great! I still didn’t get the fold over right. Now I see how to and the tip for making the base sturdy! I really like the map one.
        I may try out your small straw lamps. I’ve always got a hold of tons of straws.


      • I know, I thought those directions were fantastic and really clear. I’m not sure about the string, I think its a little bit of a wasted step, though I guess maybe it keeps the woven base tightly together?

        The straw lamps are a lot of fun, very simple but pretty tedious. Good for hours (and hours) sitting watching TV because its pretty mindless work, and if you get good at it I found I could fold the straw in half and stick it through the holes with just one hand, leaving the other hand to hold the basket. You do need a lot of straws though, I think I estimated approximately 1100-1500 for the first one I did. Now I can’t quite remember how many I used.

        Good luck!! Allison


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