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Thursday, August 2, 2012

A Tisket, A Tasket: A Double Pie Basket

Double Pie Basket

I don't have any Green and Yellow Baskets. However, I do have some handmade ones, all natural colored.

My friend Bill Kelly from Rainbow City, Alabama, makes these from beginning to end. He cuts the white pine from the forest, cuts the trunk into boards and then cuts the strips for weaving.  I have known him and his wife, Cora,  for about 30 years. We did craft shows in Huntsville with the same spot next to each other for about six years. This year was the first year they have not been in the Blooming Festival in Cullman.

If these baskets are not in sunlight, they remain this pale color. The darker strips are heart wood. Bill said the only care of these in to let them sit out in the dew overnight. They need just a bit of moisture in the night about once each year. But, you must bring them in before the sun shines on them.

This basket is called a Double Pie basket. As Bill explained that women carried two pies to church and socials, so they needed a basket to hold both pies. Now, these plates were easier to get to than my pie pans. But, you can see the size of the basket. I have used this basket, not for two pies, but for several dishes to take to potluck dinners.

This holds my bananas

Bill and his Cora gave me this basket when I earned my first degree in 1993, my BA in English. It is perfect for holding bananas. I keep a wooden banana slice and a mango that I got when I went to Mexico.

Today, I was taking them outside the clean them. It started raining, so I could not clean my other three baskets.

NO, I don't like Longaberger baskets at all.

More about Bill. He is 82 now. He met Cora when he was 15 and walked several miles each evening to see her. He knew how many fence posts there were in his nightly walk. He laughed and said he got tired of walking and married her over the objections of both families when he turned 16.

Your turn
Don't you like knowing a little of the history of crafts persons from whom you acquire handcrafted items.  Do you know how to make baskets?  Do you know Bill or Cora Kelly? She was on the ciy council about 15 years ago.

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