Monday, 17 March 2014

Woven Paper Easter Baskets

The idea from these baskets is from my mum. She was a new entrant teacher (first year of school teacher). Every year for special events or holidays, she would make these baskets for her pupils. Usually at Easter and Christmas time. I would often get roped into making the baskets as they can be a little tricky for 5 year olds to master on their own! I think the original idea came from her Danish friend as I believe they are a common decoration in Denmark. Depending on the type of paper or card you use, they can be very sturdy, so hold lots of Easter eggs or other treats. They would also make great party favour bags-- you could even get guests to make their own. 

I've tried to make the instructions and photos as simple as possible, but really it's just a matter of doing a few before you really get the hang of it.  If you don't feel confident with weaving, I would suggest practising on some ordinary white printer paper first, so you have an idea of how the pieces of paper will weave together. 

Firstly gather your materials:

Materials Needed:

Coloured Paper or thin card (paper is easier to weave if children are making their own)
Extra paper or materials for handle (ribbon, string etc)

How to make a Woven Paper Easter Basket:

 Take two sheets of paper, and fold each of them width- and length ways:

Cut each piece of paper along the longest edge. You will now have four pieces of paper, enough to make 2 baskets. 

Take one piece of paper and fold in half across the shortest length. With the folded edge facing you, measure approximately 4cm from the top of the paper and rule a pencil line. This will be the top edges of your basket. Using your pencil and ruler, divide your paper into 5 more or less equal lengths. If you have a good eye, cut the paper from the folded edge to the pencil line. If you like to be precise or need help with cutting straight (me!), rule lines down the paper. If you are using an A4 sheet, each section is about 2.4cm. Then cut along each of your ruled lines. 

Once you have done this for each piece of paper, you are ready to start weaving. You can get rid of the pencil lines by folding your piece of paper back the other way, so the pencil lines are inside.
*NB* It's really important that when you are cutting the lengths, you are cutting from the bottom folded edge. These folds once woven create the base of the basket. This may seem very obvious, but thought worth mentioning in case you're not a crafty person!

To begin weaving, have your two papers next to each other with the cut folded sides facing away from you. Take one colour (I am using the yellow to start, so will use this as my instruction) and insert the first strip of the blue, inside of the yellow strip. It's important that the folded part of the blue is fully inside the yellow. (You might find the pictures for the second row help you to visualise this technique). Continue in this method alternating between weaving inside and outside, creating a checkered effect. Once you have finished this first row, push it up as high as you can towards the top of the basket. It needs to be right up so you can fit the other rows underneath. 
*NB*It helps to start the first row low down at the bottom of the basket, and then push the row up when you finish. This is especially true when you're using a stiff material.

For the second row, you want to weave in the opposite way that you started the first row. So if you started with an outside weave on the top row, do an inside weave for this first strip for the second row. It may be a little tricky to get started and you will need to fold your paper up to manipulate it a fair bit to get it right inside the strip. Again. this is especially so when you are using card. You can see in the photo that I have almost folded the yellow in half in order to get it right inside the blue. Once the first strip is through, it gets a bit easier. 

Once you get further down, it starts to get harder to weave as you run out of room. When you finish weaving the third row, you really need to fiddle with all the rows to get them up as high as you can to be able to fit the final row. This is probably where you will get stuck if your strips are not perfectly even. I'd say mine were 99%, but I still had to tweak it a fair bit!

Below is the finished third row. It looks as thought there's no room for the final row, but there is! If you push everything up a little bit and as you weave in the final row, you will have room!

And here the weaving is complete!

You will notice that it's not completely perfect! And if you look really closely, you can even see a tiny little tear at the end of one row! I'm sure I have some sort of disclaimer about not being a perfectionist. I would say however, using a more flexible paper, and also a larger size piece of paper makes the weaving a lot easier. Besides, if you are getting kids to make these, you can guarantee there will be a few mistakes and rips and tears and creases and crinkles!
So you will know you have made your basket correctly when you can open it up and it looks like a cone. 

If you can't do this, or have a few holes, you have made it wrong! Now you are ready to add a handle and fill with treats!

You can use ANYTHING for a handle. Coordinating card looks great, or another colour card. You could also use ribbon or string. Just use something sturdy so that it will be able to carry the weight of the contents! Add your handle between the little "v" where the yellow and blue card intersects. I used a staple to secure mine but you could use a hot glue gun or any other adhesive. 

What a perfect little basket for Easter Egg hunting! 

For the one above, I used a circular shaped bowl to trace around the top of the basket. Once I cut around the tracing, it became a nice heart shape. This would look great for a Valentines Basket!

 If you give these a go, I'd love to see your versions! Post them here on or my Facebook page here or post them to Instagram and tag me @itsmariemade or #itsmariemade (You can also follow all my happenings here as well!)

If you use this idea on your blog or reproduce in any way, please give credit where credit is due, link it up to:


  1. Look at you Mrs Paper Craft! Great tutorial - I remember making these at school - awesome that you even remembered how to make them!

  2. Oh that brings back memories! We have gold and red ones at home that my mum made.

    1. Mum was doing them for years and years so I'm sure the idea was shared around a lot!