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The making of a basket, usually from fiber materials.
Basket weaving (or basket making, basketry, or basketmaking) is the process of weaving unspun vegetable fibers into a basket. People with the profession of weaving baskets are basketmakers.
Erdly reports that the oldest known baskets are (according to radiocarbon dating) between 10,000 and 12,000 years old, earlier than any established dates for archeological finds of pottery, and were discovered in Faiyum in upper Egypt. Other baskets have been discovered in the Middle East that are up to 7,000 years old. However, baskets seldom survive, as they are made from perishable materials. The most common evidence of a knowledge of basketry is an imprint of the weave on fragments of clay pots, formed by packing clay on the walls of the basket and firing.
Erdly classifies basketry into five types:
"Coiled" basketry, using grasses and rushes
"Plaiting" basketry, using materials that are wide and ribbon-like, such as palms or yucca
"Twining" basketry, using materials from roots and tree bark. Twining actually refers to a weaving technique where two or more flexible weaving elements ("weavers") cross each other as they weave through the stiffer radial spokes.
"Wicker" and "Splint" basketry, using reed, cane, willow, oak, and ash
Basket weaving utilizes stakes or spokes and weavers. Stakes/spokes usually form the bottom of the basket and become the vertical framework for the basket sides. Round baskets have spokes; other shapes have stakes (Nantucket baskets use the term "staves"). The weavers fill in the sides of a basket.
The parts of a basket are the base, the side walls, and the rim. A basket may also have a lid, handle, or embellishments.
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