The dog tail method, seriously?


The Indian Blanket is probably the most favorite basket that I've created.  I'm not sure if it's the black background or the dynamic colors that are woven into the basket but I never get tired of this one.

I think the best point about the Indian Blanket is that it can be used as a palette for so many weaving designs. Sort of like a scrap quilt this basket gives you the ability to make each basket unique every time you weave it.

If you've been wanting to learn some different color work designs it's a great project to undertake.  

Starting off with the checkerboard pattern using a 4 rod rand (which is a technical term for 4 weavers). FOUR ROD RAND sounds daunting but like most things in basketry once you learn it it's really no big deal.

  1. Beginning with 4 weavers (in this case blue/green) one behind each stake in succession.
  2. Weave in front of 2 stakes, behind 2 stakes, and out to the front of the basket.  All stakes should remain in succession behind 4 stakes with 4 ends coming towards you to the front of the basket.
  3. ALWAYS weave with the weaver all the way to the left (right handed weavers) and one at a time.
  4. Continue for three to four rows of weaving.  You’ve just completed the first part of the checkerboard pattern.
  5. Cut your weavers leaving about a 1/2 inch on the basket.  Change out your blue weavers to green and your green weavers to blue so that the next section will be the opposite color.
  6. Use the dog tail method to begin your new weavers in the correct place.  That 1/2" that you left on the basket ...that's the dog tail.   Lift the dog tail UP and insert the thermometer (which is the new weaver that you want to begin with).  I know, you'll NEVER do this technique again without thinking about the dog tail, but then you'll remember it as well.
  7. Repeat steps 1-4 above.  VOILA!  Checkerboard pattern.  If all else fails, watch the video.





Jill Choate
Jill Choate


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