Crochet a Wool Basket
Wool baskets are gorgeous but I never made one because I dislike how they flop over. Of course, I learned the hard way when I had bought a really perfect cloth laundry bin that matched all my little bins and was the right blue and had laundry embroidered on the front. I loved it. Unfortunately, it was way too soft sided to be useful. It simply would not stand up, I eventually got fed up, tossed it and went back to old ugly plastic.
I am cleaning out my craft room and came across a whole garbage bag of unused wool, pretty ridiculous I know. Determined to use up the wool, I decided to make some baskets and figure out a way to make them solid enough to stand and not slouch.
Here are the guidelines I used to design this basket strong enough to stand up:
Make the crochet stitches as tight as possible
Use single crochet where I can
Use heavy wool for strength
Don’t make the baskets too big
Use some sort of fabric stiffener
Give the basket a brim for strength
Crochet Basket Pattern
A crochet basket is quite simple to crochet and a great way to use up some leftover wool.
I used Wool-Ease Thick and Quick Lion Brand wool and a size 6.5 mm crochet hook. Each basket took two skeins.
Start with a magic circle. Then complete 6 single crochet (sc) in the circle.
row 1 – 2 sc in each stitch around (12 stitches), join with a slip stitch.
row 2 – Chain (ch) 1, 1 sc in the first stitch, then 2 sc in next stitch. repeat this pattern around, (18 stitches) join with slip stitch.
row 3 – Ch 1, 1 sc in first two stitches, 2 sc in next stitch, repeat this pattern around (24 stitches), join with slip stitch.
row 4 – Ch 1, 1 sc in first three stitches, 2 sc in next stitch, repeat this pattern around (30 stitches, join with slip stitch.
row 5 – Ch 1, 1 sc in first four stitches, 2 sc in next stitch, repeat this pattern around (36 stitches), join with slip stitch.
row 6 – Ch 1, 1 sc in first five stitches, 2 sc in next stitch, repeat this pattern around (42 stitches), join with slip stitch
row 7 – Ch 1, 1 sc in first six stitches, 2 sc in next stitch, repeat this pattern around (48 stitches), join with slip stitch.
I stopped here, but if you want a larger basket you can continue increasing your base size accordingly. Now you will start making the sides
row 8 – Ch 1, 1 sc in the back loop of each stitch around (48 stitches) join with slip stitch.
row 9 – Ch 2 half double crochet (hdc) in each stitch, join with slip stitch.
row 10 – Ch 1, 1 sc in the back loop of each stitch around, join with slip stitch.
Repeat until the basket is the height you like.
Complete two more rows and tie off.
Fold the top two rows over, using a yarn needle sew the flap over to form a brim.
If you wish to add a bow, weave a double thickness of wool through the basket brim. Starting and finishing at the front of the basket.
Sugar Starch Recipe
It would take a whole bottle of fabric stiffener to stiffen this basket. I use commercial fabric stiffener while making formed flowers and it stiffens very well. However, I want these baskets to be washable so I chose to stiffen them with sugar star instead.
In a small pot add 1 cup of sugar and 1/2 cup water. Cook over low medium heat stirring constantly until the sugar water is clear. Do Not Let It Boil. Set aside to cool a bit.
Dampen your basket in water, pat out the excess, pour the lukewarm sugar over the basket and work the sugar through coating all fibers.
Place over a form and let dry. I used an inverted bowl with a cake pan.
My basket took more than a full day to dry. Check on your basket from time to time and rearrange parts of it if needed.
I think these baskets are perfect for winter decor. I am using these to store part of my wool stash but I think they would be really nice snuggled around plant pots in the winter.
Winter decor is all about cozy, with some simple supplies you can convert any colour candleholder into a cozy vignette.