A basket is a wooden container which is made of strong stems and is usually made of a mixture of materials, such as wood, wicker, bamboo, or even cane. Most baskets are crafted from plant fibers, while other materials like metal wire, horsehair, or plastic can also be used. A basket may be simply a box-like container but baskets have an infinite number of uses. They can carry almost anything, from fruits to laundry detergent to fresh produce to eggs. Many people use baskets for more than just carrying things; they are elegant display containers and they make very attractive gifts for a myriad of occasions.
The process of basket weaving dates back to Native America times, when it was used to transport food and supplies. The Native American tribes had different types of tools and they made and used baskets as tools to carry water and other objects. Basketry became an important trade item among Native American tribes. These early baskets were usually hand woven and they could be decorated with feathers, beads, twigs, leaves, flowers, animal skins and other natural materials.
Basket-makers in the Native American Indian culture had to use special basket-making processes that took time to produce. In fact, there were some basket-makers who could only produce a single basket daily because they were harvesting a large number of hides that had to be collected daily. Some Native American tribes, such as the Navajo and Zuni, still make baskets using this same basket-making process. Many modern day Native American basket-makers still use the basket-making process to create high quality baskets, even though most of the Native American communities have largely moved on to other forms of basket making.
Today, many Native American tribes still live in the Southwest United States and in parts of Mexico and Central America. Their basket-making culture has been greatly influenced by the European styles of basket-making, especially when it comes to fibers. They traditionally make baskets from natural fibers such as manzanita, corn, squash and the like, while others use manmade synthetic fibers, especially the most commonly used basket-making fiber – plant fibers.
However, today modern basket making has taken basket making to a new level. Today you will see pre-fabricated baskets made out of aluminum and other light weight materials. However, even though these pre-fabricated baskets are more lightweight, they are no less sturdy or attractive than the natural wicker baskets. Today there are also pre-made woven baskets that are available in a variety of colors and patterns. These woven baskets are also very attractive and they are certainly something that is not commonly seen in the traditional Native American style.
One of the most unique characteristics of wicker baskets is that you can easily alter the natural appearance of the basket by adding or removing certain elements. For example, if you want to add a little bit of color, you can dye the basket in any color of your choice. If you want to spice up the basket, simply change the way the fibers are woven. There are literally hundreds of different combinations when it comes to the weaving of the basket-weaving techniques, but the one that is most often chosen is to incorporate the use of Native American basket-weaving techniques so that Native Americans can further improve the baskets used for basket weaving.