Rattan Basket SHelves

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Project by Don Johnson posted 09-29-2011 06:49 PM 3397 views 6 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My wife, Avril, wanted to improve the storage of the materials she uses for patchwork. They are currently stored in a chest of drawers, but it has shallow drawers, so she has to lift up layers to see what is below. She suggested that baskets could be used, where folded fabrics could be stored on end, so that the top edges of all the pieces of cloth in a basket could be seen at the same time.

We found some nice rattan baskets on the ‘net, which came in sets of three nested sizes, so I ordered four sets. Unfortunately they were out of stock, so I had to wait some weeks for delivery. I delayed starting on the frame for a couple of weeks, but eventually my patience ran out (not unusual) so I started construction using a design created in Sketchup. I allowed for some variation in size from nominal as the hand-made baskets were advertised as ‘subject to some variation’.

I have to say that the Cut List plug-in for Sketchup was extremely useful in keeping track of the 64 horizontals and 7 verticals, and I decided to employ dowel joints – using my Joint Genie - . However, I did not at first appreciate that 64 horrizontals meant 128 dowels, and that in turn meant 256 holes! As Avril wanted the frame painted white, I was able to use pine from the local DIY store – though the actual dimensions of the purchased material were not always as labelled, so some revisions were needed to the Sketchup plan (good job I made each item a component!)

Eventually the frame was completed, but still no baskets had arrived, so I reluctantly got on with the painting. When it was finished I had to wait another week or so for the baskets to arrive, wondering all the time what I would do if they didn’t fit! Well, as you can see from the attached pic, all but two DID fit, so that was a considerable relief. The suppliers agreed to check their stock for two more nearer to nominal that will fit in my frame and will send them on receipt of the ‘biggies’.

All that remains now is to add three shelves onto the tops (possibly glass), and the unit will be finished. The small gap at the back of the smallest baskets has been left vertically clear for the storage of rolls of Christmas wrapping paper and the like. Avril is delighted with the result, so plenty of Brownie points gained!

-- Don, Somerset UK,

3 comments so far

View motthunter's profile


2141 posts in 3796 days

#1 posted 09-29-2011 09:14 PM

I’ve seen guys do this with pvc pipes and connectors.. this is far more elegant to see

-- making sawdust....

View Roger Clark aka Rex's profile

Roger Clark aka Rex

6940 posts in 3432 days

#2 posted 09-30-2011 03:18 AM

Cool Cubes

-- Roger-R, Republic of Texas. "Always look on the Bright Side of Life" - An eyeball to eyeball confrontation with a blind person is as complete waste of Time.

View Stosh's profile


65 posts in 2918 days

#3 posted 10-02-2011 07:15 AM

Looks like it should be very functional and apealing to the eye.

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