Sunday, July 25, 2010

Mississippi River Driftwood Baskets

Since we live and work near the Mississippi River, we love to sing its praises. Not only does this wonderful river give us fish, transportation, and recreation, it gives us little things...its beauty in a sunrise, a shore along which to stroll, and occasionally, a wonderful sculpted piece of driftwood.

The wall baskets I created the past two weeks gave me such satisfaction! The handles are all gifts of the river. Sometimes I try to alter a piece to make it shorter, or trim off something that doesn't look quite right to me. Then I realize just how much better the river does at smoothing and sculpting the wood!

The baby of the family....

This little guy is the smallest basket, at just 4 1/2" tall. Little baskets are tedious, but the result is often more satisfying than a larger piece.

My personal favorite

Don't you love how this handle undulates? I almost did a little dance when I found this piece!

The handle dictates the size and shape of the basket. Balance is important so the size of the handle tells me how big the basket should be. (I like the one with the "X" handle...the branches grafted together with the resulting amazing piece of driftwood, bark still intact.)

Mississippi River Driftwood Wall Baskets

Driftwood inspires me!
The past two weeks I have been creating wall baskets using Mississippi River driftwood. The river flows just a block from The Bent Tree Gallery, our physical rustic showroom in Clarksville, Missouri, just north of St. Louis. All summer the river has threatened to flood, and has in fact been up well into our Riverfront Park. I have been gathering interesting driftwood as I walk my Grandogs, and found time recently to incorporate some of the interesting and quirky pieces into wall baskets. Now mounted and for sale on a wall of the gallery, here they are!