Exotic Woods to customize your basket

Through the history of lightship baskets, basket makers have tried variations on the basic theme to set their product apart from the next weavers. This included using a variety of woods for staves, rims, handles, and bases. Exotics are used mostly for purse tops but also for any short basket where the wood can show.  I have found  ebony (gaboon) and rosewood to be two of the more popular exotics.  Be aware that not all woods come in large widths making large plates only possible with a glue joint.

BIRCH: This hardwood is a mellow gold color with cherry-like grain BIRDSEYE MAPLE: A favorite of furniture makers this figured wood is very popular
MAPLE: A very light wood with nice grain highlights maple is one of the primary woods I use CURLY MAPLE: This figure can occur in many woods. Maple is the most common.
BLOODWOOD: A beautiful deep red wood with no figure and a closed grain that finishes great.  BOCOTE: A Spectacularly figured wood with stripes. Available only in smaller sizes makes it good for small projects or inlays.
BUBINGA: Striking reddish brown shades and a somewhat open grain surface. A relatively hard wood that finishes well. CHERRY: Most people are aware of the beautiful warmth and tone of a nicely finished piece of cherry. Medium hard with a close grain that finishes great.
COCOBOLO: Hard and oily this wood has great figure though it darkens quite a bit. This wood can be tricky to finish due to the oils in the wood. IMBUYA: This medium density yellowish brown wood has a close grain and takes finish really well. I use this in place of walnut sometimes.
EBONY (macassar): This is the less expensive ebony and has bands of brown and black. Very dense takes finish very well. EBONY (gaboon): This is the jet black wood most people think of as "ebony". Extremely dense this wood looks like no other properly finished.
KINGWOOD: A relative of the rosewood family this very dense wood looks very much like rosewood with stripes of brown and black. KOA : A tropical wood from Hawaii I have a limited stock of this for use in my own work only.
LACEWOOD: A soft highly figured wood with veins of color running throughout. Not suitable for big projects due to its softness. Finishes well. MAHOGANY: The largest family of trees I use Honduras mahogany for molds and bases as well as tops for baskets. Slightly open grained this finishes well.
RED OAK: Course grain with flecks of color characterize red oak. I rarely use this very common wood. The open grain in this wood makes herd to finish well. WHITE OAK: This wood is used for handles by many, but I found I preferred maple and cherry. Course grain with a greenish -gold color.
PAU FERRO: Nice close grained wood with a mellow brown to black creamy figure. A favorite of students it's very hard and so finishes well. PINK IVORY: This rare wood from Africa is actually bright pink when new. It mellows with age to a deep red-maroon. Very dense, this wood finishes well
PURPLEHEART: Purple when cut this mellows to a burgundy-brown with age. Hard but slightly open grained this wood does finish well. ROSEWOOD: Rosewood has many varieties, pictured is a figured Honduras. Color can run from deep brown to warm red tones. Hard, finishes well.
SAPELE: Brownish wood with deep striped figure. Somewhat open grain and medium density. This wood finishes quite well. SATINWOOD: A Deep yellow color with a real depth of grain make this a nice wood for a special project. It can be highly figured and takes finish well.
TEAK: Course wood with an oily feel I occasionally have people into boats choose this for parts. Finishing can be tricky. WALNUT: Rich chocolate brown color this U.S. hardwood is one of my favorites for making baskets. Handles can be made from this wood. Finishes great.
To calculate the cost of a specific wood multiply the base cost above by the number in the appropriate box below
Afromosia    3 Ash        2

Bloodwood 3

 Bubinga   4 Cocobolo 3.75

Macassar Ebony 8

Gaboon Ebony 14

Fishtail oak 3 Goncalo alves - 3.75  Kingwood   5

Koa         4

Lacewood 4 Mahogany 3 Ziricote     8
Maple,birdseye 3 - 5 Maple,tiger 3 - 5      Padauk      4 Pau ferro 6 Pearwood 4 Pink ivory 12 Purpleheart 3
Rosewood  7 Sapele   5 Satinwood 7 Tulipwood 7 Walnut   3 Wenge     4 Zebrawood 5

Mold        Base

2 - 4".................10.00

5 - 6"..................12.00

7 - 8"..................14.00







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