How to Make Clothesline Coil Baskets

If you have a sewing machine, this is a colorful way to make baskets, bags, bowls, coasters, or placemats. You will need a length of cotton clothesline (no metal or other hard cores) and, optionally, some colorful fabric.


  1. 1
    Plan out the general shape of the object you wish to make. It may be circular or oblong, and it may be flat or have sides that come up. Really the only requirement is that you be able to get your sewing machine inside to stitch it together.
  2. 2
    Cut long strips of fabric, about 1 centimeter (0.4 in) wide and as long as the fabric permits. A ruler and a rotary cutter will help with this process.
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    Wrap the fabric strips around the clothesline in a spiral. When you reach the end of one strip, simply start the next. There is no need to finish the edges. You can wrap as you go and use a pin to hold the end in place while you stitch the coils together. Make sure each wrap overlaps the previous one.
  4. 4
    Begin coiling the clothesline into the shape you'd like the finished piece to be. For a round piece, simply coil the rope into a spiral. For an elongated or oblong piece, start by folding the clothesline back onto itself in a straight line, then build the coil working out from that.
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    Machine sew a zigzag stitch across the space between one wrap and the next.
  6. 6
    To create walls, simply tilt the finished coil up as you sew.


  • This is a great project for using up scrap fabrics.
  • Use multiple colors of fabric, as long as they coordinate or contrast in a way you like.
  • You can combine this technique with other sewing. For example, you could do the bottom of a bag with this technique and make the top pieces with fabric.
  • If you already like the color(s) of the rope or clothesline, there is no need for the fabric wrap.

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