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Basketry

Basketry has been a functional part of life on Cape Breton dating back to pre-European times.  The basket makers listed below have studied the various reed-weaving techniques employed down through history in Nova Scotia and on Cape Breton and adapted those practices to their own style.  Each, in her own way, combines tradition, environmental inspiration and personal style into her individual pieces.

Diane Metz
Diane Metz
Shari MacLeod
Shari MacLeod

Shari MacLeod

Shari MacLeod

A trained horticulturalist with a degree in agriculture, Shari was first exposed to basketry in 1999 when she took her first course at the Cape Breton Centre for Craft and Design. “The endless possibilities for form and function attracted me instantly to basketry when I was introduced to it. The added pleasure is finding elements from nature that blend in beautifully with a new basket to provide the finishing touch!”

Shari continues to attend upgrading course, as well as pursuing numerous self-training sessions.

Having worked with fiber for the last twenty years, Shari finds she really enjoys working with rattan because of its flexibility for design and its ability to absorb color readily. Shari’s method of employing a variety of basketry techniques within the same piece allows for both quality of construction and creative input. Shari resides in Sydney, where she divides her time between basketry and gardening.


Shari's "Cathead Basket" in Blue.

Shari's "Cathead Basket" in Blue.

6"w x 6"l x 8"h.

Tea stained, smoked and hand dyed reed

Available at the Arts North gallery, or email for prices and availability.

Shari's "Quilter's Tote" in Brown.

Shari's "Quilter's Tote" in Brown.

12"w x 20"l x 12"h

Tea stained and hand dyed reed with leather handles

Available at the Arts North gallery, or email for prices and availability.

Shari's "Summer Grasses" basket.

Shari's "Summer Grasses" basket.

6"w x 10"l x 12"h.

Hand dyed reed.

Available at the Arts North gallery, or email for prices and availability.

Shari's "Fibreplay Fall" basket

Shari's "Fibreplay Fall" basket

7" dia x 6"h.

Hand dyed reed with eyelash yarn accent.

Available at the Arts North gallery, or email for prices and availability.

Shari's "Garden Selection"

Shari's "Garden Selection"

A representative grouping of her one-of-a-kind baskets.

Pieces similar to these are available at the Arts North gallery.

Shari's Birch "Storage Basket"

Shari's Birch "Storage Basket"

9" dia x 6"h.

Smoked reed with birch bark accents

Available at the Arts North gallery, or email for prices and availability.


Diane Metz

Diane Metz

Diane's baskets evoke a free form approach approach, often using found objects as the design basis. Driftwood, bark and seaweed not only show up in her pieces, but often form the foundation for the entire pattern.

Her choice of colors is eclectic, ranging from subtle earth tones to vibrant, outspoken celebrations of light.

Occasionally reining herself in, Diane also produces a line of small mending baskets that are both functional as well as attractive.


Diane's Wicker Urn

Diane's Wicker Urn

Diane's Wicker Urn incorporates reversing arrows woven with natural and hand-dyed rattan.

It's approximately 10" high and is priced at $89.00

Diane's "Uprooted"

Diane's "Uprooted"

This rib-style basket is woven on a balsam fir root using fir and spruce barks, spruce roots and rattan.

It is approximately 10" wide and is priced at $129.00

A series of Diane's Needle & Thread Baskets

A series of Diane's Needle & Thread Baskets

These are small wicker baskets with stuffed fabric pin cushions and dowel thread holders.

They are approximately 4" in diameter, and are priced at $24.00.

Diane's "A Walk in the Woods"

Diane's "A Walk in the Woods"

This standing basket is woven on maple branches using a variety of barks, iris leaves and rattan.

It stands 12" high and is 6" wide.

It's priced at $95.00.

Diane's "Driftwood Rainbow Basket"

Diane's "Driftwood Rainbow Basket"

Diane's "Driftwood Rainbow Basket" is woven with natural and hand-dyed rattan and seagrass, and features a driftwood handle.

It is approximately 12" long and is priced at $99.00


Arts North • Smelt Brook, RR#2 • Dingwall, Nova Scotia • B0C 1G0 • Phone/Fax: (902) 383-2732