Tutorial: Gathered Round Basket

I had a few requests for instructions on how to make the gathered round basket that I made last week. This is an easy project and the baskets can be made in any size, are fully reversible,  and are useful for so many things.

Materials: (to make a basket measuring 4 1/2 inches diameter and 1 3/4 inches high)

  • 2 pieces of cotton fabric cut into circles with a 8 inch diameter (I used a small side plate as a template)
  • 1 piece of fusible wadding (such as parlan or pellon) cut into a circle with an 8 inch diameter
  • strip of fabric measuring 2 1/4 inch x 14 inch (for binding)
1. Fuse the wadding to the fabric circle that will form the outside of the basket, following manufacturers directions.
2. Baste the basket lining and basket outer together with the wrong sides facing.
3. Using a long straight stitch, sew a gathering stitch around the perimeter of the circle, close to the edge. Stitch a second gathering stitch close to the first gathering stitch. Ensure both gathering stitches are within the 1/4 inch seam allowance.
4. Gently pull the two ends of thread on the wrong side, the fabric will gather along the thread.
5. Secure the threads at one end to prevent the stitches from pulling out.
6. Even out the gathers until the circumference of the circle measures approximately 12 inches. When all the gathers are in place, use a standard machine stitch to stitch a 1/4 inch seam.
7. Press the binding strip in half lengthwise with the wrong sides facing.
8. Pin the binding to the outside of the basket and stitch in place.
9. Fold the binding over to the inside of the basket and stitch in place by hand using a slip stitch to secure.
Edit 07/ 2012 – Just wanted to clarify in response to a few emails – The circles are 8 inches in diameter (the measurement you get if you rule a line through the centre of the circle) and when they are gathered they measure 12 inches in circumference (i.e all around the outside of the circle).

Check out Gathered Round Basket – 3 Sizes, to make three baskets that nest inside each other.

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  1. says

    I am going to make one of those cute baskets for sure – thanks for the knowhow! The banner is great but now I think that Paris is in Australia!? 😀 But I know how you feel – I love it too!


  2. says

    Thanks Lisa, i am going to give this a go, i have been itching to use some of my Pure by Sweetwater and this looks perfect.
    Sarah is a young lady with many talents.

  3. says

    I have a feeling I will be making many of these this year! What a great little gift for any occasion. Thanks for the tutorial.

  4. says

    This basket is so adorable! I love how easy it is, so I can’t wait to make a couple for myself and a couple for gifts. Perfect for my sewing friends. Love the girlie fabric you used for the sample.

    Cool header! I could use a refresher for my blog too.

  5. says

    THank you! I had been looking at the photo trying to figure it out! Thank you for the tutorial so I don’t have to strain my poor brain!

  6. says

    The new header is so lovely, girls!! I love it! I have been to Paris and that is an adorable city! Romantic, charming!!
    This project is wonderful! So gorgeous!!! Be sure I will work on it!!!

  7. says

    I can’t believe you put a tutorial together for this! I loved this little basket from the second I saw it and can’t wait to make one for myself. Thank you so much! I am also loving your new header. You and your daughter are so full of inspiration and talent.

  8. says

    This is gorgeous! I feel quite inspired to have a go myself!

    Would be a great organiser for my ribbons and embroidery threads, so much nicer than a carrier bag….

    and another full of little sweets would be quite nice too….

    Have a lovely weekend, Helenxx

  9. says

    I LOVE IT! Thanks so much for such a great tute…those materials you used are stunning too! And let Sarah know I think she is a very talented young lady with an incredibly bright future!! Loving the colour scheme and eiffel tower…matches her newly made over room!!

  10. says

    Just love the little baskets… and thank you so much..these would be great for my granddaughters for their easter eggs and then they could use them for their hair ties!! Wonderful…thank you for sharing

  11. Barbara says

    Love the basket and tried to make it but was confused with the directions of cutting a 8 inch circle. Was the 8 inch right? How does the 8 inch circle have a circumfrence of 12 inches? Sorry for being so dumb but I love this basket and want to make one.

  12. says

    Thank you for this tutorial! It’s a wonderful basket.. When I am moved to my new flat, I will have to make some new accessoires and the basket will be one of them.. 🙂


  13. says

    I just LOVE the look of this…..Oh, everyone I know is going to get such a cute little gift this year!!! Thank you so much for sharing such an amazing project!!!!

  14. Anonymous says

    Hey, I just hopped over to your website via StumbleUpon. Not somthing I would normally read, but I liked your thoughts none the much less. Thanks for making some thing worth reading.

  15. says

    Hi Anonymous

    The circles are 8 inches in diameter (the measurement you get if you rule a line through the centre of the circle) and when they are gathered they measure 12 inches in circumference (ie all around the outside of the circle). Hope that helps.

  16. Anonymous says

    I’m confused. If you’re starting with 8″ circles, how can you even out the gathers to a 12″ circumference?

  17. Anonymous says

    RE: I’m confused.
    23 February 2012 9:35 AM

    Visually, didn’t make sense. Thanks for clearing that up.

  18. Anonymous says

    Love this! I’m making several today. My nieces will adore these as catch-alls on their dressers and nightstands. Thank you!

  19. Anonymous says

    Hi, I am new and absolutely love this. Is this possible to make in a larger size? I thought I would try to make a large one, starting out with an eighteen inch circle. Are my calculations correct to gather the top to a 24 inch circumference? You have described the pattern so well, I feel it is very possible to make a larger one.

  20. says

    Hi, I ‘ve never really commented before on sewing blogs.. but your project is so creative and simple that i couldn’t resist it! you’ve given a brilliant idea. Been wanting to make a basket but shying away. i guess i’d definitely do one of yours! thank you very much.

  21. Anonymous says

    Hi Girls,

    I would like to make different sizes of this lil’ basket as a set. Could you please send me the details for a 12″ & a 16″ in diameter baskets?


  22. says

    This is a very pretty item for a gift. If I don’t have fusible batting/wadding, could I use regular wadding? I think the fusible type just keeps it from shifting as you sew. Perhaps I could just baste the regular kind in place to start with? Thanks.

  23. says

    Could you use regular wadding instead of the fusible kind? I don’t have any fusible kind at home but was thinking about using the regular kind to make one of these.

  24. Linda says

    Hi. Really cute. Have you tried making larger ones? Would you run into problems with them keeping their shape/the sides staying upright do you think?

    • A Spoonful of Sugar says

      Hi Linda – We haven’t tried making any bigger ones but it should work OK as long as they weren’t too big.

  25. says

    thank you for this great tutorial. i skipped the wadding and went for a really heavy fabric (the kind used for upholstering chairs). the results aren’t as cute as yours, but it will do 🙂

    • A Spoonful of Sugar says

      Thanks Ofelya. Your baskets sound like they would be very sturdy. There are some great upholstery fabrics around.

  26. Sandi King says

    i may be a little dense, but i can’t find the tutorial for the postage stamp hot pad. they are so cute and i would like to make several.

  27. Susan Jerabek says

    Is there an unfinished seam on the inside bottom….or did I miss something? To make this reversible, you would have to make two separate pieces and then sew them together around the top edge. Otherwise, if you sew both bottom circles together and then add the side piece….you end up with either a surged or unfinished edge on the inside.
    Am I correct? The picture looks like your inside basket is total finished with no seam allowance/unfinished edge showing.

    • A Spoonful of Sugar says

      Hi Susan – there is no side pieces or seams. It is made by sewing two circles together, gathering the top edge, and then adding the binding to hide the gathering. Hope this helps!

    • A Spoonful of Sugar says

      Thanks so much Carole! Sorry for the late response – I have been unwell and haven’t been able to check my emails. i really appreciate the feature.

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