Water hyacinth baskets
Water hyacinth baskets are made from a natural, fast-growing aquatic plant — water hyacinth which used to be a nuisance to waterways. For the past decade, it has become a sustainable resource for producing various homewares. From dried water hyacinth stalks, artisans delicately turn them into beautiful products with many weaving styles.
There are 8 weaving styles with water hyacinth that are commonly done by artisans in Vietnam. The names indicate how water hyacinth stalks are processed, or how they look after being woven. Generally, from the highest to the lowest production cost:
- Rolled weave
- Twisted weave
- Rice nut weave
- Arrow weave = Braided weave
- Open asterisk = Open hexagon = Open zigzag = Close flat weave
1. Rolled Weave
Rolled weave has the highest production cost in comparison to other water hyacinth weaving styles.
To make rolled weave, artisans first roll water hyacinth stalks around a core (this core includes multiple seagrass strands) into a fine rope. These ropes are then linked together with/without a metal frame to create a product.
Owing to solid, thick features, the rolled weave of water hyacinth is greatly suitable for Storage & Organization items such as water hyacinth baskets, laundry hampers, laundry baskets, storage baskets, storage bins.
2. Twisted Weave
Generally, twisted weave gets the second-highest production cost. In Vietnam, artisans often twist 2 or 3 water hyacinth stalks together, then craft or sew into baskets. There are many diameters of twisted water hyacinth ropes.
Twisted weave looks much like rolled weave, but the sharp difference is its smaller rope diameter and a wider range of patterns for products.
Twisted water hyacinth ropes can be woven open or close; vertically or horizontally; in single, triple or quad weave. Water hyacinth products with twisted weave require a metal frame along to retain good shapes.
With various styles and shapes, twisted weave is widely applied in both Storage & Organization and Home Decor items such as water hyacinth baskets, indoor planters, decorative vases, trays, lampshades, etc.
3. Rice Nut Weave
Rice nut weave is the third most expensive style of water hyacinth, following Rolled weave and Twisted weave.
As the name refers, two water hyacinth stalks are twinned around, which forms a weave looking like a rice nut. Rice nut weave is not so thick, but exceptionally durable thanks to its strong, tight construction in most cases.
Combined with a steel frame, water hyacinth baskets with rice nut weave will keep their even shape. The application of rice nut weave varies in woven storage baskets as well as diverse home decor wholesale such as indoor planters, trays, wall decor plates, table placemats, vases, lampshades, mirror frames as well as handbags.
4. Arrow Weave
For most water hyacinth products, Arrow weave often has the same cost as Braided weave.
Arrow weave is another traditional style that local artisans commonly apply for products. Artisans twin two water hyacinth stalks to create this weave that looks like an arrow or fishbone. You might see this weaving style as it’s very popular.
The arrow weave is coupled with metal frames when artisans use it for water hyacinth baskets, planters or organizer trays. This combination will give additional durability for products while keeping them from deforming over time.
Aside from wicker storage baskets, other home furnishings feature the arrow weave of water hyacinth. They include organization trays, indoor planters, table placemats, lampshades, handbags, shopping bags, mirror frames, etc.
5. Braided Weave
Many people mistake braided weave as arrow weave as their appearance seems identical. However, they’re different in terms of weaving technique and patterns.
The name ‘Braided weave’ refers to the technique of braiding three or five water hyacinth stalks into a rope. Afterwards, these ropes are either woven or sewn into a product.
With this technique, obviously there are so many rope diameters (such as 10mm, 11mm, 15mm, 20mm) and styles of weaving: close/open, vertical/horizontal, single/double/triple weave.
Vietnamese artisans turn braided ropes into a product with or without a metal frame, it depends on the function. Braided weave is widely used in water hyacinth storage baskets, laundry hampers, laundry baskets, bins, handbags, shopping bags, indoor planters, rugs, home decor accents, etc.
6. Open Asterisk Weave
Open asterisk weave is made by weaving multiple water hyacinth stalks over a metal frame to create asteriskpatterns with open holes.
They will allow products to get better ventilation and reduce the risk of developing mold. Metal frames are required for this weave, since without a metal frame, water hyacinth baskets will lose form, and cannot function well.
Products with open asterisk weave will be both practical and asthetic. This weaving style is suitable for water hyacinth baskets, storage bins, laundry hampers, storage trays, and home decor wholesale such as lampshades, lanterns.
7. Open Hexagon Weave
Open hexagon weave is not as popular as above weaves, yet you might see it in several designs of water hyacinth baskets.
Vietnamese artisans turn water hyacinth into this weave by crossing multiple water hyacinth stalks, so it will create open hexagonholes. The holes are good for these items since they help water hyacinth baskets well-ventilated.
Similar to open asterisk weave, open hexagon weave needs to have a metal frame along to enforce products’ sturdiness. This weave is commonly an ideal option for producing water hyacinth baskets, storage bins, wicker laundry hampers, and decorative trays.
8. Open Zigzag Weave
Open zigzag weave is created by weaving water hyacinth stalks up and down over a metal frame in a zigzag line.
Like two above open weaves, open zigzag weave is normally combined with a metal frame to retain good shapes for products, especially water hyacinth baskets and boxes.
The metal frame will enable water hyacinth products to get great sturdiness for storing. In Vietnam, artisans apply open zigzag weave for almost Home Storage & Organization products such as water hyacinth baskets, bins, storage cubes, boxes, trays, etc.
9. Close Flat Weave
Here comes another lowest-priced weaving style – Close flat weave of water hyacinth.
This style features a plain weave which have water hyacinth stalks cross up and down each other. To add sturdiness for products, flat weave needs to have a metal frame.
With strong frames, close flat weave is often used for both Storage, Organization and Home Decor products. Particularly, water hyacinth storage baskets, storage bins, boxes, indoor planters.
- Water hyacinth baskets and home decor are for indoor uses only.
- Each weave is suitable for certain product lines. The production time and cost differs between weaving styles.
- There are some weaves that have the same lowest production costs. They include open asterisk weave, open hexagon weave, open zigzag weave and close flat weave.
- The exact prices depend much on product specifications, not just on weaving styles.
- A water hyacinth product can have mixed weaves such as: Twisted weave x Braided weave, Rice nut weave x Flat weave, Flat weave x Braided weave, Open asterisk weave x Arrow weave, etc.
>> READ MORE: Six Weaving Styles for Seagrass Storage Baskets