Contemporary Basketmaking: The Zarzo Basket


Workshop Overview

The Zarzo basket is said to originate from northern Spain. Its stylish and contemporary appearance masks its original use as a drain for cheese curd in the cheese making process. One of the most exciting aspects of the Zarzo basket is its construction as the base, sides and handles are woven in one. This style of basket is relatively easy to produce so the Zarzo basket is a good basket for beginners as well as those with more experience wishing to include Zarzo basket making in their skill set.  In this workshop, you will be guided by Gill Jones to craft either a round or a rectangular basket. Making your own contemporary basket with environmentally friendly willow is incredibly satisfying and creative. You will also be learning a heritage craft. 

Zarzo Basket


Zarzo Basket
Time Activity
10:00 Tea and biscuits on arrival, registration and welcome
10:15 Discussion on health and safety
10:30 Introduction to basic tools and machinery
10:45 Demonstration
11:00 Tea and cake
11:15 Select your willow and build a base form
12:30 Lunch
13:30 Shaping your basket
14:30 Shaping your handle
15:30 Tea and cake
15:45 Finishing touches
16:15 Discuss care of your basket
16:30 Workshop finishes


Zarzo Basket

What You Will Learn

Zarzo Basket Slider 2

During this workshop, you will:

  • Handle willow safely and discuss the way in which it is prepared correctly;
  • Use willow work tools correctly and safely;
  • Select suitable willow for your Zarzo basket;
  • Form a base that will incorporate the side weave and handles to create your Zarzo basket;
  • Pick off and finish ends of worked  willow rods; and
  • Discuss the care of your willow Zarzo basket so that it gives you many years of pleasurable use

What You Will Take Home

Zarzo Basket
Zarzo Basket
Zarzo Basket
Zarzo Basket
  • Zarzo Basket
  • Zarzo Basket
  • Zarzo Basket

At the end of this workshop, you will take home your own beautifully hand crafted willow Zarzo basket.

Important Details

The Rural Skills Centre will provide:

  • All materials and equipment to make your Zarzo basket;
  • Tea/Coffee and lots of cake;
  • Lunch (let us know if you have any specific dietary requirements);
  • Parking; and
  • Accessible facilities.
  • Zarzo Basket
  • Zarzo Basket
  • Zarzo Basket


Suitable for Beginners Icon

This Zarzo basket making workshop is suitable for those new to the craft of basket weaving as well as those who have an interest in developing their skills in basketry/willow work.


This workshop is taught by Gill.