Traditional Portuguese large rush wicker basket in four colours. The handles are made from willow tree branches. They are called “cestas verga” and they are made in Algarve and Alentejo, Portugal´s Centro regions. They belonged to the rural world and they were used to carry food. This size of basket is widely used to go to the beach for its lightness and large capacity.
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|Measures||39x36x 24 cm|
|Made of||Rushes and willow branches|
The classic “cesta verga” was of natural colour, and had no leather handles at all. The natural materials employed are typical vegetable elements that grow in the vicinity of rivers; bulrushes and willow trees. Willow branches are light and bent easily. Ancient Celts thought willow leaves could protect them from other people´s jealousy (as if something could!). They also made amulets for protecting houses with willow wood.
Cestas verga were, and are, traditionally made by women in the rural world. The simple original model gained in complexity and colour because women contended among them to make the smartest baskets, and so, many different models of baskets appeared, but always keeping their nice and familiar shape. These baskets were used widely in the rural world but were slighted by the inhabitants of the cities. Now they have become fashionable and even have come out in Vogue!