Billy Ray Sims Basketmaker

Category: Billy’s Baskets


Welcome!

This site features the work of basket maker Billy Ray Sims, and offers baskets for sale, stories of great craftspeople, and insight for those interested in this endangered craft. If you don’t see a style of white oak basket (the…

Read More

Anatomy Lesson: White Oak Basket

This basket has three rows of sterling silver woven in each side.

Read More

Potato Basket and Mini-Spud

10″W x 4″H My latest commision, shown in the foreground, came from a client who wanted a version of the potato basket you can read more about below. But when I informed her how large the original basket is —23″-wide—…

Read More

So-Called Feather Basket

12″w x 22″h While visiting the Museum of Appalachia, Norris, TN, and admiring John Rice Irwin’s incomparable collection of Appalachian baskets, I was offered the chance to purchase a basket from his private collection. My eyes were immediately drawn to…

Read More

Corn Basket

14″ H x 18″ W This field basket, modeled after one by Vonnie Miller, was quickly made at an annual  gathering of white oak basket makers at Mary Ann and Bill Smith’s home in McCalla, AL. About 10 enthusiasts came…

Read More

Painted Lady

Gizzard Basket 12″ x 12″ x 10 1/2″ Hand-split white oak and reed; milk paint, varnish It’s good to break out of strict traditions sometimes, and this basket is about as Billy Ray-goes-wild as it gets. The handle, hoop, wrap…

Read More

Collaborative Effort

White Oak Market Basket 6 1/2″ x 10″ x 7 1/2″ I’ve enjoyed the privilege of working before with Leona Waddell, a wonderful master basketmaker in Cecilia, KY, but this one was something special. It’s a small market basket, similar…

Read More