Letizia Reilly, a Nantucket resident, has been involved in the art of basket weaving for over seventeen years. During these years she has crafted the Nantucket Lightship Basket as well as The Mattapoisett. She has earned a reputation as a gifted and talented artist and has had her work featured in past editions of Early American Life magazine.
Letizia is a member of the Northeast Basket Makers Guild, the Nantucket Basket Makers & Merchants Association and the Nantucket Lightship Basket Museum. In addition to creating, Letizia has organized and taught the art of basket making both on and off the island.
The Nantucket Lightship baskets are woven over a mold using cane. The bases are made from cherry, oak or specialty woods. Letiziaís basket are tightly woven with ivory knobs and base plugs. The handles are usually coordinated with the base and finely finished.
Unlike the Nantucket Lightship Basket, the Mattapoisett is a free form basket, which does not require a mold. The size and shape is dictated by the design and whim of the artist. The Mattapoisett is an intricately worked pine needle and raffia basket requiring hundreds of hours to complete. It is accented with brilliant decorations of ivory carvings and scrimshaw. The collector is guaranteed an original, as no two of Letiziaís basket are alike.
Letizia takes orders for special baskets and sells both the Lightship baskets and the Mattapoisett on Nantucket Island.
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