The two square pieces of wood will form the ends of your basket. When cut from a 1x8 board, the measurement is roughly 7-1/2" x 7-1/2". Use a tape measure to align your bowl so that it is centered on the board. With a pencil, trace around half of the bowl to mark the curvature of your basket wire. You may want to extend the ends of the line straight, so the penciled shape resembles a “U.”
The best thing about creating a routed track to contain the steel wire mesh is that it’ll protect your hands and the foods you carry from being poked and snagged by the wire. No one wants scratches when they’re harvesting their fruits and veggies! Use the narrowest straight bit that you have, and with the board clamped down, plunge the bit halfway, and maneuver the router so that you can trim out along the “U” line on each board.
If you don’t own or have access to a router and were unable to create a channel for the wire fencing, consider carefully curling all ends to conceal any sharp areas, and staple it directly to the pencil line marked on the board.
Cut the mesh to size. If it had been wrapped in a tight roll, the mesh probably already has a tendency to coil and will easily fit into the groove you created with the router. Leave 1-1/2” of space at each end of the “U” because that is where the 1x2 x 13” boards will attach. Use the staple gun to pin the steel in place by positioning it so the staple straddles the steel and pins into the wood track.
The 13” 1x2 boards serve as extra support for your basket. They will sit on top edges of the metal mesh (resting flush on top of it) and connect to the end boards. If you notice that the metal is a little bit long at this point, you can still easily trim it with metal snips, or fold it slightly to fit. You can also use the staple gun to secure the mesh to the underside of the 1x2. To secure the 1x2s, nail through the end boards and into each 1x2 rail.
Bore a hole with the 1/2" bit on each end of the basket and then thread a rope to serve as a durable handle. You’ll want to be sure it’s long enough once tied and made of a durable material, such as nylon, that’ll hold up well to getting wet.
Keep your basket on hand in your garden, and enjoy the convenience it offers. Not only will it provide lots of room for your daily picks, but you can also set the basket flat without it tipping, and easily rinse the foods while they’re in the basket.