Equipment: A Dremel tool with a diamond cutting wheel attachment and a sanding attachment. A box to contain the dust and eye protection. A clamp to hold the walnut as you make the cuts. A butter knife. Needle-nosed pliers to hold the nut as you sand it.
*Safety warning* This project requires a lot of concentration. A Dremel tool can give you a very nasty cut, so take great care as you use it.
Before you begin, set up a box to contain the dust you will create as you cut. Wear eye protection. In this picture you will see there are a number of baskets that didn't make it to completion. Sometimes the nut cracks under the pressure of the clamp as the shell is cut. I average one failure for every success.
Step 1: Choose a nut without any visible cracks Step 2: Insert the walnut into the clamp
Step 3: With the diamond cutting drill, start making cuts as pictured. I start with the cuts around the girth of the nut. The next cuts create the handle
Step 4: Pop off the "D" shaped pieces of shell with a butter knife. Pick out the nutmeats. (Have a snack if you want)
Step 5: Change the bit to the sanding wheel and smooth the bits and pieces left after the nutmeat is removed. I use needle nosed pliers to hold the nut during sanding