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What are the Different Types of Baskets?

Amy Pollick
Updated May 16, 2024
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Baskets are probably one of humanity's oldest means of carrying things. It is not difficult to imagine a cavewoman idly braiding water rushes together when it dawns on her that this little pouch or plate she's woven might be handy for carrying those berries she just picked.

There are as many different types of baskets as there are uses for them. Some are decorative, some are functional and some are used in recreation. It is really just a container that holds items. Most people think of them as having a woven appearance.

Decorative baskets may be used simply for decoration or to hold other items. An example might be a small crystal basket on a whatnot shelf. This little knickknack exists simply to give pleasure to the eye. However, one made of straw or woven grapevine may hold antique glass ornaments at Christmas or ears of colorful Indian corn at Thanksgiving. A decorative basket may be made of straw, rush, vine, wood or fabric, among many other materials.

Another kind is functional. Perhaps one of the best known of this type is the picnic basket. These are rather iconic, as they have featured in numerous movies, television shows and commercials depicting happy couples or families enjoying an afternoon outside. They often have a double-hinged top so the contents can be easily accessed. Some picnic baskets even have holders for plates and cutlery.

Many people choose baskets to hold an assortment of gifts or fruit. Some are even themed, say for a graduation or birthday. Ones that contain fruit or flowers are also popular gifts to hospital patients and new mothers.

Deli baskets are ubiquitous. These oval, plastic containers hold French fries, sandwiches, hushpuppies and more in restaurants. They are often lined with wax paper and their cheerful brown, red or blue colors give a restaurant table a comfortable, homey air. Others may be lined with paper towels and will hold crackers, bread or hot rolls.

Baskets are also used in recreation. One fine example is the Easter basket. These may be purchased empty or already containing a huge candy and gift assortment. They are usually lined with plastic Easter "grass" and used to hold Easter eggs at the annual hunt.

Balloon gondolas are certainly some of the largest of the recreational baskets, but they definitely fit the definition. They are usually woven of strong materials and must hold at least two humans comfortably.

Baskets are such an important part of human culture, they will not likely fade in popularity any time in the next several centuries.

HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Amy Pollick
By Amy Pollick , Former Writer
Amy Pollick, a talented content writer and editor, brings her diverse writing background to her work at HomeQuestionsAnswered. With experience in various roles and numerous articles under her belt, she crafts compelling content that informs and engages readers across various platforms on topics of all levels of complexity.

Discussion Comments

By OeKc05 — On May 24, 2012

I used to look forward to getting an Easter basket filled with goodies every year. Instead of buying the prepackaged kind, my mother would buy a colorful empty basket and pick out the items to go inside of it herself.

No matter what she decided to put in it, I could rest assured that it would always be lined with Easter grass. She would get those hinged plastic eggs and fill them with wrapped chocolates and gumballs made to look like speckled bird eggs. She would give me a different assortment of candy each year, and just searching through the basket to discover it all was a large part of the thrill.

Each year, she would also put a different little stuffed animal in there. I got everything from stuffed bunnies to stuffed chicks, and I loved them all.

By kylee07drg — On May 23, 2012

@seag47 – That sounds like a cool idea. I must admit, though, that my favorite type of Christmas basket is a food basket.

Several businesses that are near my workplace send us food baskets with samples in them around Christmas time. We get lots of boxed chocolates, gourmet coffee packages, and nice foods that you really don't see for sale at any other time of the year.

These businesses probably earn a lot of business off of those basket samples. They get people hooked on their delicious snacks, and we go buy several boxes, since we know they are not available year-round.

By seag47 — On May 22, 2012

I put what I call a Christmas basket on my desk at work during the holiday season. The basket is oval-shaped and rests on top of a black wire sleigh.

I fill it with pine cones that I found in my yard and spray-painted silver. I also throw in several small red ornaments to add some color.

I decided to use the same basket during the fall to hold harvest ornaments. I gathered several decorative gourds and miniature pumpkins and arranged them in the basket. I had a mixture of orange and white pumpkins and green striped gourds, and it really brightened up the office.

I like keeping the basket on my desk and changing out its contents throughout the seasons. The basket is a constant presence, and my coworkers know that it will always be filled with something cheerful.

By StarJo — On May 22, 2012

I think that white wicker baskets look awesome in a beachside home. My sister's home is near the ocean, and she has the whole place decorated in beach décor. She has at least one white wicker basket in each room.

She fills the baskets with various types of seashells that she finds during her strolls along the shore. She chooses which colors and sizes will look best in each room.

She put the largest basket in the living room, where everyone can see it. Even the bathroom has a small basket, so the theme is carried throughout the house.

Amy Pollick

Amy Pollick

Former Writer

Amy Pollick, a talented content writer and editor, brings her diverse writing background to her work at...
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