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.