The Basket Project

Posted by Brette in Collecting | Home and Decorating | Life

I’m continuing to work through what I call the Grandmother Project, as I seek out ways to use, preserve, and enjoy the special items I inherited when my 99 year old grandmother passed.

Before

Before

Two items that came home with me were baskets. The first is a very old two-handled, hinged picnic basket. My mom remembers my grandmother using this for family picnics years ago. It was a really hideous yellow (and I discovered there was a layer of green paint underneath that!). This basket seemed to me like something Martha would have great ideas about using. I posted about this a few weeks ago, asking for suggestions. So many of you sent me great ideas – thank you so much for inspiring me! The first thing I did was clean it. I took a damp cloth and thoroughly wiped it all over. It was dirty!

After

After

Next, I spray painted it white. It took an entire can of white spray paint and honestly, I probably should have ran out and bought another can to give it one more coat, but I didn’t have a chance.  I put the basket on my front porch, next to my white wicker furniture, with flowers in it. Next year I’m going to buy a nice oblong planter that will completely fill the basket and fill it with flowers that will grow and drape over the side, but for now this geranium brings it to life.

plant basketNext up is another picnic basket. This one is from my childhood. This is the basket my grandmother used to take on picnics with me. We often went to the park to have lunch. This is also what I think of as The Kitten Basket. My grandfather and his brother ran a greenhouse. Every spring the mama kitty that lived in the greenhouse had kittens. My grandmother would bring this basket with a towel in it and walk me over to the greenhouse. My grandfather would have already scoped out where the mama kitty was hiding her babies (often it was behind the boiler) and he would climb into wherever it was and get them out for me. We would put them in the basket and carry it back to my grandmother’s house where I would put the kittens out on a blanket in her sunroom and play with them. I can only imagine what the poor mama kitty thought about this!

So, as you can see, this basket has great sentimental value to me. I wanted to find a way to make it a part of my house. I decided to use it as a plant basket. I layered the bottom with plastic to protect it, then I set a plant pot in it. I’m going to carefully water it so that the basket does not get damaged.  It makes me happy every time I look at it.

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