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  • Writer's pictureThe Rural Legend

How To Clean Thrifted Wicker Baskets

Thrift stores are always filled with an assortment of wicker baskets and other items just waiting to be styled in your home! The problem with wicker is because of it's texture, it holds onto dirt and debris easily, so it's important to thoroughly clean any type of wicker when bringing them home. Read on to learn how to clean wicker baskets properly!

Wicker vase with flowers sitting on a circular wooden board on a wooden table.

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What to look for when thrifting wicker baskets

  • Check the structure of the basket. Are there holes or breaks in the weaving that will affect the structure?

  • Is there mold or mildew on the basket? (we'll talk about how to clean this later on in the post!)

  • Explore all sizes - even the smallest baskets can be used for storage and styling!

  • Look for older baskets with patina or signs of aging that will add beauty and character to your space.

  • Look for unique shapes or weaving techniques that will make it look more high end.

A room decorated with a variety of furniture including an arm chair with a wild cat pattern and a wicker planter with a plant.

How Can I style Thrifted Baskets?

Wicker adds a warm organic feel to a space no matter your style. Here are some of my favorite ways to style baskets in a home:

  • add a plant in a waterproof pot

  • use as the base for your Christmas tree

  • organize toys and books

  • style on shelves

A bathroom with dark green walks decorated with a wicker basket.

  • use in an entryway to corral small items like keys or large items like shoes and umbrellas

  • store blankets and pillows in a bedroom or living room

  • display shallow ones on a wall as a collection or mixed in with artwork

A living space with two curly dogs walking through it that has wooden shelves with pictures and a wicker decoration on them.

  • insert a vase or glass of water and use as a flower vase

  • store remotes and other less aesthetic items on a coffee table

A table decorated with a lit candle and a wicker basket containing pine tree branches and decorative fruit.

How to clean wicker baskets



1. Start by brushing and wiping off your basket to remove large pieces of debris from inside and outside

2. If your basket is in good shape, fill a sink or tub with warm water and dish soap and full submerge the basket for up to 5 minutes. DO NOT let it soak longer than that to prevent damage.

3. Gently swirl the basket around in water to help loosen extra debris.

4. Rinse thoroughly to remove all soap.

5. Let air dry, preferably outside. If drying on a sunny day, make sure to bring your basket back inside as soon as it's dry to avoid UV damage.

6. For mold and mildew, spray a vinegar and water mixture over the area. Let see a few minutes and then scrub with your soft bristle brush. Continue with steps 1-5.

A room decorated with an end table holding a vase and flowers and a tall wicker hamper in the background.

Did you know you can bleach wicker?

It is possible to lighten your basket depending upon your style preference! Learn how to bleach wicker in this post!

Don't miss our top cleaning products for cleaning all kinds of vintage thrift store finds! Read all about them here!

A dark brown bookshelf with various decorations including a wicker heart, some books, candles, and a plant.


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