Easy Wicker-Look Waterproof Basket! DIY Garden Craft

5 Materials
2 Days

We made this basket both waterproof and rustic for our garden … and it was easy! We love the antique country look. We think it will look great with holiday décor too! If you enjoy this project, check out the longer video with more tips here, link!

Simple to make, this basket can stay outdoors indefinitely

Easy, informal weaving makes this project a snap. A plastic laundry basket is the base.

Inside the basket is a flower pot by Southern Patio™ we found at HomeDepot™ for just $8. If we make a hole in the bottom of the basket and use the resin pot for a liner, we can plant anything from roses, to potatoes, to Spring bulbs … and not worry about mice or voles nibbling from below.

Come rain or shine, this basket is ready for outdoor duty year round.

We used dog toys for the handles and we think they are the best finishing touch. Found on sale at PetSmart™, they were just $4.00 for two. We removed stuffed toys from them with nail scissors and stained the nylon rope before attaching them with loops of rope.

We were shopping online for a round, brown plastic laundry basket when this one appeared on the curb in our neighborhood. We waited a day, then swooped! It's a vintage basket worth $45 online. Since some of the basket will show after weaving, the main appeal for us is its color.

Keep your eyes open for good plastic baskets for this project, or you can start with a new basket. The one on the left is from the Dollar Store and the metal one on the right which would also work well, is from Amazon.

We used an assortment of waterproof rope for the basket. A) Is a soft polypropylene rope by SGT Knots on Amazon that comes in a number of colors; B) a favorite is a brown flag-pole rope; C) a sturdy, but still bendable, ProManila rope from Walmart. All three ropes are 1/4". We also bought nylon string in brown from Walmart. You'll need about 300 feet for this project.

We cut 15 foot lengths of rope and used clear tape on the ends for ease in weaving. We started at the bottom of the basket. Because the rope is 1/4" in diameter, the weaving goes quickly.

We tucked loose ends of rope inside, knotting where necessary to hold the weaving firm. The brown flag-pole rope made pretty details.

As the weaving neared the top, we wrapped the top rim with rope while there were still lots of openings in the basket. The basket becomes very sturdy with all this rope … not at all like a plastic laundry basket. The finished basket will not blow away in a strong wind.

When the rim was complete, we continued weaving until we were an inch from the top. It was time to make the handles. We took these rope circles from new dog toys, stained them with wood stain, and let them dry for 24 hours.

The dog toys already had tape on the rope … it was originally hidden with stuffing inside of a fabric ball. We covered the tape by wrapping them with nylon string.

We used about 12 loops of rope to attach the handles. You can see a hint of color remains on the handles under the stain (we love that detail!) We finished the last inch of weaving and tinted the entire basket with redwood stain, giving it 24 hours to dry.

When we took this photo by the river, another photographer stopped by and said, "That's going to be beautiful!" To us, the waterproof aspect and the fact that this basket will last 'forever' is the most beautiful part.

Now we are thinking ahead to Christmas! If you'd like to see our web page with more photos of this project, click here.

Resources for this project:

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Stephie McCarthy
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 11 questions
  • Darrel Bickel Darrel Bickel on May 05, 2021

    Shouldn't the basket be painted, if that would hold, to keep UV light from making it brittle and falling apart? Looks nice

  • Rhonda Rhonda on May 06, 2021

    Did this cost about $100 to make?

  • Jessedean Jessedean on May 10, 2021

    The ropes are expensive to buy. Do you know where you can get them not so costly.


Join the conversation

3 of 111 comments
  • Launa Elaine Strickland Launa Elaine Strickland on May 09, 2021

    Gorgeous result! Well done!

  • Lisa West Lisa West on May 12, 2021

    dollar general carries the metal basket as well. Just check weekly as they do go fast. Also the dollar tree has been sticking bigger baskets lately to. So for those of us who don't want to wait for shipping from Amazon or the like can start right away. This is a great project and will look good any where in or outside the home. The colors are really lovely to. Nice neutrals. Goes with just about any decor.

    • Stephie McCarthy Stephie McCarthy on May 12, 2021

      Stores have waterproof rope on sale at times too. I just got 100 feet of thick waterproof cord for $6.00 at HomeDepot. Our brown basket showed up on a curb for free.