Decorating the Christmas tree is a wonderful tradition for the family. I love how a tree reflects your own personality.
How to Make a Basket-Filled Christmas Tree
You can decorate a holiday tree with miniature baskets for a rustic theme. It's easy to do and not very expensive. It's a great way to display a collection of little hand-woven baskets. These tiny collectibles look charming on small trees. I use a 3-foot tall one. It doesn't take too many to fill it up.
Years ago, I took several classes in basket weaving. It's not an easy craft, and I gave up after making one heart-shaped basket and 3/4ths of an apple basket. Still, I love baskets but lack the space to collect full-sized ones. I started finding tiny baskets at yard sales, flea markets, and even the local discount store.
The best of my collection hangs on two racks in my breakfast room. The lesser examples are stashed away with the Christmas decor. They decorate the three-foot Christmas tree in my dining room each December, so I have an annual opportunity to enjoy them once again.
What You'll Need
- A small tree
- Little baskets
- Ribbon or yarn
- String of lights (optional)
- A tree skirt
1. Collect the Baskets
Collect a variety of miniature baskets throughout the year. They come in many shapes and colors. You can spot these at dollar stores or yard sales. Usually, they are priced quite low. I like little things, but still have to curb my collecting instincts. I don't feel guilty with these as they store away quite compactly in a single box.
I like the look of a variety of baskets rather than all the same. My tree includes vintage baskets and new ones of all shapes.
2. Find a Small Tree to Decorate
Get a small tree. The three-foot artificial tree works well with tiny baskets. It's small enough to tuck into a dining room or an entryway or even feature on a tabletop. This size stores away quite compactly for next season.
I found mine at Walmart at the after-Christmas sale for just $3 a few years back. It even had lights already on it. It was such a good deal, that I bought three of them and decorated each one with a different theme.
My entryway has one with pinecones and items from nature on it. My guest room little tree has ornaments that are all glass, and it's really sparkly. The basket tree goes in my dining room adjacent to the great room where we spend a lot of time.
I place the diminutive tree on a box to give it a little elevation.
3. Start Decorating: Tips for Hanging the Baskets
Set up the tree, then hang the baskets on the branches. It's easy to slip the handles onto the branches or tie them on with red yarn bows or ribbon. You can use gold thread to tie them on the tree as well.
I put the larger baskets lower down and the smaller ones near the top where you can see them better. Some that are a little too large get placed around the base of the tree.
Some don't have handles so just tuck those into the branches close to the trunk of the tree.
4. Fill the Baskets
Fill some of the baskets with varied objects for an element of surprise. One of my baskets has two hens in it. They're really old ones, possibly from the late 1800s, and they just seem right in their basket.
You could put some candy in some.
5. Add a Cover to Hide the Tree Base
Place a colorful skirt around the base to hide the stand. This could be a scarf, a shawl, or a length of fabric from your sewing stash. I use some red fabric with a theme of teddy bears for my tree-skirt. Since it isn't hemmed, I just turn the edges under, and it looks fine.
Since I put the tree on a box to add some height to it. Therefore, it needs more fabric to hide that than if the tree were placed on the floor.
6. Place Some Plush Toys Around the Base
I don't put gifts under this tree, they go under the big tree in the living room. So, I cluster some stuffed Christmas toys around the base. These go on sale at deep discounts after Christmas. Look in the pet section of the store too for dog and cat toys with a Christmas theme. Just the right size.
7. Place the Tree Topper
Use a straw star or cornhusk doll for the tree topper. That harmonizes with the natural materials of the baskets.
My 2019 Display
Warnings and Tips
- If you place the holiday tree near a window, be aware that the sun can bleach the color out of baskets that have dyes used on them.
- The smaller the tree you use, the fewer baskets you will need to fill it out.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Questions & Answers
Question: Where are some places to find baskets like these little ones?
Answer: Look in your local dollar store, in the craft section at Walmart, and go to yard sales. I find the most unique ones at yard sales, some are vintage baskets. Often they are just a quarter each there.
© 2018 Virginia Allain
Tell Me About Your Christmas Tree Decorating
PoetikalyAnointed on December 16, 2018:
This is such a sweet idea and I love how you've decorated the tree. It harmonizes well with the room.
I love the baskets themselves.
Linda Jo Martin from Post Falls, Idaho, USA on December 15, 2018:
Very cute, Virginia! What a great idea. I really like how you're putting surprises in the baskets. Maybe even a gift for a loved one, if it is small enough?