Wicker storage baskets have been in use for centuries, and that’s no exaggeration. While wicker may go in and out of high fashion from time to time, there’s no doubt that it’s something that has long played a significant part in interior design and is both functional and stylish too. Modern manufacturing techniques may have changed and improved the best qualities wicker has, and also enabled the products rendered to be sold at a much more affordable price. However, it’s true to say that essentially, the art of construction and the methods of weaving items have remained the same. Useful and beautiful too – what more could you ask for in your home or business?
A Potted History Of The Wicker Baskets
The longest surviving examples we have date back to Egyptian times, where grasses and reeds were crafted into wicker storage baskets, furniture and boxes, among other things. From there, wicker has continually featured in civilisations as diverse in time and sophistication as the Iron Age, the Roman Empire and into the 16th and 17th century Europe. It perhaps reached the height of its popularity in Victorian Britain, but it was not only valued for its versatility and inexpensiveness in the UK. In North America too it became immensely sought after in the 19th century, and the tradition goes on today. Antique wicker specimens are increasingly favoured by collectors; and what’s more, reproduction and new designs are emerging all the time, fuelled by interest from fashion- and cost-conscious consumers. Nowadays, many modern manufacturers opt for synthetic materials for their wicker baskets. However, there is still plenty of call for the older ways, and a lot of people prefer the traditional look and feel of natural, organic materials such as willow, rattan, or bamboo for their home. It’s all a matter of personal taste and ensuring the product you buy is fit for purpose.
Where Wicker Basket Products Come From And What They Are Used For
Some of the best and most sought after wicker come from the willow, which is deciduous and can be grown as a tree or a shrub. The term ‘wicker’ refers to the flexible branches and twigs of any plant that are used in weaving display wicker baskets or other designs. However, willow is ideal as it is very fast-growing and its offshoots are both strong and flexible. Plants are cut back each season, and the switches are stripped of their bark, then soaked for a length of time. This softens them and helps increase their pliability for weaving. It’s important to remember that because a wicker basket is a natural product, there will likely be small variations in colour across its surface. However, this is something that only serves to enhance the natural beauty of the end product. Wicker can be varnished, painted or left in its natural state. The flexibility of the switches means they can be woven by craftspeople into virtually any shape, sometimes around a sturdy metal frame for furniture or round switches of wicker itself. This pliability enables it to be used for a huge range of items, from wicker baskets to trays, hampers, pet carriers and beds to larger items such as furniture. Plants like kidney vetch look beautiful in wicker baskets outside. The possibilities are near-endless.
Wholesale Wicker Baskets Are Great For Business Use Too
But wicker is not something that can only be used to beautify the home environment. In fact, it also has many advantages in the business environment. Wicker gift baskets form the basis of great corporate gifts with an added personal touch. If you’re looking for something different to give clients and suppliers at Christmas or as a thank you for their business, why not buy and fill one with goodies? Perhaps you run a guest house or larger establishment and are looking for inexpensive but durable decorative touches for rooms and public areas. Wicker is a warm, natural material that adds a touch of homeliness to makes your guests feel at ease. Wicker storage baskets are also particularly sought after in the retail world to display goods to their best effect. It can enhance displays of natural products, emphasising their down to earth, organic nature. Alternatively, it makes a great contrast when filled with more modern goods. What’s more, it’s so light it can be easily moved and rearranged for cleaning or when you want to change your display. In short, wholesale wicker baskets can be an asset for any business.