Ever since people discovered that twisting and weaving grasses, vines or slender twigs together created a versatile and useful form we have been graced by the marvelous, iconic wicker basket. Shapes suited to individual usage became a staple and the weavers were in great demand. Patterns and color were introduced to identify the maker, as well as the owner. From ancient finds to paintings through modern applications these baskets are still one of the most highly used art forms known. Developments in styles and weaving patterns not only identified the place of creation but showed highly prized talent in artistic expression.
Natural materials varied depending on the local readily available supply. This explains the willow, grapevine and rattan that have found their way into our decor as regionally inspired items. Though wicker and rattan are used rather interchangeably in the current language, wicker is a weaving method while rattan is an often used vine material. As opposed to flat weaving in baskets like split oak, the wicker basket bends round over round. Round stays support and shape the final item by being worked with small, flexible branches, hand spun ropes of grass or local vines. Natural dyes and colorants like berries and flowers were used to add interest and individuality.
With the wicker basket as a go-to for business and home, when displaying all manner of goods, the choice of material comes down to purpose. If you are displaying food items then being able to thoroughly clean the basket takes the choice into the plastics or resins. Plastic Wicker Baskets are durable, strong, completely washable while maintaining visual impact means there is less concern about a breakdown of the basket or contamination of the product. Mold and mildew resistance gives these baskets a practical advantage when working with unwrapped foods like bread, fruit, and cheeses. The fact that the reeds are plastic does not detract from the beauty of the basket itself.
The smooth surface of the plastic wicker also makes it a preferred material for offering delicate fabrics for view. Silk scarves and knitted designs can snag on natural baskets as the fibers loosen from the vines or branches. Having a gorgeous item made unsalable by your own display is a costly error. There are times and places for all the forms of wicker so take into account what your purpose is before selecting.
Shapes and forms, color and size are all part of the options open to you. In a boutique style setting, clothing or food, having lovely hand baskets for the shoppers can set the tone for their experience. Passing between displays of import or local specialty foods or handcrafted weaving takes on a more immersive note. The farmer's market, with a sturdy basket, allows the shopper to carry their selections without being worried about paper or thin plastic bag failure. That function also translates to pick your own locations so that the visit has a lasting texture to the memory.
Classic natural shades or modern tones make plastic wicker a reliable designing staple. Let your imagination run wide open when making choices for shop or craft booth. Even the most intricate of designs, done in resin or plastic, provide durability that makes it a money wise decision. There is no reason to forego the attractive, evocative basket when even rain can't undo this artisan touch. Large storage units or small trays, single handle, double or none at all, the options are boundless. Wicker, the weaving method whether natural materials or resins, as a legacy in basketry will likely be part of our culture for far into the future. Take full advantage of newer materials to include or expand your use of wicker in your business.
Almac has been serving the community and businesses for over 50 years, bring the best in display and gift material products available. For a complete introduction to our company, philosophy, and product line please contact us.