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Make It: Upcycle A Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

Can you have enough baskets? I don't think so. Here is a fun and easy way to upcycle those super inexpensive thrift store baskets you can find anywhere.   

 

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

I found these two baskets for 25 cents each at my favorite local thrift store. They are the perfect size for what I call "drop zones" for random things I need to set down.

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

 

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

 

I am personally loving embroidered straw hats and totes. This look on a hat or tote is totally a summer vibe, but I thought the idea could be used year round in home decor. The plan was to attempt it on the 25 cent basket for my entryway. [Left Photo: Koko Polenki; Right Photo: Smallable.com]

Materials

 

Here is what you need:

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn
Source: Yarn: Hobby Lobby; Chalk Pencil, Scissors, & Upholstery Needles: Joann
  • Basket: I chose the round basket because it had a tighter basket weave. It looked like a better option for stitching writing.
  • Yarn: You do not want thick yarn but you don't want thin string either. I got mine here.
  • Chalk Pencil or Fine Tip Dry Erase Marker: I used the dry erase marker so you could see my tutorial. Next time, I will use a fabric chalk pencil. The dry erase did easily wipe off on my basket. I am sure this is not the case for all baskets.
  • Scissors
  • Upholstery Needle

Step

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

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Write your word on the basket. I wanted the word "stuff" because this little basket was going to hold my stuff. If you are using a dry erase marker, first test it on the back of your basket to see if you can wipe the marks off.  I free handed the word, and had to erase it a couple of times. I used a disinfectant wipe to erase my lines. A baby wipe would work as well.

Step

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

String your needle. I tried to double my string at first thinking the stitching would go faster. It was just harder to feed through the basket so I did a single string and made the writing thicker by repeating the stitch.

Step

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

Start your stitch on the back and tie a knot to secure the yarn. Do not cut the excess string immediately. Leave a little excess so you can tie off the string when you need to start a new one.

Step

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

 

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

 

Stitch along your lines.

I will tell you this might take some time, depending on the basket. The stitches would be much easier on a straw basket. Give yourself a little grace with the stitches. I was okay with my lines not following the markings perfectly because I knew the dry erase pen would wash off.  There is not an easy 1,2,3... for how to make a stitch. I simply stitched in a way that the letters would take shape. I learned that sometimes if a stitch would not stay in a direction I wanted it to go, I could get it to stay in place by tying it off in the back and starting a new string.

I would also advice ending strings often. This will help you if you don't like the way your letter is looking. I didn't like how part of the letter "f" was turning out so I used a seam ripper and my scissors to undo the letter. Since I had used another string for the other half of the letter I didn't have to rip out the part I liked. 

Step

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

 

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

 

To tie off your stitches. You will do this the same way for a new string and when you are completely done. To do so, tie a knot. For extra security, feed the string through one of the back stitches. Leave a little excess on the end to be able to tie a knot with the start of the new string.

Step

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

When you are all done, clean up the back of your basket by cutting any excess strings.

Step

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

Finally, clean off your chalk or dry erase markings with a wet rag. I used a disinfectant wipe.

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

My advice is don't try to make it perfect. With some baskets this is not possible. I did my best to make it readable with clean lines. A straw basket would be much easier to stitch perfectly straight stitches.

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

This project could be used to monogram a smaller or larger basket to hang on the wall. It also could be a unique way to label a storage basket like this one

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn

For me, my basket is used for a drop zone for my keys, mail, and....well, stuff.

Make It: Upcycle a Thrift Store Basket With Yarn
Pin It: Yarn Embroidered Thrift Store Basket
If you love simple and inexpensive DIY projects, check out this tutorial for a stylish task lamp or this post on how to make a stylish pillow from thrift store clothes.

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