How to Keep Wicker Baskets from Drying Out: Essential Care Tips

wicker basket drying out

If you have wicker baskets in your home, you know how important it is to keep them from drying out. Wicker baskets make beautiful additions with their woven texture and natural materials. But all that beauty comes at a cost – they can dry out if not cared for properly. If you want your wicker baskets to maintain their lustrous appearance and sturdy structure for seasons of use, some simple care strategies are essential.

  • Direct sunlight and excessive heat can cause wicker baskets to dry out quickly.
  • Moisturizing your wicker baskets is an essential step in preventing them from becoming brittle.
  • Regular cleaning and dusting are essential for maintaining the moisture and appearance of wicker baskets.

Understanding Wicker Baskets

Wicker baskets are a popular choice for home decor and organization due to their natural and rustic look. They are typically made of woven natural fibers, such as rattan, willow, or bamboo. While they are sturdy and durable, wicker baskets are prone to drying out and becoming brittle if not properly cared for.


Why Wicker Baskets Dry Out

Wicker baskets are made of natural fibers that require proper moisture levels to maintain their flexibility and strength. Furthermore, if exposed to prolonged or excessive heat and sunlight, these fibers can dry out quickly, causing the basket to become brittle and break easily. Similarly, it’s important to take steps to maintain proper moisture levels in your wicker baskets to prevent this from occurring. To do so, homeowners can employ various strategies.

For one, storing baskets in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight when not in use can safeguard fibers from dehydration. Additionally, occasionally lightly misting the baskets with water restores lost moisture without soaking the woven material. Likewise, for baskets outdoors, positioning them in partial shade versus unprotected sun lessens solar drying effects. Moreover, products designed specifically for wicker care are formulated to replenish moisture content gradually without producing mildew or rotting. In summary, minor maintenance like seasonal conditioning protects weaves and lengthens basket lifespan. Homeowners who properly sustain moisture levels enjoy durable natural storage for years to come.

Maintaining Moisture in Wicker Baskets

Propеr maintеnancе of wickеr baskеts involvеs rеgular moisturizing, avoiding dirеct sunlight and hеat, clеaning, and dusting, and propеr storagе. By following thеsе еssеntial carе tips, you can prеsеrvе thе moisturе and appеarancе of your wickеr baskеts for yеars to comе.

In thе nеxt sеctions, wе will discuss еach of thеsе carе tips in dеtail, providing stеp-by-stеp instructions and bеst practicеs to hеlp you kееp your wickеr baskеts in good condition.

Avoiding Direct Sunlight and Heat

The key to preventing moisture loss in wicker baskets is avoiding direct sunlight and excessive heat. If left in the sun or near a heat source, wicker baskets can dry out quickly, causing them to become brittle and lose their shape.

To protect your baskets from these elements, keep them away from windows, heating vents, and radiators. If you have no choice but to place your baskets near a window, consider using curtains or blinds to filter out the sunlight.

In addition to sunlight and heat, wicker baskets can also be affected by changes in humidity. To prevent moisture loss during dry weather conditions, consider using a humidifier or placing a small dish of water near your baskets to increase the humidity in the air.

By taking these simple precautions, you can help ensure your wicker baskets stay in good condition and retain their moisture and shape.

Regular Moisturizing

lemon and essential oils

To keep your wicker baskets from drying out, regular moisturizing is a must. You can use a variety of methods to keep your baskets moisturized, such as:

  • Applying lemon oil or mineral oil: These oils help keep the wicker’s fibers moisturized and supple. Apply a small amount of oil using a soft cloth or a brush, making sure to cover all the nooks and crannies of the basket.
  • Using a humidifier: Placing a humidifier in the room where you keep your wicker baskets can help maintain moisture in the air, preventing the baskets from becoming dry and brittle.

It’s important to note that while moisturizing your wicker baskets, you should avoid using too much water, as this can cause the wicker to warp or swell. Instead, use a spray bottle to mist the baskets lightly before applying the oils or placing them in a humid room.

By regularly moisturizing your wicker baskets, you can help maintain their moisture levels and prevent them from becoming dry and brittle, thus extending their lifespan.

Cleaning and Dusting

Kееping your wickеr baskеts clеan and dust-frее is crucial for maintaining thеir moisturе and appеarancе. Hеrе arе stеp-by-stеp instructions on how to clеan and dust your baskеts without causing any damagе:

  1. Remove any loose debris: Remove any loose debris from your basket with a soft-bristled brush or vacuum cleaner. Be sure to use a brush with soft bristles to avoid causing damage to the wicker.
  2. Spot clean: If there are any stains or spots on your basket, gently spot-clean them with a damp cloth. Be sure to use a mild, non-abrasive cleaner for this process. Dry the area immediately after cleaning to prevent moisture buildup.
  3. Dust: Use a soft, dry cloth to dust your basket regularly. This process will prevent dust buildup, which can trap moisture and cause long-term damage.
  4. Avoid water: Never immerse your wicker baskets in water or use a wet cloth to clean them. Water can cause the wicker to become brittle and lead to drying out.

By following these cleaning and dusting tips, you can keep your wicker baskets looking great for years to come.

Storage Tips

Proper storage is crucial in protecting wicker baskets from drying out. When not in use, keep your baskets in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight and heat sources, such as radiators and fireplaces. Excessive heat and sunlight can cause the wicker to dry out quickly, leading to brittleness and breakage.

If you must store your baskets in a humid environment, such as a basement or garage, use a dehumidifier to control the moisture level. Avoid storing your baskets in damp areas, as this can cause mold and mildew to form, damaging the wicker.

When storing multiple baskets, stack them on top of each other with a protective layer between each basket, such as a sheet or towel. This will prevent them from rubbing against each other and causing damage.

Repairing Damaged Wicker

Even with proper care and maintenance, wicker baskets may develop small damages that can lead to drying out. Repairing these issues will help prolong the life of your baskets and prevent them from becoming brittle. Here are some tips on how to repair minor damages:

  1. For small cracks or breaks, gently apply wood glue along the damaged area and hold the pieces together until the glue dries.
  2. If there are loose or broken strands, use a pair of sharp scissors to trim the damaged area and replace it with new strands. Secure the new strand with glue.

It’s important to note that any repairs should be made as soon as possible to prevent further damage. Ignoring damages can lead to larger problems and decrease the lifespan of your wicker baskets.


Keeping your wicker baskets in good condition requires regular care and attention. By following the essential care tips outlined in this article, you can prevent your baskets from drying out and ensure their longevity and appearance for years.

Remember to avoid direct sunlight and heat, regularly moisturize your baskets, clean, and dust them, and store them properly. If your wicker baskets do develop small damages, be sure to repair them promptly to prevent further drying out.

With these practices in place, your wicker baskets can continue to add beauty and functionality to your home for a long time to come.