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How to Easily Upcycle Broken Plastic Baskets With Fabric

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This plastic basket upcycle is a quick and easy home organization idea. Learn how you can update your broken, cheap or old plastic baskets by wrapping them in fabric.

Books and art supplies placed inside fabric wrapped plastic baskets and then placed in front of a globe.

It is my favorite time of the month when I get together with my besties! Yes it is the International Bloggers Club Challenge. For those of you who are here for the first time, this is a monthly challenge that I participate in with my blogger friends who live all over the world.  We meet up each month to compare notes and see how we do things in our corner of the world.

This month we’re doing crafts with baskets. Now I have done lots of basket upcycles in fact I did one the other day. I simply painted it with chalk paint. Easy Peasy. But this time around I am not doing plain plastic baskets. I am going to show you how to easily upcycle a broken plastic basket.

Two broken plastic baskets.

You see I have these plastic baskets that needed a makeover and I really wanted to use those in the challenge.  I hope you don’t mind.  I like them but they are broken and missing their edges.  But they are very practical since you can put stuff in them for storage or to carry around. You can see how in the inner corners there is no edge and the blue basket has both edges missing in the front. 

Materials Needed To Upcycle a Plastic Basket

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I needed to find a way to hide the non-existent edges and so I found this fabric which was left over from an old curtain I had. Originally I had wanted to use denim but it proved really hard to work with.  Maybe next time I can try it with softer, worn out denim.

Blue striped piece of fabric.

How To Upcycle Plastic Baskets

The first step was to make sure that the fabric was large enough so that when I folded it over into the basket it would fit and cover the whole basket.

Placing the fabric under the green plastic basket.

I folded it over one end and tried to sew the fabric through the holes of the plastic but it was so hard.

Folding the fabric over the plastic basket.

After pricking my finger a few times I gave up and used glue instead. In my defense the fabric was really hard to pass a needle through.  It was one of those chintz fabrics that has a bit of a glossy finish but it had faded.

Folding the fabric on the other side over the basket.

Then I flipped up the sides and folded them over like you would when wrapping a gift with paper.

Folding the ends of the fabric.

They were pulled inwards and then glued onto the side and bottom of the plastic basket.

Gluing the fabric on the inside of the plastic basket.

I had two different sized pieces of fabric to use for the two plastic baskets and so I ended up wrapping them with the stripes going in different directions. But that’s alright, I think they look much more interesting that way.

2 fabric covered plastic baskets.

Can you tell that there is no edge there? If you can’t then I have done my job!

The edge of the fabric covered basket.
Baskets full of school supplies and books, placed next to a globe.

This has to be one of the easiest projects I’ve ever done. And it is a great way to hide the defects of the baskets. Plus with the right fabric these baskets look way better than they did bare.

Close up of the school supplies inside the basket.

I am using the baskets to store school things.  It’s an easy way to be able to grab things and take them with you. 

Books and art supplies placed inside fabric wrapped plastic baskets and then placed in front of a globe.

They come in handy for storage as well. I’ll be putting them on my Hejne shelving unit and placing towels inside.

Close up of the school supplies inside the basket.

While I was choosing fabrics for amazon I was reminded of all the pretty patterns and styles out there.  Did I ever mention that before I had kids I used to work for a textile company? I worked for the designer of the company. It was so much fun to watch the creative process of how a fabric pattern is developed.

Baskets full of school supplies and books, placed next to a globe.

And that is how to upcycle broken plastic baskets with fabric. An easy peasy project. Because really, would you have had the heart to throw these out, while they were still usable?

Using fabric to cover up defects in a broken plastic basket, #upcycle #fabricupcycle #plasticbins #storagesolutions #easystorage #easyrepair #DIYproject How to Easily Upcycle Broken Plastic Baskets with Fabric

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April J Harris

Wednesday 29th of May 2019

What a wonderful, sustainable craft, Mary! Your upcycled baskets look fantastic, you would have no idea they were broken! Thank you for sharing, and for being a part of the Hearth and Soul Link Party. I hope you are having a lovely week!


Monday 3rd of June 2019

I like to keep these secrets to myself April.

Debbie Roberts

Sunday 27th of August 2017

Hi Mary, it wasn't so long a go I got rid of some basket just like these, I did put them in recycling though, do I don't feel so bad. This is a clever idea, you'd never know it was a broken basket forming the basic shape and who doesn't need a basket or two? I can imagine you were in you element when you worked for a fabric designer! I can almost feel a chill in the air this morning! xx


Wednesday 30th of August 2017

I loved working for the fabric company Debbie and I was also able to get lots of fabric at a discount. Ever since then, which was a lifetime ago I have really come to love all the work that goes into creating a beautiful pattern. It is downright fall weather here and about time too. I hope it lasts for a few days at least.


Monday 28th of August 2017

Mary I adore those baskets! They can be what ever you want, I can even see some bread slices in them on a breakfast table setting. The fabric is so pretty too and I can´t believe how easy it was to whip these up and hide that they´re actually broken. Very cool!


Wednesday 30th of August 2017

See Katrin, I'm learning from you. Why kill myself with the needle and thread when I can just as easily do it with some glue. I also think this fabric is pretty neutral to go in the new apartment.


Monday 28th of August 2017

Wow, the baskets look so pretty! Great job :).


Wednesday 30th of August 2017

Thanks Theodora it would have been a shame to throw them out.

Michelle Leslie

Monday 28th of August 2017

Darn it, I could kick myself. We had some plastic baskets similar to yours Mary and they were all wonky and cracked. I should have kept them a while longer instead of donating them to the thrift store. Maybe they're still there ;-) I love your idea of covering them with fabric to hide the broken bits. It's a great way to recycle them because they are super functional


Wednesday 30th of August 2017

Exactly they are really functional. I've had mine for 15 years since the kids were small and they of course helped to the distressing of the baskets. But they are large and hold a lot of stuff so I didn't want to get rid of them.

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