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how to clean wicker baskets

How to Clean Wicker Baskets

Wicker baskets are a great decoration and organizational tool for any home. Keeping your baskets dirt and mold-free is essential to extending their lives and maintaining their beauty. If not properly cared for and cleaned, they can become breeding grounds for bacteria and mold. 

If you recently bought a wicker basket and have noticed dirt and stains on it, you must be wondering how to go about disinfecting it. So, here are our best tips on how to clean wicker baskets! 

What this article covers: 

What Are Wicker Baskets?

What are baskets made of? Most baskets are made of natural plant fiber and reeds, as these are easy to bend and form shapes with weaving. However, some are made from synthetic materials. 

What is a wicker basket? A wicker basket is any basket made from woven reeds and natural fibers like rattan, willow, reed, or bamboo. The weaving of the material gives them a rustic feel while making them very durable and sturdy.

how to clean a wicker basket

The natural material makes them quite delicate, and they require special handling, including keeping them unexposed to the elements. Excessive wind, sunlight, and even a dry indoor environment can cause these baskets to dry out and crack.

If your wicker basket has dried out, worry not. We’ve found from using this product that cleaning dried-out baskets helps refresh and hydrate them, protecting them from the elements and keeping them in excellent condition. 

Cleaning porous basket material can be a little tricky. The upside is that you don't need to use a lot of harsh chemicals to get them clean.

How Often Do You Need to Clean Wicker Baskets?

Based on our first-hand experience, the frequency of cleaning wicker baskets affects their lifespan. For instance, if you use your basket frequently in the garden or outdoors, you should clean it more often than if you mainly use it indoors. 

how to clean baskets

Wicker baskets that hold plants easily develop mold or mildew due to moisture. If you've noticed any mold growing on yours, you need to clean it immediately. Also, if you use the basket to store or serve food, you should clean it adequately after every use to prevent the growth of bacteria or other germs. However, if it’s a purely decorative basket, you can dust it weekly and clean it as thoroughly as needed.

What Materials Do You Need?

You don't need lots of specialized cleaning items to clean wicker baskets. You'll just need the following basic items:

  • A vacuum cleaner with a hose and brush
  • Two microfiber cloths
  • A small brush or soft toothbrush
  • Mild dishwashing liquid
  • A bottle of distilled white vinegar
  • Warm water

How to Clean Wicker Baskets

Before you begin cleaning your basket, remove any removable lining it came with. Clean and dry it separately before putting it back in. Now, let's get started on cleaning the wicker basket itself.

 how to clean woven baskets

In our experience, you can also use these methods to clean other natural fiber-woven items such as bread baskets, corner baskets, and heart-shaped baskets.

Removing Dust and Loose Soil

There are several methods you can use to remove dust and loose soil from your wicker basket.

Use a Vacuum Cleaner

  • Use a vacuum cleaner with an attachment specifically designed for cleaning furniture or upholstery to remove dust and dirt. This option is great because it doesn’t require any additional supplies you need to buy.
  • Start by going over the basket with the vacuum cleaner in its highest setting. This will get rid of the majority of dust and dirt.
  • Then, switch to a lower setting to remove any remaining particles.

Soft Brush

  • Sweep away dust and loose soil from your wicker basket using a soft brush or broom designed for cleaning wooden furniture.
  • Be sure to use very gentle strokes and avoid putting too much pressure on the basket. This method is great for maintaining your wicker basket in between vacuuming sessions or if you don’t have a vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment.

Microfiber Cloth

  • If your basket has dust, loose soil, and cobwebs, use a microfiber cloth to wipe away the debris.
  • Start from the top of the basket and slowly move down in small circles. This method will help you get into hard-to-reach crevices, allowing for more thorough cleaning.

can you wash wicker baskets

Cleaning Stains

Baskets are prone to stubborn stains. Whether it's your best bike basket, best dog bike basket, or wicker basket, you'll need a few tools to get rid of sticky messes.

  • Wipe down your basket with a dry microfiber cloth.
  • Get some warm water, soap, and white vinegar in a bowl and mix them together.
  • Dip the microfiber cloth into the soapy solution and wring out the water till none is dripping.
  • Gently scrub the stained area of your wicker basket with the cloth until the stain is removed.
  • Dampen another clean microfiber cloth with plain water and rinse off any soap residue 
  • Air-dry your basket away from direct heat and sunlight in an area with a constant supply of fresh air.

Cleaning Mold and Mildew

Mold and mildew can form on wicker baskets if they are left in damp, humid conditions. To remove them without damaging your basket, mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a bowl.

  • Dip a toothbrush or microfiber cloth into the mixture and wring it out so that it's damp but not dripping wet.
  • Gently scrub the affected areas of the basket with the cloth.
  • Use the toothbrush to reach between tight spaces and corners.
  • Dip a clean microfiber cloth in lukewarm water and rinse.
  • Let the basket air-dry away from direct heat and sunlight. 

how to clean rattan baskets


Although wicker baskets are delicate, they're very easy to clean and maintain. If you notice any mold or mildew growing on your basket, clean it immediately to prevent the growth from spreading. 

For regular maintenance of wicker baskets, dust them with a soft cloth or duster regularly to keep them looking their best. Additionally, store baskets in a dry place away from direct exposure to the elements. With proper care, you can ensure your wicker basket lasts for many years.   

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