How To Update A Basket (with decor transfers)

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How to update a basket (with decor transfers) and paint! Take that dated old, orangey basket and make it beautiful instead! Easy!

Hello beautiful friends! Happy Tuesday, it’s Trashy Treasure day! If you are new here, Trashy Treasure Tuesday falls on the second Tuesday of every month. Three of my friends and I get together and share our thrifty treasures.

pink box that says trashy treasures

Today I’m sharing how to update a basket with decor transfers. And paint! Lots of ways you can update an old basket. I will share some of my other basket makeovers further down at the bottom of the post.

How To Update A Basket

Here she is “before”…

orange basket on white bench

inside orange basket

Not sure what purpose that elastic served but it had to go. It was $10 which is more than I usually try to pay for an old basket but it was a nice, sturdy one in great shape!

But VERY orange. (like many of them are but this one was really dark orange)


And considering it was so darkly stained, I decided to use Bin Shellac-based primer to stop that stain from bleeding through my paint.

basket sprayed with bin primer

Which oddly looked like an amazing whitewashed color (because of the orange underneath). haha!

primed basket on counter

I mean, isn’t that pretty??
I’m itching to do another whitewashed basket makeover now. lol

When I pulled out all those staples I was left with all these holes.

inside primed basket

So I quickly filled them in with wood filler. Let it dry then sanded smooth.

white lid primed with filler


Prefer to shop on Etsy? I have an Etsy shop also, here!


The color I’m using is Plaster, the most beautiful soft, sweet yellow shade. Perfect for spring!

bottle of paint

I used this angled paintbrush because it was able to get into all of those flat basket-weaved areas well.

paintbrush with paint on it inside basket

I applied one coat to the whole thing with absolutely zero bleedthrough and full coverage.

painted outside of basket on counter

The top piece got two coats for extra coverage of the wood though.

the inside of the basket painted

Now let’s update the basket with transfers to kick it up a notch!


Once it was fully dry, I laid out a few transfers and decided on this one called Ruby Rose. It was one long one that fit (mostly) perfectly on the top of this basket.

transfer laying on top of basket

You can use the included wood transfer stick or use our Transfer Tool.

transfer tool and wood stick

Just rub to transfer, then peel back the clear sheet as you go.

rubbing the transfer tool over the transfer

If you are new to decor transfers, take a look at this comprehensive post I just wrote all about how to apply them here >>> How To Use Rub On Decor Transfers (Tips & More)

Usually, I like to let the transfers flow right down the sides like I did on this recent basket update. “How To Paint Wash A Basket

white basket with transfer

I considered it on this one…

basket with transfer laying over top

But I decided not to do it this time.

floral transfer on lid

I had one other piece left over from this transfer and decided to use it here on the inside of the lid.

transfer on inside of lid

This little sweetie went right here.

small transfer inside bottom of basket

In case you are wondering how I placed it with all those bumps of the basket weaving. Let me show you.

small transfer on basket up close

Just gently push the transfer where you want it to go. Simple!

small floral transfer up close


Once that was all done, I used our Polishing Pad to gently rub out any bubbles, make sure it was all smooth, etc.

polishing the transfer


Lastly, I added the Tough Coat Topcoat to seal the transfers. I only applied them where the transfers were, not the entire basket. Fusion paint is self-sealing so it is not necessary. But I did want to protect those transfers.

bottle of tough coat topcoat

The Updated Basket Reveal

pale yellow basket with floral transfer on top

It’s similar to the one I linked earlier but different paint color, etc.

pale yellow basket side view

I fell in love with that one but it found its way to a new owner with one of my giveaways.

basket with top open

I love adding a “surprise” on the inside when you open it.

But wait, that’s not all!! haha!

inside of basket with tiny transfer

And one on the bottom too.

No flowy overlap this time though! I kind of like the clean look of it stopping right there though. Nice for a change.

up close of corner of basket

The top.

floral transfer top view of basket

What could you use a large basket like this for? Lots of things really.
You could pack it up and make a picnic lunch with it.

basket sitting on white porch on sunny porch

basket on white bench in sun

Use it for blankets.

pretty basket on fireplace with blanket

Or extra throw pillows. (open so you can see that pretty lid)

floral basket with pillows inside

What would YOU use it for??

Here are a few other basket makeovers:

PIN it to save it!

How to update a basket (with decor transfers) and paint! Take that dated old, orangey basket and make it beautiful instead! Easy!

Hop on over to visit my friends’ makeover next!

trashy treasures before

  1. Salvaged Inspirations
  2. Prodigal Pieces
  3. Confessions of a Serial DIYer

I hope you have an amazing weekend! I am in one of my favorite places this week…Anna Maria Island! Yippee! See you when I get back! (if you want see some of this area, check out my past visits and posts here)



  1. Hi! Love the basket makeover! This looked like the one my Mother used for our summer picnics and park outings. Very nice memories ❤️ Just a mention: the elastic with the small lengths sectioned off is to hold your silverware or plasticware securely.
    A Reader—Cheryl in Texas

  2. The strap was for utensils! That was a classic picnic basket of mid century. It hurt a little to see you pull out the strap. 😥

  3. It’s so pretty now, Nancy! Just painting it makes such a difference, but that transfer takes it to another level.

  4. It looked soo much better after just the primer ! That pale yellow is so soft – it’s a great spring refresh for sure. The transfer added such a pretty detail.
    Very nice.

  5. Oh, Nancy! I love that basket! WOW! What a make-over, huh???? Well being so large it’s good for everything – but what I would use it for is to hold all my Tea Time magazines – I keep them b/c I am a tea party gal and it gives me inspiration and recipes and I cannot part with them.

  6. So pretty! I love the pale yellow with the transfer. Makes me want to try transfers, maybe on a thrifted tray I have. Thanks for sharing!

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