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DIY Paint Stick Bushel Basket


Summer is coming to an end which means Autumn is right around the corner (personally, my FAVORITE time of year!) This is the time of year when apples are a plenty at the farmer’s market, and you’ll even see some pumpkins and gourds popping up for Fall.  This is also my favorite time to go back to Wisconsin to visit my family.  They have an apple orchard harvest and my cousins and I used to get together, pick apples and have SOOOO much fun doing it.  Then we’d all come up with fun apple recipes to use while they were fresh, and even some that could be stored as applesauce and canned apples.

I love to see the bushel baskets…but let’s face it.  If we are getting apples (from the farmer’s market or picking them ourselves) we’ll use a bag! So adorable little bushel baskets may sit collecting dust. I say if you have them, dust them off and fill them with fruit!  And if you don’t have them, I have the perfect way for you to create your very own little bushel baskets for your home décor!  They are easy to do, inexpensive, and will make you look like a pro! And you will never guess what I used to create these! (Unless, of course, you look at the title and see that I let the cat out of the bag!) Here is how to get started.

You Will Need:

  • 15 – 20 Paint stir sticks 12” long (you can buy these online, at your local hardware store, and some places will even give them to you for free! I’m using 12” for the demo, but you will see that I used 6” sticks as well for a smaller size.)
  • Foam core OR paper plates
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Paint or stain for the base
  • White acrylic paint for the overlay to create a “white-washed” look
  • Paint brush (inexpensive chip brushes work the best for this)
  • Embroidery hooks in two different sizes (I’m using 6” and 8” for the demo I’m showing you, but you can see that I used a variety of sizes for the other baskets so it’s up to you how big you want these!)
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • Sand paper
  • OPTIONAL: Ribbon
  • OPTIONAL: Burlap


  1. Check out the quality of your paint sticks. If they are a little rough and you think you might get splinters, take some sand paper and smooth them down.  They don’t need to be perfect, but we do want them to be safe!
  2. Take your paint sticks and embroidery hoops and paint or stain them.Set aside to dry.
  3. Once dry, take the smaller embroidery hoop and set that on your workspace.
  4. Take the flat side of your paint stick and using hot glue, glue it to the inside of the embroidery hoop. You will want a little space between each paint stick, but it doesn’t have to be perfect.  Since they will be splaying out to look like a basket (and to reach the larger embroidery hoop), you will want to glue them at a slight angle out.
  5. Continue this all the way around the inside of your hoop.
  6. If you have the paint sticks that get smaller (like a handle on one end), use that indent to place your next embroidery hoop. If you have plain sticks, just go about 3”-4” down.
  7. Place the larger embroidery hoop around the OUTSIDE of your sticks. This will be a little awkward to get them all to behave, but you can do it!
  8. Using hot glue, glue one of the sticks to the inside of the hoop. Hold this in place until it cures (just several seconds).
  9. Go to the opposite side of the hoop to glue the stick to that. Once these are done, it becomes a foundation almost for the rest of your craft project and it won’t be so awkward to hold it in place.
  10. Glue the remaining sticks to the hoop.
  11. Take your foam core and set your structure on top of it and trace around the inside of the basket.
  12. Cut the foam core out and dry fit it to the bottom of your basket. Make any necessary adjustments for size.
  13. Once you know it will fit, add hot glue to the foam core and attach it to the bottom of your basket.
  14. You can paint the bottom of this, but it really won’t be seen so it’s up to you.
  15. Take a chip brush and some white paint and add a bit of dry brush to the outside of your basket.
  16. If you would like your basket to look a little more rustic, you can take some sand paper and sand back the color a bit.
  17. Fill it with apples, pumpkins, gourds or even treats! Enjoy!


  • You can use any kind of sticks that you want, they don’t have to be paint sticks!  You can use smaller sticks, larger, or even much smaller like I used here…tongue depressors. You do need to use embroidery hoops, however, as they act as the structural integrity of the basket.
  • Add ribbon to your basket to make it a little more festive and fancy!
  • Filling your basket with burlap will help make it look more rustic, or you could choose fabric that matches your home décor.
  • These don’t just have to be for your own home décor- they make wonderful gifts…for hostesses or even our furry friends. See, I even made one full of Dog Treats for our furry friends on the show!

Are you ready to get festive for Fall? Share with us all of your Holiday crafts and DIYs on Instagram and Twitter @paigehemmis 

If you missed the episode check it out by heading over to Home & Family!



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