The Right Way to Clean and Care for Wicker Baskets

Due to wicker's woven structure, the material quickly becomes a hub for dust if it isn't cleaned regularly.

wicker baskets on bedroom floor
Photo: Anastasiia Krivenok / GETTY IMAGES

Wicker baskets are a storage staple in many homes. From blankets and toiletries to linens and pantry items, the containers offer an aesthetically pleasing way to hold a myriad of miscellaneous household items. But because of their woven texture, they can quickly become a hub for dust and dander. While it's important to clean wicker baskets regularly, it can be confusing to know which cleaning supplies are safe to use on the material. In actuality, cleaning wicker baskets is quite easy and can be done with a few common household supplies.

How Often to Clean Wicker Baskets

Routine cleaning of your wicker baskets should be done regularly. "Add cleaning wicker baskets to your quarterly cleaning routine," says Jennifer Parnell, co-founder of Humble Suds. "Dust can collect on them very easily and it's easier to clean the baskets if they are cleaned more than once a year."

Materials Needed

Make sure you have these cleaning supplies on hand before getting started.

  • Paintbrush
  • Vacuum with brush attachment
  • Microfiber cloth(s)
  • Dish soap
  • White vinegar

How to Dust Wicker Baskets

While deep cleaning can be done quarterly, a regular light dusting should be done monthly to prevent dust and dirt buildup. "Wicker baskets tend to collect dust due to their woven texture and the small spaces between the fibers," says Vera Peterson, president of Molly Maid, a Neighborly company. Regular dusting and cleaning can help prevent buildup." Take the basket outside for dusting to ensure the particles aren't reintroduced into the home.

  1. Empty the basket.
  2. Use a paintbrush to dust between the wicker strands.
  3. Vacuum the inside of the basket with the brush attachment.

How to Clean Wicker Baskets

You can use the same methods and cleaning supplies whether you're cleaning natural or synthetic wicker baskets. "However, if the wicker is synthetic, it will not absorb moisture," says Parnell. "You can apply more all purpose cleaner or soapy water and it will not damage the basket."

  1. Empty the basket.
  2. Dust following the steps outlined above.
  3. Combine dish soap and water into a spray bottle.
  4. Spray a microfiber cloth with the solution or a non-toxic cleaner and wipe down the basket. Do not oversaturate the towel or cloth.
  5. Let air dry.

How to Remove Mildew From Wicker Baskets

It's important to ensure no moisture is left behind when cleaning wicker baskets, as it can lead to mold or mildew growth. If you notice spots of mildew on your wicker, clean it off using white vinegar and water.

  1. Wipe the basket clean with a microfiber cloth and water.
  2. Mix a solution of 1 part white vinegar and 4 parts water in a spray bottle.
  3. Apply the solution to a microfiber cloth and wipe the affected areas.
  4. Wipe the surface with regular water.
  5. Let air dry.

How to Care for Wicker Baskets

Cleaning your wicker baskets regularly will ensure they lost longer, but there are some other steps you take to preserve this material. "To extend the life of your wicker baskets, store them in a dry place," says Peterson. "Avoid letting moisture build up on the surface." Wicker baskets can warp in high humidity conditions, so be sure to keep a normal humidity in your home and wipe the surface dry if moisture builds up.

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