Vintage Picnic Basket Floral Arrangement

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Vintage picnic basket floral arrangement

Summertime has me all kinds of inspired to do some more flower arranging, and my thrifted vintage picnic basket was the perfect piece to get creative with for this display!

A couple of weeks ago, I had the absolute joy of joining in with some of my blogging friends for “Thrifting With The Gals”. We each shared our vintage thrifting adventures in our Instagram Stories, and now today, we’re coming back together on our blogs to show what we created and how we decorated with our finds!

If you’re joining me from Stacy of Bricks-n-Blooms‘ gorgeous home and garden, then welcome! Stacy’s garden is so inspiring, and I always love seeing what she has growing from week to week.

Here at our farm, our butterfly bush is just about to burst into its big show within the next few days, but I couldn’t resist getting an early picture of this pretty bloom during our walk around the property the other night.

Truly, the flowers this year have been my greatest inspiration when it comes to decorating our home.

Back in the springtime, I started by creating a display from my collection of vintage milk glass vases and a rustic toolbox–all thrifted, of course!

Then, I moved on to create two large floral arrangements in our breakfast nook with a vintage French flair.

After all of that, I couldn’t resist giving our front porch and my potting bench a refresh…good gracious, I was really on a roll!

Today, I’ll be sharing what I created with the gorgeous vintage picnic basket that I thrifted last month, and I hope it inspires you for your next floral arrangement. Be sure to pin this post using the pinnable image below so you can find it again later!

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When I joined “The Gals” last month, I hadn’t yet done any research to learn about my vintage picnic basket. But since then, I’ve discovered quite a lot!

It turns out, this picnic basket was made by the country’s oldest basket company, called Basketville in Putney, Vermont. They started making baskets in 1842!

The company made baskets from oak and ash trees, and those baskets were used for agricultural, industrial, and domestic purposes for over 150 years. Sadly, the company closed their last remaining retail location a few years ago, but now continue to manufacture their baskets as a wholesaler to other large retailers.


Click For More Picnic Baskets!

The basket that I thrifted was made in the early to mid-1970s. What’s amazing to me is that it’s in spectacular condition for being 45-50 years old! My guess is that it was only rarely used by its previous owner, and that means that I really scored a great treasure.

Being that I’m a product of this same time period, I sure wish I looked as good as this basket after all these decades! Haha!

When I first spotted this vintage beauty, I immediately envisioned it filled with creamy-colored blooms and trailing greenery, so of course I was excited to try my hand at creating another large-scale arrangement for summer.

And–would you believe it?–I used only faux stems for this arrangement!

As much as I love all the fresh blooms around the farm right now, my allergies simply cannot tolerate bringing them inside our home. It’s so sad! But since I’ve had these allergies my entire life, I’ve become a bit of a faux flower snob, and I am more than a little picky about what I’ll purchase and use around our home.

{Related: 15 Faux Florals Under $5}

Most of the blooms I used in this arrangement–like the peonies and eucalyptus–were ones I’d already had in my stash for several years. Others were leftovers from past displays in our shop.

But since hydrangeas are one of my very favorite flowers that I use all around our home, I was running a little low to complete an arrangement of this size. I decided this would be a good time to test out a new brand and accomplish two things at once. (What can I say…I’m always looking for ways to be efficient!)

I ordered these from Amazon, and I have to say, I’m quite pleased.

While they’re not the most realistic hydrangeas in my collection, they are surprisingly realistic for the value price point. Typically, the hydrangeas I’ve purchased in the past are around $10-15 per stem, and they’re considered “real touch”–the highest quality you can buy.

Real touch artificial flowers are usually so realistic that you’ll be tempted to touch them to discover whether they are, or are not, real. Hence the name!

Also, real touch flowers tend to have more realistic stems and leaves, in addition to the life-like blooms.

So, are these the same as real touch flowers? Well…no. But they’re pretty darn realistic and also WAY more affordable. In a large grouped arrangement like this, they’re perfect.

When you receive them, they’ll be banded and a bit flattened inside a zippered pouch. All you need to do is cut the bands, and then blow them with a hair dryer for a minute or so. They’ll fluff right up!

I will definitely be ordering more of these, as they certainly passed my test of floral-snobbery!

To put this arrangement together, I started by fitting a cardboard box inside the picnic basket. This took up a lot of the internal space so that the flowers would be at the right height.

Then, I set a bunch of pint-sized mason jars on top of the box to hold all of my flowers. I just kept arranging and messing with them until I liked the way they flowed together. Since I’m in no way a pro when it comes to flower arranging, that part always takes me a really long time–but I also love how meditative it is. Very relaxing!

Finally, to prop the lid open and keep it from smashing my flowers flat, I used a chippy vintage spindle. Whenever I’m out looking for vintage finds, I always watch for spindles because they’re so useful in decor.

This one was especially perfect because I wanted something that would look pretty peeking out from between the flowers.

Do you spy it tucked in there?

As I thought about what else I’d do to decorate our summer table, I really thought that the flower arrangement needed to be the star of the show, so the only thing I added was the vintage runner with a crocheted edge.

It’s the perfect amount of simple farmhouse beauty so that nothing takes away from those beautiful blooms!

Vintage linens are one of my favorite things to find when I’m thrifting–in fact, just yesterday, I scored a set of 6 vintage linen napkins for only $3!! I can’t wait to put them to use!


I truly do think that this vintage picnic basket ranks as one of my favorite thrifted finds of all times!

Although I had been doing small arrangements in vases forever, this year was the first time I ever tried my hand at creating large-scale floral arrangements. And, gotta say…I think I’m hooked!

Getting together with my blogging buddies for this fun challenge really was a great way to engage my creativity, and I can’t wait for the next chance to do it again!

By the way…if you’re like me, and you love hunting for vintage treasures, be sure to snag my printable Vintage Hunting Journal!

This journal is how I keep track of all the amazing finds I score when I’m out and about, as well as the research I do to learn more about their history and value. And, if you like to resell the items you find, I even included tracking pages to help you with your listings!

Next up on this tour is my sweet friend, Ann of Dabbling & Decorating, who went on a thrifting adventure from Vermont to Maine! Ann always finds the best things on her thrifting trips!

After that, be sure to check out all of the ladies via the links below–you will be so inspired by the things they found and how they have decorated with them!

Stacy | Bricks n’ Blooms

Sonya | Sonya Burgess Blog

Rachel | The Ponds Farmhouse

Kristin | White Arrows Home

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  1. Kristi I adore this basket with the eagle on it. It’s fabulous and thanks so much for joining usπŸ™ŒπŸ»

    1. It was such a lucky find! I just love it! So fun to join you for Thrifting With The Gals, Ann…let's do it again soon! xo

  2. Kristi,
    You did such a great job styling the basket. What a great find. I have so enjoyed getting to know you better and so thankful you joined our thrifting adventures this month.

    1. I feel the same way, Rachel! I have admired your beautiful home for years, and it's been so fun to get to know you better over the past several weeks. xo!

    1. Isn't she a beauty?! So happy to have found this great treasure…I just love it, and I'm so glad you do too, Linda! xo

  3. Your thrifted floral picnic basket is absolutely gorgeous and thank you for sharing the blow dryer trick for the faux flowers. It was so fun being on the blog hop with you.

  4. This basket is amazing Kristi! And of course I loved how you styled it. So happy to see you thrifting with the gals this month.

  5. This is so pretty! Someone treated that basket with kid gloves for it to look so amazing after 45 to 50 years. Just, wow. Peonies are my favorite flowers, so I’m quite taken with this arrangement! Leaving it to be the star of the show was the perfect move! If you get a chance, we’d love to have you come by and share on Crafty Creators Link Party and Happiness is Homemade Link Party. I know I’m glad I found you and I think my readers will be too!

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