ReFab or DIY Some Wire Mesh Baskets, Y’all

Lately I’ve been wire basket ca-razy!…crushing on wire baskets all over the interwebs!

It’s just one little part of my latest fascination with rustic/industrial decor…My own little rebellion against all that perfect, cutesy and traditional décor. Which is just a tad ironic since these baskets have a cute, slightly traditional, dare I say, country look to them.

PicMonkey Collage

1. http://www.theartofdoingstuff.com/a-tisket-a-tasket-make-a-supercool-basketcopycatting-country-living-magazine/
2.
unkown : http://media-cache-ec3.pinimg.com/originals/04/d6/dd/04d6dd5e60d082a79550e4585aac19ed.jpg
3. http://homemadebycarmona.blogspot.com/2013/06/my-upstairs-hall-guest-corner.html
4. http://thatsmyletter.blogspot.com/2013/03/h-is-for-hardware-cloth-containers.html
5.
http://www.deannario.com/2011/05/homemade-vintage-locker-inspired-basket.html
6. 
http://craftyincanada.blogspot.ca/2012/09/new-laundry-basket.html 
7. http://www.etsy.com/listing/115233804/coffee-filter-art-hanging-light-ceiling?ref=exp_listing

When I first saw basket #1, I got so super excited. You see, I had picked up a decrepit wood-frame laundry basket from my favorite junky pile thrift store, with the intention of refabbing:

before_txt

But, because life happens and also because I couldn’t figure out what to use to replace the worn and tattered rattan covering, I didn’t get around to the refab for about a year or so.

Aaaaand, because we desperately needed a laundry basket in the bathroom for dirty towels, this eyesore ended being used as is for well over a year…ooooh, the shame!

Then I saw basket #1 above, and I knew I had found the right material for my laundry basket project. (Follow the links in the photo credits for some step by step action)

The wire mesh on most of these baskets are material called hardware cloth. If you don’t know, hardware cloth is about as utilitarian as it gets. To be quite honest (and why would I be anything else?) I’m not sure of it’s intended use outside of making chicken coops and such.

Where does one purchase such an item you ask? Big Blue, Big Orange, Medium Green, Little Red or any other purveyors of fine hardware supplies of course!

So here’s a quick rundown of what I did to un-shame my shameful laundry basket:

1. Took off the covering material. Kinda grody looking, right? Ewww

stripped

2. As you can see, the the frame came apart because it was only held together by a few tiny brads.  So I reinforced the corners with a few strategically placed screws:

screwed

3. Cleaned it off real good, then painted the frame:

painted

4. Then I lined the bottom of the frame with…what else…Contact paper, yay!

5. Then came the conundrum of what to do with the ugly lid. I took a chance on seeing exactly what IS under there?

woodlid

Yes it is! Wood, glorious wood!

woodpeeledtext

Tip: Rubbing Alcohol removes adhesive. That was the only way I removed most of the hideous covering on this lid. However…There were, unfortunately some parts that I could not remove. Maybe I was tired of scraping, but try hard as I might, I could not get it off…so I painted the lid too.

6. I used a staplegun to attach the hardware cloth to the frame. I used the sisal rope to ‘trim’ the basket, but I was not really pleased with the effect. Plus there were still all these staples showing through. 

alldone

7. To cover up the staples I hot glued flat strips of balsa wood to the frame, over the wire mesh.

mybasket3

Still not super pleased with the results…feels like it needs something. Maybe paint the balsa? Maybe paint the mesh? I dunno…

But using the hardware cloth inspired me to make other baskets, especially as I had so much left. I made one to hold extra TP in the bathroom:

mybasket

I made this basket using the hardware cloth and a piece of wood cut from a weathered pallet I had in my backyard.  It just occurred to me that spray painting the wire mesh might be a good idea, so I did, and I must say, I like it so much better than the plain mesh. It’s a nice contrast against the white TP.

mybasket2

I also made one for the kitchen to hold my breads and bagels:

breadbasket

What I love about Hardware cloth is that it holds its shape when bent. So you can either bend it into a shape on its own, like Basket #2 and #3 above or wrap it around a metal or wood frame like the rest of the baskets in this collection.
I hope that this has inspired you to go forth and make or refab some storage baskets of your own, and if you do, I wanna see them!

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