Sunday, February 19, 2012

EASY Easter Basket Liner Tutorial

Linking to Kelly's Korner (2/8/2013)! I messed up and measured wrong on one of my measurements, the INSIDE diameter is not actually 10 in it was 11 3/4 in. The tutorial itself is right, just make sure you write down correct measurements when you measure your basket! Thanks to the reader who showed me my mistake in the comments! Please also check out my post on a DIY Menu board and the DIY Valentine Heart wall hanging I did inspired from a pin on Pinterest! Also, I would love for  you to follow me on Pinterest!

I LOVE Pottery Barn's Easter baskets and the cute liners that go in them but I seriously could never bring myself to spend that much money on a basket! I like the idea of having a nice basket for my kids that they can use year after year but I STILL couldn't make myself spend that much money. Last year, I found a beautiful, big basket for my daughter at Hobby Lobby and attempted to make a liner for it. It turned out OK, but honestly, I knew I could do better. I had to make one for my son this year (his first Easter!) so I decided to make a new one for my daughter, as well.
I googled Easter basket liner patterns and tutorials and I found pretty much NOTHING. What I did find was confusing but it did help guide me in the right direction as to how to go about making them. As I was preparing all the materials, I decided to take pictures because someone, somewhere may be looking for the exact thing I am doing! I decided to make an easy to follow tutorial (at least I hope it's easy to follow!) And PLEASE disregard my ugly fingernails, I hate looking at them, but there was no way to avoid showing them in my pictures!

So, here's what you need:
A basket
2/3 to 1 yard of fabric depending on basket size (Mine is a large basket so I got 1 yard of fabric)
Measuring tape
Safety pin
Sewing machine
Gauge (optional)
Ribbon (optional)
Embroidery thread (optional)

Don't be afraid of sewing this even if you have never sewed anything in your life! If you have a sewing machine or have access to one, this project will be EASY. Basically, you are only sewing straight lines. There is a circle to sew, but don't be afraid of it!

The first thing you need to do is to make a pattern. This isn't THAT hard I promise! It does involve some math, though but I used a calculator and you should, too :)
To make the pattern, you are going to take measurements of your basket.
Here is my basket:

It is the largest size of this style sold at Hobby Lobby. They retail at $14.99 but are on sale in stores at 40% off RIGHT NOW! (I have both a purple basket and a green basket that you will see in this tutorial. They are both the same size so don't be thrown off by seeing two different colors!)

OK first measurement you need to take is the diameter of the inside bottom circle of the basket, like this.

Mine is 10 inches.

Next measurement is the diameter of the wider circle of the basket. Like this:

Mine is 13.5 inches.

A couple more measurements. Measure the inside height of the basket, like so:

Mine is 6 inches.

Last measurement is the height around the basket. Start from the inside and go all the way around. Like this:

Mine is 12 inches, which is double the height but all baskets aren't like this. Some have a wider rim, whereas my basket doesn't have a rim at all really. So it's important to take this measurement, don't assume it's double the inside height!!

OK, now you have your measurements. Write them down.
Inside diameter: 10 in
Outside diameter: 13.5 in
Inside height: 6 in
All around: 12 in

To make the pattern we are going to make a sort of trapezoid shape/house shape.
To find the top and bottom lengths of the trapezoid we have to do and equation. It involves pi. Yep, we are using math IN REAL LIFE :) don't be scared just find a calculator!
OK first up, top of the trapezoid:
Here is our equation: diameter TIMES π (pi) DIVIDED by 2
We're going to use our INSIDE diameter (smaller number) for the top
My number is 10 so my equation is:
You can use 3.14 for pi but if you have a calculator with a pi key, use it (I used the calculator on my iPhone)
So after I multiplied my diameter by π (pi) and divided by 2 I get 18.5 (I rounded UP on all calculations!)
So the top length of my trapezoid is 18.5 inches. Here's a visual for all of you who may not be able to picture this:

OK so now to find the longer length of the trapezoid, we do the same thing, only we use the outside diameter. Mine was 13.5 inches.
So: 13.5• π/2
I get 21 inches for my longer side.
Here is the visual:

OK, that's all the HARD math! The other sides are just measurements we have already taken. The slanted sides of the trapezoid are going to be the measurement of the inside height of your basket. Mine was 6 inches. My slanted sides will be 6 inches. Here's the visual:

If you haven't already noticed, the trapezoid isn't EXACTLY a trapezoid. It's more like a house shape. This is to prevent too much fabric at the sides of the basket where our ties will be. The last measurement is a little hard to explain but here it goes. The TOTAL of the slanted and straight side needs to be the all around height. Mine was 12 inches. This makes it easy to understand. My straight side will be 6 inches because my slanted side was 6 inches. Confused? Me too. SO say my all around height wasn't something so easy. Say it was 14 inches instead of 12. All I do is SUBTRACT the inside height from the all around height. So it would be 14-6, giving me 8 inches. My straight side would be 8 inches.

So, to find your straight sides:
All around height MINUS inside height
Mine is 12-6
Here's the visual:

OK, so that's our pattern piece! Here's what you should have:

It looks like this on fabric:

You need TWO of these, so cut two when you cut. I didn't make a paper pattern, but you can. If you don't feel comfortable cutting right into your fabric, then by all means make a paper pattern piece!

OK, the last piece of this liner is going to be easy to make. Remember your INSIDE diameter? Mine was 10 (it is the smaller diameter). Find something in your house, a bowl, a pot, etc. that has that diameter! I had a mixing bowl with a 10 inch diameter. Trace around your household object and cut ONE circle out.

That's it!! You should now have 2 trapezoid/house shape pieces and one circle.

First thing is to pin the trapezoid pieces together at the slanted sides RIGHT sides of fabric together. (I am using seersucker so I don't have a "wrong" side starting out, but all printed cotton fabrics are going to have a right/wrong side)

Sew the slanted sides.

Now, your straight sides have raw edges. Turn these under about 1/4 inch and pin them. Like this:

Sew that down.

Now, here's a bit of a tricky part. Pin your circle piece around the smaller bottom side. Here's a picture:

Sew all around the circle being careful not to catch any of the other fabric as you are turning the circle around. Take your time doing this step.

Now, we have the long raw edges left. This is where we are going to make a casing for our ties. This is easy. Put the liner in the basket and decide how much of a hem you want. I measured and decided on 1 inch.

I used my sewing gauge (you can use your measuring tape) to turn the fabric under 1 inch all along the raw edge. Make sure you turn it under on the wrong side of your fabric!
Sew that down.

Now, the last step! You can do this really easily by using ribbon. If you want ribbon ties, pick a 1 inch ribbon and cut 2 pieces at least 37 inches long. Feed the pieces through your casings and you are done!
I didn't want ribbon ties, I wanted them to be fabric so I made my own ties.
I cut two pieces of fabric 37 inches long by 4 inches wide.

I then folded each piece so that the two sides were touching in the middle.

Then folded that over. This prevents any raw edges from showing. Pin this.

Sew it down.
Repeat with the other tie. Fold over your two ends (on each tie) so that no raw edges are showing. Pin it and sew it down.

The easiest way to feed these through the casing is to attach a safety pin to the end of the ties. Force it through the casing and use the safety pin to pull the tie all the way through the casing.
Put your liner in your basket, tie the ties and voila! A custom Easter basket liner!!

Now, there is an extra step you can take. If you have an embroidery machine or you want to hand-embroider or you know someone who can embroider for you, you can add a name. I have a brother SE-350 sewing/embroidery machine combo so I put names on both of my liners. It is best to take the tie out while you embroider and put it back in afterwards.

Here are my finished baskets!

A Pottery Barn liner costs $12 PLUS $7 for embroidery. The basket is $24. So $43 for the whole package. I did 2 so I would have spent $86!!!!

I got my basket on sale at Hobby Lobby for $9 and a yard of fabric on sale for $5. I had all the thread already, so I spent $14 TOTAL for each basket.


If you like this, share it with your friends on Facebook, twitter, pinterest. If you make one, let me know! If you have comments or questions, let me know! I'll do my best to answer!

Happy sewing!


  1. LOVE this tutorial! I made one for my baby boy and LOVE it! How would I make one for an oval basket? My sister wants one now. :)Thanks so much!

    1. Thanks for the comment!!
      I hope you are a math person because the math is a little more complicated on the oval!!
      On the round basket we found the circumference of the circle (pi times the diameter) and then divided it by 2 to get the length of the top and bottom of the trapezoid. You would do everything EXACTLY the same but you need to use a different formula to find the circumference of the oval (ellipse in math terms)The formula is really long so I would just use this calculator!!
      Measure the shortest diameter and the longest diameter of the inside of the basket and enter the numbers into the corresponding boxes on that calculator. It will give your the circumference of your oval...divide that by two and that's the top of your trapezoid.
      Repeat the process for the outside oval and that is the bottom number on your trapezoid. Find the rest of the sides exactly the same way you do with a round basket.
      To get the piece that goes inside, instead of tracing an object, just trace the bottom of the basket. Hope all that makes sense!
      I'm glad you made one!

  2. Just curious about the first step and the answer for the top of the trapazoid. My basket also had a measurement of 10 inches and when I was working thru the problem my answer was 15.7079... but your answer was 18.5. Just curious if my math was off or what. Please clarify and let me know before I begin cutting my fabric.


    1. I didn't even realize what had happened so I dug out their measurement was actually 11 3/4 inches and I was working with another basket that was 10 in and wrote 10 in the tutorial! Your math is right and I will correct the tutorial! Thanks!

  3. Julia -- thanks for the tutorial. I'm a grandma from Iowa, and I'm heading to Germany in 2 weeks to spend time with our 2 grandkids (4 yrs old and 1 yr old). On the list of "things for Grandma to do" is make liners for two Pottery Barn Easter baskets. So I googled that topic, and here I am at your blog. Daughter-in-law could have saved money buying a couple baskets from Hobby Lobby, but she doesn't have access to those stores where they're living in Germany. (Son is a dentist with the US Army). I'm looking forward to the trip, and your advice and steps are giving me confidence that I'll do just fine, trying this on my own. Cute baskets,, and thanks for the help!

  4. Hi~
    Love this tutorial! If I wanted to do elastic in the casing instead of ribbon or fabric, do you know how much elastic I would need?

    Thank you so much : )

  5. Thanks for the wonderful comment! Also, I've never used elastic in anything but clothing, but the good rule for that is measure the elastic around where you want it to hit and then minus 2 inches...may be a little less for the basket liner, just play with it a little before you cut the elastic.

  6. Thank you for this tutorial. I made my liner tonight and it came out almost perfect. I did the measurements exactly as you posted for my size basket. The only problem is that my basket has a large lip (?) around the top circle. This made the slanted edges a little too small and the fall over the edge a bit too short to embroider a name. I will probably start over since I have a ton of material left. Still happy I know how to do this. Thanks!

    1. Just make sure when you measure all the way around the inside and outside that you stretch your measuring tape out on that rim to include the extra inches you need. Mine doesn't have a rim so my inside height and outside heights are the same, so my all around equaled 12 in (6 inside, 6 outside) and give yourself some extra to allow for that rim! Glad to know it worked for you! I just made another one for a friend, they get easier the more you make!

  7. Love these! I feel the same way about the PBK baskets and since I have four children... Thank you for posting this! I am just learning to sew so hopefully by next year I could make these :) Have a blessed Easter!

  8. Do the measurements account for seam allowances?

  9. Thank you for this post! I'd been agonizing over spending a ridiculous amount of money for PB Kids Liners when I stumbled upon your blog. I made my own using your tutorial and it cost me less than $10! My sewing machine doesn't embroider, so I purchased iron on embroidered letters which worked perfectly. I hope you don't mind, but I put up a link to this post on my blog Thanks again!