How To Make A Gift Basket At Home? A Step-by-Step Guide To Creating Beautiful Gifts

Written by: Lara
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Six different gift baskets with food and drinks

Are you ready to unlock the secrets of creating a gift basket that will dazzle your loved ones on any occasion? Look no further! In this guide, we’ll show you exactly how to make a gift basket that will leave your recipients speechless and your gift-giving reputation soaring to new heights.

With our expert tips, you’ll learn how to choose the ideal gift basket that suits any occasion and recipient. We’ll also reveal the secrets to making your items stand tall and proud in the basket, ensuring a visually stunning presentation, and more useful tips you want to know before creating a gift basket.

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Gift basket unwrapped: The ultimate guide on how to create a gift basket with a photo of a wrapped gift basket

Step 1: Pick your basket

Let’s start with the base; the basket.

Now before you start stressing out, let me reassure you, there is no wrong basket.

Whether you opt for a cute woven basket, a practical plastic one, or a bag, all is good. You can even make a gift basket without a basket at all (I’ll explain how this works below). You can literally use anything to serve as a gift basket, as long as it’s big enough to fit in all the gifts you’re planning to buy.

If this is your first gift basket, or if you don’t know the recipient very well, my advice is to go for a simple basket. Such as the one below. It’s cute and practical and the color scheme matches any gift you’ll put in, making it the perfect gift basket for anyone.

An empty basket
Simple basket

Now, if you’re feeling a bit creative, you’re probably wondering what you can use instead of a gift basket.

And in that case, you can go for a unique basket with a specific theme.

So for example, if you’re going for a gift basket for a travel lover, you could use a backpack as a basket. That way your basket is a gift in itself too.

Here are some more creative items you can use instead of a basket

  • A whisking bowl for a baking-themed basket
  • A pot or pan for a food-themed basket
  • A make-up bag for a beauty-themed basket
  • A decorative bowl for a new home basket
  • A graduate hat for a graduation basket
  • A laundry basket for new parents

You get the idea. Simply think of a theme for your basket (trust me, themes are your best friend when it comes to making great gift baskets), and then find an item within that theme that can hold all the gifts.

Use a laundry basket for a newborn gift basket

How to make a gift basket without a basket?

I know it sounds a bit absurd; making a gift basket without a basket (I mean it’s literally in the word).

But the thing with gift baskets is that it’s not so much about having a basket, it’s about creating a personalized ensemble of gifts that match the recipient and that are meticulously arranged and beautifully packaged to create a visual impact.

So as long as you arrange and package the gifts in a beautiful way, you don’t need a basket.

You can simply use hard cardboard as a base, then arrange the gifts on top, wrap them in clear cellophane, add a cute ribbon, and voila; your gift basket without a basket is done.

Step 2: What do you put in a gift basket?

The inside of a gift basket consists of two things; the gifts and the fillers. And we’ll cover both in this guide. But let’s start with the gifts.

The gifts

The first thing you’re wondering is probably what type of gifts should I put in a gift basket.

And that’s a tricky question because there is no answer that fits all. You simply have to put yourself in your recipient’s shoes and think of things they’ll like and use, check out this guide if you need more help selecting the best gifts.

One tip that will make your life easier, is to pick a theme and then select gifts within this theme. Here are some ideas for themes to help you out

  • A color
  • A season
  • A hobby
  • A sport
  • An occasion or event
  • A specific shop
Three different baked goodies in a basket
Pick a theme, such as baked goodies

Next, you have to remember your budget. How much can you spend on this gift?

Personally, I’m more of a fan of buying one bigger gift that serves as the main gift (something the recipient will absolutely love) and then buying smaller gifts that go along with the big one. As opposed to buying a bunch of relatively cheap, but random items the recipient may or may not use.

And now it’s time to cover the big question.

How many gifts should be in a gift basket?

And again, there is no right or wrong answer. Whatever your budget allows and whatever fits and looks attractive in the basket.

Of course, one gift doesn’t really make a basket (I mean the whole idea is that it is a curated collection of various items in a cute basket). So if you asked me how many gifts should be in a gift basket?

I say you need a minimum of three gifts in order to make a gift basket. But more is better. It will make the basket look fuller and more aesthetic. But remember, practicality is absolutely more important than quantity.

So please, rather go for fewer practical or luxurious gifts instead of many small items.

A basket with a bottle of wine, dades and two glasses
Rather buy one great bottle of wine than many sh*tty ones


Besides gifts, you also need fillers to make your gift basket look good. Honestly, you can use anything that can elevate your gifts, for example

  • Crumbled newspapers
  • Crumbled cellophane
  • Paper shred
  • Fabric or cloth
  • Easter grass
  • Boxes
  • Styrofoam
  • Floral foam
  • Crumbled wrapping paper
  • Bubble wrap
  • Tissue paper
Blue crinkled paper
Crinkle paper is a good filler

Step 3: How do you structure a gift basket?

Once you’ve got everything to actually make your own gift basket. So how do you structure a gift basket?

Let’s start at the bottom. Because what do you put on the bottom of your gift basket?

This is where your filler comes in. You start with some filling at the bottom of your gift basket to enhance your gifts and make them stand tall. If it’s a really deep basket, start filling it up with a box or cloth and then put the fillers on top of the box, so you don’t have the fill the entire basket with filling paper.

Then arrange the big items at the back, and slowly move forward with the smaller items. Play around a little to find an assembly you like. Mix and match colors, shapes, and sizes, until you’re happy with the result.

Then there are three common questions when it comes to gift baskets that we will cover now.

  1. How to make items stand up tall?
  2. How do you secure gifts in a gift basket?
  3. How do you make your basket look fuller?
A basket with bath goodies and Christmas decorations
Fill the bottom with cloth or a box

How do you secure gifts in a gift basket and make them stand up tall

The first two questions really go together.

By securing gifts in a gift basket, you typically also make them stand tall.

It depends on the basket and the filler you use, but the best way to secure them is to stick the gifts both to the basket and to each other. This is another reason why more gifts are better because you can secure them together which makes it more stable.

You could either use tape or glue (if it doesn’t damage the gifts).

Or use a type of foam at the bottom and stick your gifts into it. For example by attaching a bamboo skewer (or any type of stick you have available) to your gift, and then pinning it in the foam to make it stand tall and secure the gift.

Another method is by attaching a tall gift (such as a bottle) to the handle of your basket with a ribbon. That way it won’t tip over (and break).

You can use styrofoam to secure gifts

How to make your basket look fuller?

Making your basket look fuller has everything to do with fillers. If you elevate your gifts, use any type of filler between the gifts, and assemble them aesthetically, your gift basket will instantly look fuller.

Now, if you bought a basket that’s actually too large for the number of gifts you have, this might be a challenge.

Fillers won’t do the job in that case, so you could either go for a smaller basket or add more gifts.

And don’t worry, that doesn’t necessarily mean you need to buy more gifts. Oftentimes you can unpack one gift into multiple smaller gifts and spread those around the basket.

For example, if you bought a beauty gift set with 4 products, you can unpack them, and place the four items separately around the basket to make it look fuller. If you can do this with multiple gifts, you suddenly have 10 items instead of 3, which will make a big difference.  

Place each beauty item separately

Step 4: How to make a gift basket look good?

Presentation is the whole point of gift baskets. I mean if you didn’t care about the presentation, you could have just given five separately wrapped gifts for the recipient to unwrap.

It’s the visual impact of meticulously arranged and beautifully packaged that adds an extra touch of charm to gift baskets. So to help you make attractive gift baskets, here are a few more tips.

Go for a gift theme

It will make it easier to find gifts, they will automatically match, and the unique basket will truly make it stand out.

Go for a color scheme

If your theme is still too broad, you can also pick a color scheme so that the gifts all look cute together, and you don’t even have to worry about aesthetics anymore.

Woman holding a basket with food and rustic colors
Rustic color schemes always work well

Pick the right basket

Your basket is basically the eyecatcher of the gift, so if you pick a cute one, your gift basket will instantly look fabulous.

Use the right filler and elevate your gifts

I know, I said there is no right or wrong filler, and I still stand by it. But that having said, picking a colorful filler, or one that matches the occasion can make all the difference in creating an attractive gift basket.  

Wrap it up

Lastly, give your gift basket the finishing touch by wrapping it up in clear cellophane and with a cute ribbon or bow. It’s that final touch that truly makes gift baskets the perfect gift for any occasion.

A gift baskets that's wrapped
Wrap it in cellophane and add a ribbon for the finishing touch

Bonus: 5 Homemade ideas

I hope that this step-by-step guide on how to make a gift basket really helped you to try it at home. But if you are in need of a bit more inspiration, let me share some of my favorite homemade ideas, including the fillers and baskets, so all you need to do is buy the items and assemble them at home.

And if you want more inspiration, check out these 60+ travel gift basket ideas.

#1 Beauty basket

If you want to know how to make a gift basket for a beauty queen, this is for you. Simply use a make-up bag or pouch as a basket and fill it up with make-up, face creams, and other beauty-related items.

A bath basket with toiletery stuff
Exampe of beauty basket

Italian food basket

Assembling a food basket can be quite a challenge if you don’t pick a theme. There are simply too many options, so by picking a specific theme, such as a country, a type of food, or even a color, you make shopping for your gift basket items a whole lot easier.

For the Italian basket, you can just go for any items that are Italian and you’ve put together a great basket!

A gift basket with food
Example of an Italian basket

Coffee gift basket

This is another great gourmet basket with a theme, by limiting yourself to coffee-related items, you will find gifts that go together perfectly, and they even have the same color scheme which makes it look pretty when assembled.

A basket with coffee
Example of coffee basket

Christmas basket

Christmas gift baskets are super popular, but instead of buying a premade one, you can easily create your own. All you need are baskets, fillings, and items in a Christmas theme and you’re all set.

A Christmas basket with food and Christmas ornament
Example of a Christmas basket


Creating a gift basket for new homeowners is super easy too. Simply focus on practical items for new homes and your set. It helps if you know the recipient’s taste. But if you don’t, it’s probably wiser to stick to basic items such as food and storage boxes that don’t have to be displayed at a prominent place in their home.

A basket with cellophane and a card
Example of a housewarming basket

Save this DIY gift basket guide

Do you want remember how to make your own gift basket? Then make sure you save this post on Pinterest!

Everything you need to know about how to make your own gift basket with a photo of a gift basket with Christmas decoration

Final notes on how to make a gift basket at home

Creating the perfect gift basket is an art form that combines thoughtfulness, creativity, and a touch of whimsy. By following our expert tips, you can transform a simple collection of items into a showstopping gift that will make your loved ones feel truly special. Whether it’s a birthday, anniversary, or just a heartfelt gesture, a well-crafted gift basket is sure to bring joy and leave a lasting impression.


Hi, I’m Lara, a 30-year-old travel-lover (but who’s not these days?). I love reading, puzzling, world-heritage sites, researching, and making lists, which comes in quite handy when you’re making lists of travel gift ideas!