Rustic Fall Bushel Basket


Outdoor fall displays are fun to make. They put me in the mindset of autumn and anticipate the coming holidays. Last year I made a wooden pumpkin yard display out of pallet wood, a project you can make with just a jigsaw in an hour.  This year I thought it would be fun to attempt to make a rustic fall bushel basket out of pallet wood. The kind of bushel for holding apples, though usually used as a decorative display.

Rustic fall bushel basket

This is one of those projects that is simple, but fought with me every step of the way. Some projects are just like that. The challenges facing me were bending the wood for the hoops that hold the slats in place, and coming up with a method to attach them.

I’ve made plenty of bent wood, laminated projects, so cutting the thin strips was easy. The only trick is cutting them the right thickness. If they are too thick, they will break when you try to bend them, if they are too thin, they won’t have much strength. This varies depending on the species of wood you are using. Oak bends very nicely, but is somewhat expensive. I often use pine 2x4s which work fine. I used a redwood board for this project.


It’s a good idea to cut a lot of extra strips because some will inevitably break. To make the hoops, I glued and clamped them into circles of three different diameters. I used masking tape to hold them together.



I cut a plywood circle for the base after making the hoops, which was really dumb. As I tried to force the hoop over the plywood, it broke.



I ended up doing what I should have done to begin with and just wrap a strip around the plywood and staple it into place.



The staples split the wood in one spot, so I added a second thin strip to cover up the first strip!



Once this was dry, I cut pallet wood to size and glued and tacked them onto the base.



Then I glued and tacked the upper two hoops into place.



I picked up a bunch of fall decorations and made a display at the top of our stairway. It actually turned out pretty cool and my wife loves it!

Bushel Basket



  1. Your wood looks like red pine. It just does not like to be bent. I had similar problems trying to laminate a beam. Oak or ash are better choices. Anything but pine.

  2. Love your videos and how you publish the mistakes and woodworking tragedy that we all try to pretend doesn’t exist. You show that even great talent has it’s mistakes and that it’s not about being perfect, but true craftsmanship is about turning your mistakes into a better positive.
    There is a new video for you! How to correct your mistakes by turning them into feature of the project. Inlay over incorrectly drilled holes, trim work over chip out, increased sizes of routed edges to correct burnout… you name it!! haha!


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