About 15 years ago, we started carrying a few African market baskets here and there. We were a health food store for 43 years but these beautiful baskets became so popular that we basically transformed our store into a basket store. Since our store was started as simply a place to sell peaches in the 1970’s, our name was already the Peach Basket. So, we came full circle to become the store that we are today, carrying both peaches and baskets.
These baskets are hand made out of elephant grass. The people that make them in Ghana even make their own dyes for the gorgeous colors you’ll find on them. No two baskets are the same, as they vary in color and pattern. When they arrive at our store, they have been crushed flat in order to reduce shipping costs. To make them round again, we have to get them wet in a tub of water briefly and use our hands to reshape them. Once they have the look we want, we hang them on the front porch of the store to dry. Now, instead of carrying a few baskets, we have about 500 at any given time. We consider them art in our store and display them in ways so that the customer can appreciate their beauty, rather than just throwing them onto shelves. Not only are they beautiful to use as decoration, but they are also practical. Many of our customers use them daily to shop with because they are sturdy and easy to carry. We have about thirty different shapes and sizes. There are trays made to hold things on tables, bike baskets, purses, sun hats, fans, fedoras, bell shaped baskets, very small hand baskets to very large baskets that are large enough to take to the beach with a lot of towels in them. We have very large gorgeous laundry baskets with lids. There are also Moses baskets to put a baby in. Many people use our baskets to give their cats a perfect place to sleep.
Every Basket Helps
African Market Baskets™ founder and CEO, Steve Karowe formed Every Basket Helps™, a non-profit organization created to help manage humanitarian projects in the villages of Ghana. African Market Baskets™ donates 10% of its profits to Every Basket Helps™.
Steve travels to Africa to meet with the weavers regularly and to oversee Every Basket Helps™ projects which include:
- Providing basic school supplies for the weavers’ children annually
- Organizing and funding health care for the weavers and their families annually
- Funding and building a community weaving center that serves two villages and over 400 weavers (2009)
Thanks to all of you who help support the weavers by buying baskets from African Market Baskets™.
We should add that the reason we don’t sell the baskets online is that they vary so much in color and pattern. Also the shipping would be a challenge. So come in and see for yourself! We will make a video shortly to give our customers a tour of our store that shows you these wonderful works of art.