Burden baskets come from various Native American culture. They were used for gathering crops and once a woman returned home she would hang her basket on the front door. Native American’s consider their home a sacred space and the basket was a symbol that visitors were to leave all worries, anger and other negative emotions in the basket before entering in order to protect the space. The saying “leave your burdens at the door” originated from these baskets.
If you enjoy this check out our Butterfly Dream Catcher and Our Inspirational Dream Catcher Vision Board.
Burden Basket Supplies
- Small roundish basket to fit on an 8×10 plaque (4″ or 5″ high) You can find these easily at thrift stores!
- 8×10 wood plaque
- Sharpie Paint Pens OPTIONAL I used them for the smaller triangles to make nice lines.)
- Mod Podge
- Sawtooth Picture Hangers OPTIONAL
- Embroidery Floss (OPTIONAL if desired to wrap feathers)
- Hot Glue
- Printable poem below
You can get the poem in various forms included in our free download below.
Gather your supplies. We cut the handles of the basket we found. It was 4.5″ tall afterwards.
Our 8×10 plaque was purchased at Hobby Lobby. Even at regular price they are inexpensive. Michael’s and some Walmart’s carry them also.
You can paint your plaque however you like. We went with a tribal geometric design and marked off the plaque where we would paint.
Measure each side area and paint the colors of your choice.
Using paint with a little added water, paint triangles onto the basket.
Cut out the poem that you choose.
Mod Podge the poem on and then over the entire plaque.
A paint pen can help get straighter edges depending on the surface of your basket.
Use a sufficient amount of hot glue to affix the basket to the plaque below the poem.
Our first choice would have been longer feathers with darker tips but this is all we could find. We used some very watered down paint to paint the tips of them. They turned out fine!
We held them together with a tiny dab of hot glue, then wrapped them with embroidery thread.
We keep these sawtooth hangers to use for plaques. All you do is hammer them in!
Hang your plaque on your front door or beside it where everyone can see before they enter in.
Love this as someone with Native American ancestry. Thank you
Wow this is absolute trash. Making up and knock off, white women version of a burden basket is so typical. Get your own culture and stop appropriating off ours. And it’s not even a decent insult, this looks like a dollar store “crafty” amateur was doing their worst…
Please stop appropriating indigenous culture. You have no idea what those symbols mean. If you like the idea of it fine. Steal the idea. Put a basket and a note out, but why appropriate native culture and symbols? Why feathers? Why arrows? Why tribal in the title? Stop. Just stop. This goes towards your dream cather posts too. You have the power to change if you recognize that this is wrong.
This is really great , thank you , I’d really like clarification on how you actually use it , do you write down the burdens and place in the basket ?
Hi Caroline! This particular basket is metaphorical in nature. It’s the idea that you need to leave your negative thoughts outside. Ü
You wouldn’t because this isn’t your culture.
Wow! thank you so very much,
In our tradition it is a reminder that the home is a peaceful place and there is no room for your troubles and worry. They have no place Nd do not belong. I heard of a father that would visit a particular tree in his yard and ask it to keep troubles and worries until he left for work the next day so they did not affect his family life. The basket is the same theme and I love it. You symbolically leave your problems at the door. Your are free to take them when you go or leave them in the basket if you don’t need them anymore.
Oh… I LOVE the story of the tree. I’ve always had a VERY strong connection to trees and that is just beautiful!
What an interesting idea! As an Australian it’s not something I have ever come across but it is such a beautiful, symbolic gesture to make which I am sure goes a long way to creating a peaceful home for you and your guests to enjoy. Thanks for sharing it on the Homesteader Hop 🙂
Thank you Kristee!
Very cool! Thanks for the printable1