One of the most recognizable American products is for sure Longaberger baskets. These baskets besides exceptional beauty represent a rich piece of American tradition and history. What makes these baskets so popular among collectors is their exquisite craftsmanship and high quality.
Longaberger baskets are handcrafted and most people consider them the Holy Grail in the basket-making industry. The First Longaberger basket was produced in 1919. Nowadays, passionate collectors are willing to pay high prices for the rarest and well-preserved specimens.
However, there are thousands of these baskets available for purchase online. What you need to know is that there are signature features in a design that will significantly enhance the selling price.
Are you ready to become an expert in Longaberger baskets value? If the answer is yes, read on!
The Rise Of Longaberger Baskets
In the early 1900s, when you go grocery shopping you carried a basket just like we carry plastic and paper bags nowadays. So naturally demand for them was high which allowed basket makers to grow their businesses. Soon enough baskets were designed in different sizes and shapes, so you could purchase the one that suits your needs the most.
As I already mentioned one of the most popular basket producers at that time was the Longaberger family. Their product became the synonym for high quality. When you said basket you meant Longaberger.
Since there are a lot of different Longaberger baskets available for purchase on the market the price range wary greatly. Today you can find a Longaberger basket with a $20 up to a few thousand of dollars price tag.
Read on to learn what features make your Longaberger basket extremely valuable.
Rare features to look for in a Longaberger basket
There are some Longaberger baskets that are much more valuable collectible items than regular basket models. However, many people fail to realize which ones are those and they end up selling them under the price without knowing it. To avoid making those mistakes make sure you carefully read the following.
Some of the rarest and best Longaberger baskets will carry these specific features:
- Collectors’ Club Baskets – Baskets from this line are very popular and sought-after collectors. They can reach pretty high price tags. Make sure your Collectors’ Club basket comes with a Certificate of Authenticity as proof that it is real. J.W. Miniatures/Minis baskets are also a part of this collection!
- Singed by Dave Longaberger – If your Longaberger basket is signed by Dave Longaberger, the founder of the Longaberger Basket Company, the price tag will drastically increase!
- Signed by Grandma Bonnie – Among the highest aid baskets are those that are personally signed by Grandma Bonnie, Dave’s mom. These baskets are very rare!
- Signed by Daves’s daughters – Tami and Rachel Longaberger. Both are still on the company board.
- Signed by Dave’s siblings – Some baskets are as well scribed with Dave’s siblings’ names and birth order. These will fetch you a handsome amount of money. Pay attention to the following order – Genevieve #1, Wendy #2, Jerry #3, Larry #4, Richard #6, Maryann #7, Judy #8, Ginny #9, Gary #10, Carmen #11, and Jeff #12.
How To Determine The Real Value Of Longaberger Basket?
First, let’s learn how to determine if the basket is a real Longaberger basket. To make sure your basket is the original Longaberger basket it must have the following:
- The Longaberger logo must be printed on paper or a stamp and located on the bottom of the basket.
- Every Longaberger basket must have two horizontal green bands near the top of the basket. They are also known as “Longaberger Bows” and they are a trademark feature.
- Look for the woven-in tag with the name and number of the model. It is located on one of the handles.
Like with most collectibles there are some factors that you need to consider when you want to determine the real monetary value of your Longaberger basket. Those factors include:
- How rare the basket is – Like with all collectible items the rarer the item is, the more it will be worth. In case you are unsure of how rare your basket is you should request help from an established collector. In most cases, collectors will be able to determine the model. However, if they failed to do it you can also request help from some Longaberger family members directly.
- Origin – When we talk about rare and valuable collectible items in general, some common practice is to trace down the succession of ownership. In some cases, items became valuable because they were preowned by some famous or historically important person. When we talk about Longaberger baskets make sure to check if it was handmade by one of the most prominent members of the Longaberger family. If you are lucky enough and it is, your basket will surely have a high price tag.
- Items condition – The highest-priced collectible items are naturally always in mint condition. This as well goes for fragile items such as baskets. Unfortunately, baskets will get damaged over time since the material will start degrading due to weather conditions. Make sure you store your basket in the best possible conditions. The more damages and imperfections there are, the lower the price tag will be.
There are some very rare Longaberger baskets that easily get sold for several hundred or even thousands of dollars. When you come across them in mint condition, you can consider yourself very lucky since you just found a golden grail among the baskets.
If you follow our guidelines and check your basket for signatures you can cash in on your Longaberger basket much more than you expect.
Most Valuable Longaberger Baskets Available On The Market
Over the past several years, the demand for vintage Longaberger baskets increased drastically so the prices grew as well. However, if you are determined to buy a vintage Longaberger basket you won’t think twice about the price.
Here is the list of the most valuable Longaberger baskets and collections that were sold over the past two years. Currently, there are a lot of items listed on eBay and Etsy for much lower prices, but these ones are rare or in mint condition.
- 1996 Longaberger Blue Large sold for $20,000
- Longaberger Complete JW Original Collection 1985-1994 Excellent Condition sold for $3,900
- Collection of 50 + Longaberger Baskets & Accessories sold for $2,375
- Longaberger Baskets, Wrought Iron, Accessories & More, 60 pieces sold for $2,340
- Vintage Longaberger Collector Baskets Signed by Dave/Bonnie sold for $2,000
- Original JW Longaberger Shopping Cart Authenticated Super Rare sold for $1,750
- 1998-2001 LOT of VINTAGE LONGABERGER Baskets with Assorted Liners/Protectors sold for $1,625
- Authenticated J.W. Longaberger Original Market Basket made by Dave’s Father currently selling for $1,500
- Set of Vintage Longaberger baskets from the 2+000s currently selling for $1,500
- W. Longaberger Wood Cabinet w/ 13 Miniature Baskets $1,465
- LONGABERGER RARE MASTER STUDIO SPIRAL BASKET! – FIRST IN SERIES sold for $1,399
Where Can You Buy Vintage Longaberger Baskets?
This mainly depends on if you want to buy a vintage Longaberger basket or a newly designed model. However, no matter which one is your choice there are always plenty of options where you can look for them.
Online selling platforms such as Ruby Lane, Etsy, eBay, 1stDIBS, LiveAuctioneers, or even Amazon are great options when looking for vintage and rare Longaberger baskets. Also, you should check local flea markets, and antique and thrift shops. A lot of people decide to get rid of their baskets without knowing their real value so attending garage sales is always a good option as well.
If you got your eye on some new design Longabereg basket models you can always visit their official website and make a purchase.
When did Longaberger start producing baskets?
The Longaberger Company was founded in Ohio, in 1919 and this is when they started with basket weaving. The company was sold to TGC Companies in 2018 but they are still one of the most popular basket makers in this industry.
How can I use Longaberger baskets?
Longaberger baskets have a wide range of purposes. You can use them in your storage compartment, or in a laundry room. Some are great for carrying groceries, or for holding blankets and knitting tools. A lot of people use them as a decorative planters or to store kids’ toys in them.
Did Lonagbereger make dishes and pottery?
Yes besides maple wood handcrafted baskets they produce a wide range of other home decorations and utilities. This company as well crafts pottery and dishes. Their dishes and pottery are lead-free and oven-, microwave-, and dishwasher-safe.
Is It Smart To Invest In Vintage Baskets?
Most Longaberger baskets, as well as other vintage baskets, are made of maple wood and we all know how wood can be fragile from time to time. First of all, they can be easily damaged if you overstuff them, dented if you drop them, and like all wooden items, they don’t like water and humidity.
Make sure you take care of your wooden baskets properly or you risk damage like mold which will ruin your basket completely. However, before you invest your money in a Longaberger basket you need to accept the fact that they won’t last forever. This does not mean they aren’t worthy of investment, they are you just need to be aware of the risk, especially if you are buying a preowned and used basket.
Make sure that after reading this article you check your grandmas place and see if there is some valuable Longaberger basket sitting in the corner and waiting to shine once again.
Also Read: Antique Tricycles: Value, Identification, Buying & Selling Guide (Rare One Sold For $21,060)