Party Cooler Basket

It’s August…  August 7th to be exact. Summer has flown by, but we still have plenty of summer left to enjoy. One of my favorite things about this time of year is that we can dine alfresco – even in the heat of August it is still possible.  We just have to wait until early evening when the sun is not so hot. It is the perfect time to flaunt your entertaining style and enjoy good food with family and friends as you watch the sun go down.

How-to-make-a-basket-into-a-party cooler

Back in June I showed you how I set up an outdoor buffet when I entertain.  I had an idea for a party cooler made using a wicker basket that I bought at my local thrift store. I finally got around to making it.


My summer entertaining style is very casual. I make it all come together by being organized so that at a moment’s notice, I can grab my party basket and get things set up in no time. The food served could be as simple as pizza delivery to more elegant fare of steaks and grilled lobster.  It doesn’t matter which – since no matter what is being served – the mood is casual – it is all about family, friends, and good conversation.


If you hesitate to entertain because you feel like your house is not clean – no need to fret, I have the answer… evening alfresco parties mean you can use candles to light the interior of your house. Most guests will go to your kitchen and powder room.  I use candles to light the way. They make your home look dreamy, plus dust and dirt never show up in candlelight.  :-)

This style of cooler is best used for late afternoon or evening  parties when the temps go down since it is an open style way to keep drinks cold.   I like the open look of bottles on ice. It makes the drinks very accessible and your bar area very stylish.

How to Make a Party Cooler Basket

I think everything looks better with a label, so I made an “Ice Cold Drinks” label for the basket on my computer and then used a self-laminating sheet to protect it. I used brass fasteners to attach it to the basket.  You can download the free printable below.

1.  Find a large basket – any will work.


2. Find one or more plastic storage containers that will fit snugly inside. I found mine at Walmart.


3. Fill each container halfway with ice. Add drinks and then add more ice on top.

How to Make a Label for a Party Cooler Basket


1. To make the label, print out .pdf below using your computer and printer.


2. Protect it with self-sealing laminating sheets.


3. Use a paper cutter or scissors to cut excess lamination around label.  Punch a hole using a hole punch on either side.


5. Remove plastic container from basket to attach label.  Place a brass fastener through each hole on the label.  Figure out where the center of the basket is and place label over area. Push end of brass fasteners through the open part of the basket weave under each side of the label.  On the inside of the basket, spread the tips to secure.

Download here:  Ice Cold Drinks free printable .pdf 


Summer does not officially end until September 22nd. You still have plenty of time to ask friends and family over for an evening of fun and festivities dining alfesco.

Click here to see and download even more party cooler labels


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Brilliant and so cute!!
    Great job!

  2. What size basket and plastic containers did you use for the basket cooler?

  3. Linda Weeks says:

    Well I should hope you are enjoying a party or two! What better time to enjoy than this! Keep up the good work!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Linda – Thanks – We did have friends over the last two weekends…this weekend it is going to be quiet…just Ed and I which will be a nice change. I hope you have a great weekend.

  4. Patricia Wilson says:

    Diane, just found your blog tonight via Southern Hospitality and was totally, totally blown away from the “Get Go” after just reading your About Me description and checking out a few of your posts. Your “Can Do” very definitely comes across as does your “In My Style Sense” blog personality.

    Diane, your blog reminds me of drinking Champagne, Pepsi, Vernor’s Gingerale (made in Detroit, where I grew up…actuallly suburbs), or Club Soda…bubbles which tickle your nose and wake up your brain to it’s creativity.

    From tonight, I’m definitely one of your followers because your blog is unique amongst the few DIY blogs I follow.

    Patricia Wilson
    Columbia, CT

  5. I think this is so cute and party like. I love to use thrift store items to make things. It is a great way to repurpose things other people think are no good any more. And saves $$$$.

  6. I totally LOVE this post, Diane. So much so, I’ve pinned three fabulous new ideas to try – this wonderful cooler basket, your party basket (brilliant organisation!) and your tuna can lantern (genius!). Thank you

  7. Christina Rodriguez says:

    I love this idea! Can’t wait to use it

  8. Did I ever tell you that you were my favorite? No?, well you – are everyday of the week Diane! Thank you so much for all the wonderful ideas!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Valerie – you are so sweet for taking the time to write and tell me that. I truly appreciate it. XO

  9. Antionette Blake says:

    Yes, this would be perfect for the last holiday of the summer – Labor Day. I don’t remember the summer season going by so quickly…so until the first Autumn leaf falls, I will try to spend as much time outside as I can. Great share, thank you.

  10. Krista @ the happy housie says:

    What a fun party set up Diane – I love the display in the basket…such a good idea to use the plastic tubs! We are having a big family dinner here tonight and hope to be eating outside- I just might have to borrow some ideas from your setup!!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Krista – I hope you had a wonderful evening.I can just picture your perfect outdoor setting – your deck overlooking the water – family all around – perfection + FUN!

  11. Bluwatergal says:

    Perfect idea! And I stay with the alfresco summer vibe as long as possible. Super clever & love the label :-) Bwg ~~~

  12. Beautiful like always! This is such a clever idea and now I feel like I need to start looking for a basket right away!

  13. So cute. I can’t believe you found two plastic containers that fit in your basket perfectly! Thanks for the printable.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Susan – I thought it might be hard to find the containers to fit, so I took the basket to Walmart with me. The containers I bought were the first ones I pulled down from the shelves and they fit. :-) It was the moment that I knew the project was meant to be and I should post about it.

  14. Diane, you never fail to amaze me. You have the best ideas and truly (I know this phrase is overworked but it is the one that truly applies) think outside the box! This would be absolutely perfect for my daughter in law who loves to entertain and has a great deck.

  15. That is darling! I love the vibe of the wicker. Great idea, Diane!