It’s difficult to imagine Easter without those beautifully decorated Easter baskets full of spring colors and decadent treats. If you’re a parent, you already know how excited the kiddies get when they wake up Easter morning to find candy chicks, dyed eggs, and an Easter basket full of chocolate-y goodness. Easter baskets have been providing happiness to children of all ages for centuries, and we can’t forget about the iconic Easter Bunny, the real MVP, who drops off these baskets in the middle of the night!

As the years go by, we’ve become more and more accustomed to the tradition of getting candy-filled Easter baskets for our children. But have you ever wondered how a basket full of candy became an iconic part of this holiday? Stick with us and we’ll give you a quick run-down of how the Easter basket tradition came about. Then, we’ll share some DIY Easter basket ideas for the perfect personalized basket.

A Deeper Meaning of the Easter Basket

Spring has long symbolized the season of renewal and rebirth. It’s nature’s way of reminding us the harsh winter is over, and we can finally put away our puffy coats. The moment day and night are of equal length is recognized as the first day of Spring, otherwise known as the vernal equinox, or spring equinox. This day, and season, marks a significant time for not only us but for ancient farmers, who depended on their livestock and crops for a living. The spring equinox was their signal of renewal and crop survival. As a celebration of this season, farmers prayed to the fertility goddess, Eostre, in hope of a good harvest. According to the legends, Eostre carried around a basket of eggs (signifying new life and fertility), which then led to the sustained tradition of the “Easter basket.”

So where does the bunny come into play? This ritual has its origins in the German folklore of the Easter Hare. According to German legend, a white hare would leave Easter baskets filled with candies, brightly colored eggs and other goodies for kids to come and enjoy on Easter morning. When the German settlers moved to the U.S. they brought the tradition of the Easter Hare with them, which then transformed into what we know now as the Easter Bunny.

Don’t you love these fun history lessons with us? Plus, you can share your knowledge about these Easter traditions with your family to make spending this time with your children that much more special.

DIY Easter Basket Ideas for the Kiddies

When looking for a basket you can get as creative as you like. From the typical baskets made from wicker, wood or plastic, to the less-traditional like mason jars, tin buckets, or even spray painted flower pots—you can start just about anywhere. It doesn’t matter if you choose to go as small as a mason jar or as large as a laundry basket, because how you decorate it and what you put inside is the most important. (Speaking of laundry baskets, you’ll want to know about our Basket-Bonanza happening in-stores on April 1…but we’ll tell you about that in a minute). Stores like Michael’s, Pat Catans, or JoAnn Fabrics has a good selection of starter baskets, but don’t be afraid to keep the costs down and find something around the house!
When decorating, the most common areas to add some flair are the handle and/or outer rim of the basket! Consider using fabric, different colored tulle, ribbon, cloth, or glue & glitter to get as creative as possible.

Easter Basket Stuffers

Once your DIY Easter basket is fully decorated to your liking, the next part is finding the goodies to put inside. And since inside the basket is where the fun happens, this can put some added pressure on mom and dad. Here are a few basic ideas to get you started and make this the most enjoyable experience for both you and your little ones on Easter morning:

1. First off, start with a “filler” item, such as Easter grass or twine coating the bottom for a more classic look. The filler does a great job of adding color and character to your DIY Easter basket.

2. There are so many different items you can choose from to put in your child’s basket, but some of the most traditional Easter baskets include at least one candy from each of the below categories. And as chocolate experts, we pretty much have you covered on that end!

Besides the standard candy-filled Easter baskets, some non-edible ideas can be:

  • Coloring books
  • Crayons/Markers
  • Play-dough
  • Puzzles/Games
  • Lollipops
  • The Easter Story book

We understand that you want to make this holiday special for your kids, which is why we waited until now to tell you about our huge Basket-Bonanza coming up very soon! On the morning of April 1st to end-of-day April 2nd, bring in a basket of any size to receive 30% off everything that fits inside! Any size counts…remember when we mentioned that laundry basket earlier? Yes, we will hold true to that! Just come in to a Malley’s location near you, stuff your basket full of chocolates and treats, and you’ll receive 30% off everything that fits inside your basket!

Note: This offer is only valid to VIP Card Members. If you’re not a VIP Card Member, you can sign up at your nearest Malley’s location! You will not want to pass this deal up. With Easter around the corner, this will be your best way to save and make this Easter extra special for the kiddies!