Nantucket Lightship Baskets
We are super psyched (yes we said that) about the fact that Nantucket style woven bags, which are a symbol of this very special place, are trending this spring and summer season. These woven style bucket bags are traditionally called Nantucket Lightship Baskets and were made with rattan or wood (Oak, Pine and Ash usually). Originally, they were multipurpose shopping baskets to carry fruits and vegetables from the market. Crewmen on ships would also pass the time on their long journeys by weaving them for loved ones or to sell when they got home. Because they were made by sailors on whaling ships, they all had ivory on the top of the baskets that were either carved or painted on - that ‘scrimshaw’ is one of the distinguishing characteristics of an authentic Nantucket Lightship Basket. The bags came in a kidney shape or an oval shape and there was no top. You can no longer make a basket with authentic ivory as it is outlawed. By the 1900s people began using them more as purses and today that tradition remains. True Nantucket Lightship baskets currently start at about $500 and can cost up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. It's a real art form to make one properly and they can vary in detail and intricacy. Some have linings and leather straps, covers, or even ivory artwork or clasps. Luckily, you can now get the look for less and there are plenty of options out there. We have found some stylish options that range in price and design! Not all of them are exactly like the originals but we find all of them remind us a bit of our second home!