A vintage 1950s-1960s era bamboo handled and lidded basket like this one is very hard to find today. It was not made in China. It is exemplary craftsmanship from the Philippines around 60-70 years ago. It was originally made to be an easy to carry small sewing basket for small items like buttons, thread, and needles.
I will share something with you about old bamboo baskets. I know my baskets. Ive been collecting and studying for over 40 years. My mother was a collector too. The secret to knowing a really old bamboo basket is in the size of the canes. In the 1920s and 1930s, all Asian bamboo baskets were incredible works of art made with very narrow canes only a few millimeters in size. The canes were hand split to size and it was very time consuming.
The older baskets were always stained dark brown, sometimes incorporating other colors too. Sometime in the 1950s, they stopped staining the bamboo completely. However, throughout the 1950s and 1960s, they still made small baskets with very narrow canes. After the 1960s, there are no Asian bamboo baskets that were made with very narrow canes. They had to produce more, faster, as the export demand was high when Nixon lifted the import ban in 1971. The practice of staining died out in the 1950s to reduce cost and labor.
This basket is a squatty bulbous shape. The basket is made of half inch wide natural bamboo canes woven with canes that are just a few millimeters wide. The handle is wrapped with we call sweet grass, which is actually made from the leaves of water lilies.
The basket has a wonderful honey gold patina and is in pristine clean like new condition. It is very much in like new condition with no broken or missing canes. I have not cleaned this basket in any way so if you stare into the cracks hard you will see some light dust from age. It has been stored away in my collection for about 30 years.
It measures 5 1/2" tall with the handle. The basket portion is about 6" wide x 3 1/4" tall.