And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees…I had that conviction that life was beginning over again…”
Friends, it’s time to mix yourself a Grasshopper and kick off your heels. April 23rd is National Picnic Day, the perfect time to take your fête outside and celebrate the launch of the alfresco dining season. According to Victoria Hentrich of Creative Consultants, one of Austin’s top event-planning firms, “This spring and summer will be all about the art of the picnic, whether you’re at the seashore, on a ranch, or on a rooftop in the city.” Defining elements, Hentrich, says, are a fabulous blanket, delicious food, a beautiful atmosphere, monogrammed napkins, and, of course, the chicest picnic basket you can tote. Here, ten picnic-loving members of The Salonniere team share their favorites.
Carla McDonald, Editor in Chief: I’m crazy about this rolling picnic basket for six and drink table from Mark & Graham—it makes picnicking with a group a breeze. Made of traditional English willow and featuring leather and brass accents, it comes with a collection of elegant picnic essentials, including a little drinks table. This is one that Jane Austen would love.
Brie Dyas, Lifestyle Writer: I love this classic basket from Scully & Scully. The styling is fabulous, but the main draw is that it comes with everything one needs for an outing—and even better, everything has its own little compartment to keep things organized.
Amanda McCorquodale, Lifestyle Writer: I love this eco-friendly basket from Bambeco that includes bamboo dinnerware, wine glasses made from recycled glass, and organic cotton napkins. It offers everything you need for an elegant and environmentally friendly picnic.
Sarah Tracey, Wine and Spirits Writer: This insulated backpack from Mark & Graham is perfect for picnics. It’s super easy to carry, and the adjustable, padded shoulder straps make it comfortable, too. Most importantly, it comes with wine glasses and an insulated sleeve to ensure that your rosé or Sauv Blanc stays perfectly chilled.
Cindy Young Vanhoutte, Associate Editor: I love this timeless basket, which has been made in America since 1854 and can be purchased at Crate and Barrel. Handcrafted of Appalachian white ash, the same hardwood used in baseball bats, it’s super sturdy and can hold up to 60 pounds of picnic items, which is important to me because I pack real meals! I also love that the handles swing down so you can use the lid as a little table.
Strawberry Saroyan, Lifestyle Writer: I love a picnic that features grilled food, so this handy basket from Picnic-Basket.com is my outdoor-dining pick. It’s casual and earthy and comes with basic barbecue tools.
Betsy Morgan, Editor at Large: Our picnics usually involve a boat, so wicker is not practical. I love this canvas option from eBags because it’s lightweight, allows me to stay super organized (everything has its place!), and has space for two bottles.
Paige Axel Herman, Beauty Writer: I love this vintage picnic trunk that I found on 1stDibs. Not only does it come with salt and pepper shakers, but it makes it easy to pretend that you’re sipping mint juleps (Prohibition be damned!) with Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan in West Egg.
Amy Preiser, Home and Design Writer: My go-to tote is this wine-and-cheese picnic basket from Terrain. I love it because it softens the traditional all-wicker hamper look with understated canvas and handbag-like details. It looks small but holds two bottles of wine—essential picnic fuel.
Jenna Gallagher, Lifestyle Writer: More a picnic box than a basket, this one-of-a-kind collection from Le Chant du Coq includes fine vintage linens, cutlery, and dishes sourced from flea markets in France. Together they form a perfectly unique, sublimely elegant place setting à deux that makes dining al-fresco a work of art.
Picnic Baskets Story Welcome Mashup
Welcome Photo: Audrey Hepburn and Gary Cooper, Love in the Afternoon (1957)
Welcome Quote: The Great Gatsby (1925)