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Updated for 2023: Why Choose a Wicker Coffin? Read our free guide before spending any money

 

Natural burials provide a sustainable, environmentally friendly choice for people seeking an alternative to traditional funeral practices. Beautiful wicker coffins are produced using traditional weaving techniques and environmentally friendly materials. This creates high quality eco friendly coffins that have a lower impact on the environment.

In this article, you will find everything you need to know about wicker coffins, including their cost, how they are made, the benefits of wicker coffins, and ways they can be personalised. So let's dive in.

Handcrafted Wicker Funeral Coffins

Wicker coffins are the perfect choice for natural burials as they help protect our landscape, while allowing bodies to return to the earth without the use of toxic chemicals and containers. It is considered the ultimate in environmental recycling.


Wicker basket coffins are available in a range of colours and coffin designs. English willow coffins are woven by hand to the highest standard so they not only look beautiful they are strong and practical. They are an eco-friendly, natural alternative to traditional wooden or metal coffins and an ideal choice for natural burials, especially woodland burials as they are lighter to carry.

Crafted wicker coffins are made from natural sustainable materials, which means these coffins are the perfect choice for either burial or cremation. What’s more, biodegradable woven coffins are surprisingly affordable.

The history of wicker coffins

The word “coffin” comes from the Old French cofin and the Latin cophinus, which translates into “basket.” Historically, coffins have been made from a wide variety of materials- wooden boxes, iron, steel, wool, gold, plants and fibres.

Wicker coffins were likely among the first burial containers used by people, this is because wicker coffins are hand woven and simple to make. You don't need any nails or glue to create a basket coffin, this is another reason why wicker coffins are so environmentally friendly.

In more contemporary times, an English surgeon named Sir Frances Haden is credited for bringing wicker coffins back as a modern option in the late 19th century. They were widely used during the American Civil War and Victorian Era, as wicker was cheaper and lighter than other popular options at the time.

How much does a wicker coffin cost?

Wicker coffins vary in price and generally range between £400-£900. Much of this variability is determined by the materials used and the level of personalisation. The term “wicker” describes a weaving technique, and wicker items can be made using a variety of natural materials. Willow is the most popular material used in wicker coffins, but you may also find coffins made from:


When purchasing a wicker coffin, check to make sure it includes a few important elements, or if these are available at an additional cost:

  • A liner, typically made of cotton. If you are planning a natural burial your liner must be  made from natural materials.
  • A nameplate. You will need a biodegradable nameplate for a green burial.
  • An appropriate size (wicker coffins come in a wide range of lengths and widths).
  • Delivery to the funeral home or other destination. Some suppliers charge extra for Wicker coffin delivery

Here is our handy guide to wicker coffin price ranges:

  • In 2022, the cheapest wicker coffin you could buy was a Peel Willow Coffin which was listed on Amazon for £150. The description of the wicker coffin which was called an Eco wicker coffin included the statement, “This product is discounted significantly because it is a discontinued design and some parts of the coffin are grade B quality.”. Today, the Peel Eco coffin is still one of the cheapest wicker coffins on the internet. However, it now retails for £450. It is described as being made from mixed materials including mango trees that are no longer viable as fruit producing trees.
  • The cheapest wicker coffin currently listed on Amazon is a Bamboo coffin which retails at £425.

    Note: We have no affiliation with Peel, Amazon or other merchants on the platform. In comparison to our own.

  • The Coffin Company also sells deeply discounted wicker coffins that are currently on sale for as low as £309. However, this is for the small size wicker coffin up to 5'4.  There is an additional £95 flat delivery charge for UK orders of wicker coffins.
  • At thinkwillow.com, you will find the highest quality wicker coffins including pandanus, bamboo and willow wicker coffins at very affordable prices. Our most affordable hand woven wicker coffin is our Bamboo Traditional Wicker Coffin which starts at just £449.99. This 100% biodegradable wicker coffin includes free delivery, a biodegradable nameplate and natural cotton liner. These are all very important if you are opting for natural burial and green burial sites. There is no additional charge for these eco friendly extras which all come with our 100% satisfaction guarantee.
  • Thinkwillow.com’s Bamboo Wicker Coffins start at  £449.99, and our premium English Willow Coffin starts at £599.99. All of our wicker coffins are certified by the Coffin, Casket and Shroud Association for quality and strength and are suitable for both traditional burials and cremations and natural eco friendly burials and cremations.

How are environmentally friendly wicker coffins made?

Wicker caskets and coffins are caringly woven by skilled basket makers using traditional methods. English willow coffins are made from sustainable resources. Skilled coffin makers work with the cuttings of living willow trees, which continue to live after cuttings are taken and can be harvested for up to 60 years. Cuttings are boiled, dried, and stripped of their bark in preparation for weaving. They are then soaked in final preparation for weaving.  

The base of a wicker coffin is typically made first, with the sides being woven from bottom to top. Personalised touches are often added, including coloured bands and handles. Flowers, fabrics, or almost any other special request can be incorporated into the weaving process. Willow can also be hand dyed to produce colourful willow coffins and caskets.

One of the most popular colourful coffins is the rainbow coffin. These beautiful wicker coffins are becoming increasingly popular both for adult and child funerals.


Personalising your wicker coffin

Wicker is a great choice for those looking for a more personal, customised option. A growing number of people are opting to reflect the deceased’s identity in their choice of coffin and in how they personalise their wicker coffin.

Wicker coffins come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials. Traditional coffins that where only available in square angular form can now be purchased with smooth curved shapes a far cry from the limited stock Funeral Directors offered only a few years ago. 

Wicker Coffins: Traditional and Rounded Shape Willow Coffins

Wicker coffins are woven by hand and as a result it is possible to have different designs. Popular amongst buyers are the  Pod-shaped coffins. These beautiful wicker coffins have a sculpted, curved lid and tapered bottom.

Many people also like the unique curved end or rounded shape coffins such as the Willow Cromer coffin. For those who love the traditional shape there is still plenty of choice in colours and style. Discover our range of wicker coffins here.

There are also more options in the coffin colour, ranging from light to green to rainbow coloured wicker coffins. Want to learn more about colourful coffins? Read our ‘Buyer Guide’ here.



Wicker coffins often come with rings or other designated places to attach flowers, ribbons, or special personal items. Wicker lends itself easily to personalisation, as greenery, flowers, or other items can also be attached through the weave of the coffin. Many people select an arrangement of flowers or greenery for the top of the coffin. Garland and bows are often attached to the sides, encasing the coffin in a beautiful, environmentally-friendly arrangement.

Ashes caskets

An ashes casket made from willow or wicker is a popular choice for those seeking a natural and eco-friendly option. Willow and wicker can be weaved into intricate designs, creating a beautiful and timeless final resting place for your loved ones ashes. 

These caskets are biodegradable, allowing the ashes to return to the earth naturally. In addition to their environmental benefits, ashes caskets made from willow or wicker also provide a peaceful and serene aesthetic, giving families comfort and solace during the grieving process. 

Bespoke coffins

One of the great things about English willow coffins is the fact that they can be tailor-made, designed and customised according to your needs. This is important if you need a specific size or maybe you just want a bespoke coffin that is very unique and expresses the personality of your loved one or yourself.

Baby coffin

Wicker coffins that have been caringly woven are a really lovely way to say farewell to a treasured infant. At Think Willow we offer handcrafted wicker coffins that show love and affection. Here are three beautiful wicker coffins.

Wicker coffin factsheet

One of the great things about English willow coffins is the fact that they can be tailor-made, designed and customised according to your needs. This is important if you need a specific size or maybe you just want a bespoke coffin that is very unique and expresses the personality of your loved one or yourself.

1. Do I have to buy a wicker coffin from a Funeral Director?
No. Wicker coffins also known as willow coffins can be purchased online at Willow. You can choose to have your Wicker coffin or willow coffin sent to a Funeral Director or a home.

2. Can a wicker coffin be cremated?
Yes. Wicker coffins are environmentally friendly which means they are an ideal choice for cremation. At Willow we sell the best quality wicker coffins that are made from sustainable willow or seagrass. These are natural eco friendly materials which are both suitable for cremations. You can safely select a wicker coffin for a cremation.

3. Can a wicker coffin be buried?
Yes. Wicker coffins are easily carried if they have functional load-bearing handles. Not all wicker coffins have handles so you need to check your willow coffin carefully. Handles may not be so important if you are opting for a traditional burial or cremation. However, if you are planning a natural burial and green burial you may need to think about carrying your wicker coffin to your woodland burial spot.

4. Can a wicker coffin be carried?
Yes. Wicker coffins are easily carried if they have functional load-bearing handles. Not all wicker coffins have handles so you need to check your willow coffin carefully. Handles may not be so important if you are opting for a traditional burial or cremation. However, if you are planning a natural burial and green burial you may need to think about carrying your wicker coffin to your woodland burial spot.

5. Can I write on and attach items to a picture coffin?
Yes, wicker coffins can be painted, have notes and last words written on them or pictures with your memories attached. Wicker willow coffins are woven using traditional techniques which makes it easy to attach decorations to them. However weighty items may damage the structure of the coffin.

6. How much do Wicker Coffins cost?
The cost  of  wicker coffins can vary depending on the type of material and the origin of the coffin. Wicker coffins can be made from materials like bamboo, seagrass and English willow. Typically, the  cost of a wicker coffin is between £425 – £999.

7. Where can I buy a Wicker Coffin?
Wicker coffins can be bought online at  Thinkwillow.com

ThinkWillow has a range of wicker coffins and caskets. You can choose from traditional willow coffins or delightful bamboo or pandanus wicker coffins.

8. Are Wicker Coffins the cheapest kind of coffin to buy?
No. Wicker coffins aren't always the cheapest option. Cardboard coffins are typically the lowest budget option. Cardboard coffins come in a range of colours and designs and are often made from sustainable materials. Please see our ‘Cardboard coffins guide’ here.

9. Are Wicker Coffins good for the environment?
Yes. Wicker Coffins are an affordable, sustainable and customisable way to take care of a loved one while honouring the environment. They are the ultimate in environmental recycling because they are so highly biodegradable. Wicker coffins are perfect for natural burial and green burial options.

10. How can I find a natural burial site?
You can read our guides on natural burial sites or check the Natural Death website for a list of burial sites.


4 comments

  • This is what I want. They are beautiful and make so much sense. How much time for shipment? Would be shipped to funeral home, would like to lock in price. Thank you

    Judy Campbell
  • if dried sun flowers in with price of coffin
    if not can this be done allarund and on top

    lynda kenmire
  • Hello there, I attended a service of cremation in Shrewsbury recently where a wicker coffin from your company was used, it was absolutely beautiful. I’ve often wondered whether a natural fibre coffin can be bought in advance; I have clients in my therapy business who will speak of needing to see and be with their own chosen casket for various lengths of time, they speak in terms of wishing to feel a sense of safety & comfort from this ownership, facing their future rather than being blinded or sanitised to the eventuality of their death. Seeing your wicker coffin made me think to contact you for the answer to this question: would the fibres deteriorate after certain time if one purchased ‘too soon’? And would there need to be a specific atmosphere/temperature/humidity for storage? I would be so grateful for your answers. Many thanks x

    Stephanie Hamer
  • My wife left us on New Year’s Eve and the funeral will be in about three weeks time.
    I have looked at willow coffins and I would prefer the oval shape with a flat top and rings for the pall bearers. Can you give me some idea of lead time from date of order to delivery to our funeral directors here in Dorset near Bournemouth

    David Walker

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