Baskets have been used to hold, carry and gift things for many centuries, from perfume to eggs to wine. And the idea of the gift basket as we know it, the kind Michael Scott and Dwight Schrute passed around to former clients on The Office, is still one of the most popular forms of gift-giving during the holidays and other major events. Something about the basket and its contents presents an attractive package to distribute as a gift.I actually found a nice article on the history of gift baskets here, which, instead of repeating, I’ll let you read for yourself. For us at Wine.com, we’ve been part of the gifting business for a while, but we’ve also taken a different look at the basket. There are some who are perhaps tired of giving (or getting) wicker to hold a gift, not to mention that baskets often have a lot of filling that gets thrown out. If you are tired of wicker, here are some ideas for gift “basket” alternatives: Tuscan Trattoria – Since you receive pasta with this gift, what better way to package it than in a colander! So really, you get to use all that you get here. Less waste, more use. Executive Selection Cabernet Quartet – All business here, with four bottles of wine and some goodies and gadgets – we put it all in a leatherette magazine holder rather than a basket. Definitely something that can be used afterwards. Spanish Paella Gift Set – Another foodie gift that gets packaged with a Paella pan rather than a wicker basket – use and re-use. Do you buy gift baskets as gifts? What do you look for when you do?