A May Basket in 4 Easy Steps

Make These May Baskets in a Few Simple Steps

May basket
Make these beautiful May baskets in a few simple steps. Katherine Lee

May baskets are small baskets that have traditionally been left on the doorsteps or hung on the doorknobs of friends, family, and neighbors on the first day of May. They are often filled with treats, flowers, and other small gifts, and in some cases, can be used to express romantic interest.

You can make your own beautiful May basket with your kids to hang on the door of people you love--or even around your own house to add touches of color. It's a fun and pretty way to celebrate spring, and an excellent way to keep kids entertained with a fun kids' craft. Read on for the easy steps to make these pretty May baskets.

Gather the Materials

Materials to make a May basket
Materials to make a May basket. Katherine Lee

To begin, gather the materials you will need to make these pretty May baskets. You will need:

  • Colored paper (text weight—not too thick since you are making cones)
  • Double-sided tape (like Therm O Web's SuperTape, a good-quality tape that really stays)
  • Paper doily (You can buy paper doilies or make your own with a doily punch—this doily punch starter kit is from Martha Stewart.)
  • Hole puncher
  • Scissors
  • Ribbon

Roll the Paper Into a Cone Shape

Make a cone
Make a cone shape to begin your paper May basket. Katherine Lee

First, make sure your paper is a square shape. (If you are using an 8 1/2" x 11" sheet of paper, cut about 2" off the bottom to get a square sheet of paper.)

Next, put the SuperTape on the left-hand side. Then, take the bottom right corner of the paper and begin rolling it up, as shown.

Secure the Cone

Secure the Cone
Make a cone to make the paper May basket. Katherine Lee

Bring the other side (with the tape on it) toward the rolled paper to complete the cone shape. Once it looks right, press together the edges to seal the cone shape. 

Tape the Lace Doily on the Cone

Tape the Lace Doily on the Cone
Add a pretty lace doily to your paper May basket. Katherine Lee

Tape the paper doily onto the cone. (You can use one or layer a couple—whatever you and your child decide you want to complete this pretty look.) 

Add a Ribbon Handle

Add a handle
Add a handle to your May basket. Katherine Lee

Take your hole punch and make holes on either side of the May basket. To make a handle, put a ribbon through and secure on both sides by making a double knot. 

Make a Bunch of May Baskets in Different Colors

Add flowers
Add some paper flowers to your May basket. Katherine Lee

Now your May baskets are finished! Make a bunch of baskets in different colors and let kids get creative and pick out the color combinations they want. Add some tissue paper flowers or crepe paper flowers or other small gifts to the baskets and give it to the people you care about on May 1!

Note: If you want to put fresh cut flowers instead of paper flowers in your paper May basket, simply soak some paper towels in water and put them in a plastic bag. Put the cut flower stems in the bags and secure with a rubber band, and then put that in the paper May basket. Easy!

More Ideas for May Baskets

  • Take an empty cardboard berries basket and fill it with potting soil and fresh flowers. (If using an empty berries basket, line it with plastic wrap so that the soil doesn't leak out of the bottom.) Punch holes on the sides and secure a ribbon around it to make a handle and hang on a doorknob.
  • Wash and rinse an empty ice cream container and paint it or cover it with paper. Secure ribbon to the container with colorful duct tape or another heavy-duty tape to make a handle. Fill it with potting soil and fresh flowers and hang it on the door of someone you love.
  • Take an empty tin can and put tape around the top edges (to protect little fingers). Hammer holes on the sides (grownups should do this) and put a ribbon through to make a handle. Fill with potting soil and fresh bunches of flowers.