Make May Day Cones

(Photo by Armstrong Pitts Studio)

Have you heard of May Day Cones? Little cones, often paper, filled with a small bouquet of blooming flowers from the yard, hung on the front doorknob for friends and neighbors on the first day of May. The perfect way to announce “Spring is Here”.
I don’t know about you, but Seattle is very drippy and gray through the Winter months, and with everyone nesting inside, we don’t see our neighbors much. But when the days get a little brighter, a little longer, suddenly everyone takes their coffees outside! We reacquaint ourselves with each other again. We all reconnect with each other.

When my kids were little, we would make May Day Cones and leave them hung on doorknobs. The kids enjoyed the ringing the doorbell and running away part, I enjoyed reconnecting with my neighbors. There was something in it for everyone.
I think this is such a nice tradition, I would like to think that, even though my kids are older and not into the ringing the doorbell and running away part, that they still feel connected to our neighbors because of little acts like this.

The May Day Cones above are a project I designed for my first book, Wise Craft. They could not be easier! The cones are made from packing paper and sheets torn from a music book purchased at the thrift store. For the book project we actually tried putting in small potted plants, and it worked!


May Day Cones


from Wise Craft: Turning Thrift Store Finds, Fabric Scraps, and Natural Objects Into Stuff You Love

  • Brown kraft paper, a brown grocery bag would do (have the non-printed side facing out)
  • Sheet music from the thrift store (or what about a book of poetry?)
  • Paper scissors
  • Double sided tape
  • Plastic sandwich bag
  • Small plant with roots, like Ivy, a small fern, or a succulent
  • Hole punch
  • Scraps of ribbon or yarn about 18″ long

To Make:

  1. Cut a single sheet of music and some brown kraft paper to the same size (I cut the brown paper to the same size as the sheet music, roughly 8 1/2 x 11″
  2. Fold the brown paper into a cone shape and secure with a piece of double sided tape. Do the same with the sheet music, making sure it can fit over the brown paper cone. Secure them together with double sided tape.
  3. If using a small plant- Remove from its container, and put the roots into plastic sandwich bag. Slip this down into the top of the cone. If using flowers, simply fill the cone with them.
  4. Punch two holes at the top of the cone to insert a ribbon or length of yarn to make a hanger.
  5. Leave hanging from the front door of your neighbor or friend’s house to brighten their day!


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