We are celebrating Earth Day by getting a head start on our recycled May Day Baskets. You can make the simply beautiful May Day basket with minimal supplies. It all starts with a tall recycled tin can and a wire coat hanger.

May baskets are a simple way to celebrate spring and a huge part of May Day traditions. So if it’s part of your tradition to surprise a friend with flowers, check out all these great DIY May Day Baskets ideas!


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Crafts like this are great because they teach kids (and adults) to think of new ways to repurpose recyclable materials. There really are no limits on what can be done with an empty tin can. They do, however, make a great May Day basket!

Here’s What you Need to make a May Day Basket:

We used tall tin cans, a coat hanger for the handle, a piece of brown paper grocery bag cut with scalloped scissors, and a piece of twine. Here’s the exact list of supplies needed to make this recycled May Day Basket (affiliate links included):

  • Tall tin cans (such as the ones pasta sauce comes in)
  • A coat hanger
  • Piece of brown paper cut from a brown paper grocery sack
  • Scallop scissors
  • Twine
  • Hammer
  • Nail
  • A pair of pliers

How to make a May Day Basket

To begin make sure the tin can is clean. Then with a hammer and nail punch two holes into the can toward the upper lip of the can on opposite sides.

recycled tin can with two holes punched in it on opposite sides with a bent piece of coat hanger fed through the holes to make a handle making a a basket; there is a piece of scalloped cut brown paper an twine beside and under the can

Next, from a wire coat hanger cut approximately 18″ of wire. Bending it into a curve as shown in the picture to make the handle of the basket. To attach the handle feed the wire through each hole and using pair of pliers squeeze the wire closed making a small loop.

You want to make the handle long (ours was about 18 inches), so it will fit over a doorknob when filled with flowers.

Then cut a piece of brown paper out of the sack with scallop scissors. You’ll want to make sure the paper overlaps when wrapped around the can. The finishing touch of the May Basket is to tie the twine around the middle of the paper.

More Decorating Options: You can make the cans extra sweet by wrapping a scrap of pretty scrapbook paper or fabric and tie a pretty ribbon around the middle. Or add a personal touch to the can by painting a pretty picture on the can. Have fun with it and make it your own!

Now, fill your May Day Basket with your favorite spring flowers. Pick flowers fresh from your yard or buy fresh flowers from your favorite florist. If you want to make your May Day Flowers last, you can use artificial or paper flowers.

recycled may day basket with the brown paper and twine wrapped around filled with spring flowers and hung on a door knob

Here’s the best step of all. Hang the May Day Basket on the doorknob of a neighbor or friend then ring the doorbell and run away. They are sure to love the rustic look of the basket!


While this basket makes the most adorable May Day gifts, these also make great wedding or party decorations. Then once the party is over you can give them away as party favors.

You will find more ways to celebrate May Day here and another May Day Basket Lollipop May Day Basket.

More Eco-Friendly crafts

Interested in other eco-friendly crafts? Check out how to make cloth napkins and how to make a zippered pouch from recycled juice bags.

If you would like a fun learning activity for kids check out these great Earth Day Coloring Pages.

I would love to keep you fully stocked with creative ideas, yummy recipes, fun crafts, and loads of free printables. Subscribe to Skip to my Lou to get new ideas delivered to your inbox. Follow me on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram for all my latest updates.

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  1. What a beautiful basket. I bet your house is lovely with all those baskets ready to go out on May 1. You are the greatest. Thanks.

  2. Hi! I just wanted to stop by and show some love…love your blog, all the crafty ideas and the tips. I am now an avid follower. When you get a chance, stop by my place…I just started blogging a few weeks ago so it’s not all “blinged” out just yet but give me some time and I will have it all together. If you have any suggestions, that would be great too! http://www.menmyhouseblog.blogspot.com. Thanks so much for all the goodness! Have a fabulous Wednesday!

  3. I love it. I have about 10 of these cans. The pacrat in me always keeps things just in case I can use them for something (hubby hates it) but HA vindication! Thanks KIM

  4. Oh, I was just looking around for May basket ideas yesterday, perfect timing. Soup cans is one thing we have a lot of around here, no wire coat hangers though, I’m off to the shed and the craft closet to look for a handle alternative.

  5. What a cute idea! I used to love May Day when I was little! I can’t wait to try this with my daughter!

  6. Love this! I just set out my recycling (on Earth Day!) so I’ll have to plan a few meals around the ideal cans:-) Thanks!

  7. Oh! I love this. I’m bookmarking it and hoping to get to this project later this week. THanks for the inspiration.

  8. I love this idea! I loved it SO much, I had to share this post over at my little blog! This cute idea is certainly worth checking out. Thanks for sharing!
    Now, I am going to dig out some old tin cans and get started! 😉


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