Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Celebrating May Day

Mayday! Mayday!
Oops! Wrong Mayday!
That Mayday is an international radiotelephone signal word used by aircraft and ships in distress.
The May day I am talking about is the first day of the month of May.


The next 4 pictures came out of a book called "Victorian Family Celebrations" by Sarah Ban Breathnach. It is a great book with super cute illustrations!

You may be thinking, what exactly do you do on May Day? Well let me tell you what the book says.
On this day children would rise early and venture out into the fields to collect wildflowers. These they would fashion into garlands and baskets of spring blossoms to be delivered in secret to friends and neighbors.
Later the children would gather around a Maypole, a large birch branch erected on the common green to which multicolored ribbons had been attached. Each child would hold on to a ribbon to perform high-stepping dances around the pole. The highlight of the occasion was the crowning with flowers of the "Queen of the May" who would then preside over the festivities of games and a springtime party of cakes and punch to which the entire town was invited.

Pictured below are some darling Victorian children all ready for the day.

"May Queens" around the Maypole...

An indoor May party in 1902.

And...you know me with my postcards! Here are a few that reminded me of May Day.

And I really like the simplicity and sweetness of these forget-me-nots in a ribbon tied paper cone.

Well, that is it for today, I have to go to work now but I hope you have enjoyed your May day tutorial. lol
May you all be crowned Queen (or King) of the May today. So, from my house to yours, my dear blogger friends, Happy May Day!

I am joining the following parties, please come and join us!
TREASURE HUNT THURSDAY with Pamela at From My Front Porch to Yours
WHAT'S IT WEDNESDAY with Patti and Ivy and Elephants
HOME with Sandi at Rose Chintz Cottage


  1. Hi Gina: Love this post. Everything is beautiful..Happy May Day to you..Judy

  2. I think it is sad that we modern American's have lost some of the most beautiful traditions. Such a simple thing a May Day basket on the door knob for a friend. I am guilty. Seems like people think you are crazy. No May Poles, most have never heard of that tradition. Such a shame all we care about is TV, Computer games and cell phones. I have to admit I love my computer and TV, need to get a grip and get back to the age of Romance. Richard from My Old Historic House.

  3. Oops, lost my post! Your post cards are very cute; especially the forget-me-nots! I like the cone hanging on your door knob too. Happy May Day, Gina, and thanks for joining me at my HOME. BTW, I don't mind you sharing older posts at all as long as you don't share it again in two weeks time. :) Have a lovely weekend.


  4. Happy May day- love all of your vintage images!-I found you on Ivy and Elephants. I did a May day post too and was worried it was a long forgotten holiday - but seems lots of people have such fond memories of it-maybe it will make a comeback!

  5. Beautiful post! Happy May-Day.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Hope to see you on my blog:)

  6. I like your cone! It is very sweet on that doorknob!

  7. So pretty! When I was really little, my mom, brother, and I would leave a May Day basket on my great-grandma's doorstep. In grade school, we did a maypole dance and wrapped ribbons round a pole while parents watched. A friend of mine just posted some pictures of her mother as the May Day queen in the 30s. I'm visiting you from Sandi's HOME party. Hope you're having a nice week. I've posted the new Homemaking Party for the week and would love to have you link up, if you'd like!

    Mrs. Sarah Coller