Sunday, February 3, 2013


It's a great idea. If you have a popular web site and you're willing to do the work, have a valentine exchange. That's what Aunt Peaches is doing. It's one of the blogs I read. You send in your name, address and email and, in return,  you get 3 names to whom you send hand made valentines. That's the kicker. No Hallmark or American Greetings off the shelf valentines here. You gotta get your creative juices going and make something.

Sure. I can do that. Three valentines? Piece of cake. So, I sign up. Wednesday, the email comes with my names. "Please have your valentines in the mail by February 5th." Wait. What? Cripes, that's next week.

Funny how time poofs and the deadline is here when you vowed you'd get these done at least a week before they were due. Um...yeah. As I was falling asleep on Wednesday night, an idea came to me. "I can do that," I thinks. "I just need some supplies." After the doctor's visit on Thursday, I dashed up to JoAnn Fabrics for supplies. Saturday was the major craft day with this morning, the finishing day. Here's what I did.

I bought heavy card stock in a creamy white and covered with glitter. I've been brushing minute pieces of glitter off my clothes since yesterday, but it looks really neat. The 12 x 12 piece of stock was cut into four pieces.
Then, I took a piece of paper cut the same size as one of these pieces and cut a heart template.
At this point, I had to work around the cat. I traced around the heart on each of the pieces, moving the tail as necessary.
When that was done, I took a piece of the heart tissue paper, folded it so I had four layers, all bigger than the card piece, and cut four squares the same size as the card stock. She was happy as long as she had a piece of tissue paper to lie on.
Set these aside. They will be the back of the stock heart. Resume tracing the heart template onto your card pieces. She got bored at this point and left.

Now, you're going to make a grid on the back side of the heart. I measured and marked off every inch across the heart in both directions, left to right and top to bottom. Then, I measured one quarter inch (1/4") off the original mark. It's, ultimately, going to look like a lattice when you're done. You can measure square, as I did, or change the measurement with left to right or top to bottom.
Once you've put the grid on the heart, you'll need to eyeball the heart shape onto your grid using the same width as in your grid. Draw the interior line for the heart shape.

Then, take an Exacto knife or other sharp cutting tool and cut out the shapes following your grid pattern. I do NOT recommend using a scissors. You won't get clean lines and if you're using heavy duty card stock, as I did, the scissors won't poke through without a lot of force. Slowly cut out the squares and oddball shapes.
Be sure you have something below your stock as you'll be cutting through it and you don't want to mar a table top. I used a cutting board.

Eventually, with the last card, I wised up and cut all the lines in one direction and then rotated the card to cut all the lines in another direction. Then, it was like poking out paper dolls from my youth, quite fun actually. The amount of force I needed to use to cut through the stock was a bit hard on my hand and made it ache so I'm glad I didn't decide that everyone on my list was getting a hand made card. It's a great idea but not so practical unless I start now for next year.

When you're done, you'll have something that looks like this. This was cool in and of itself. I almost stopped there, but it wasn't what I had in mind.
Cut out the heart shape. Now, round up those tissue paper squares you cut earlier. Take your glue and put a line around the outside of the heart shape.
Stick it onto the right side of the tissue paper square. Your tissue paper is going to be a bit bigger than your heart, so if your tissue paper has a design on it, like mine did, you can decide what part of the design shows through the lattice.
At this point, the other cat decided to see what I was doing and was in my face. She didn't step on the hearts but sniffed everything before deciding that there wasn't anything exciting going on up here so she'd go back to the top of the recliner. Such help.

Once you get the hearts glued to the tissue, you need to let this dry, preferably overnight. In the morning, cut the tissue away from the heart. I just used a scissors to cut around the shape.

When that is done, take a piece of clear tape and apply it to the area below the top point, where the round sides of the heart meet in the middle. Take a hole punch and punch the tissue through the tape and tissue. Measure a piece of grosgrain ribbon, thread through the hole and tie in a knot.
There. Done. Here are the three valentines ready for mailing. I opted not to add the gem. They didn't need it. I'll save that for something else.
I'm really happy with how these turned out. They are sturdy but lightweight and won't cost a ton to mail. They are bigger than a usual valentine card. I hope the ladies who get them will be happy with them. I saved the one piece of card stock that I didn't cut. I'll use it as an idea. This would be cool as a snowflake for Christmas or a pumpkin for Halloween or a cake for birthday. The colors of both card stock and tissue paper are endless.

Supply list:
  • One piece heavy card stock
  • One package tissue paper
  • Scrap paper to draw template
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Exacto knife or other sharp cutting implement
  • Glue
  • Hole punch
  • Tape
  • Ribbon
Cats are optional.

Beverage:  Darjeeling tea


1 comment:

  1. That's really very cute! I had so much fun with this swap - hope to participate again next year.

    What is it with cats and craftiness? My younger cat was having a fit when my roommate and I were making our valentines. She loves to steal bottle caps and my roommate was using some to make one of her cards. Kalli went insane. There was a lot of "Seriously? No! NO!"