Making Homemade Valentines
Cards from the Heart
I Make These Every Year for My Family
Over the years I've made a lot of valentines for my family. They look forward to my handcrafted cards because I made them with love and personalize them for each recipient.
It's a good project to recycle papers that you save up in the months leading up to February. I hoard some gold, silver and red parts from Christmas cards, images clipped from advertisements that come in the mail and other odds and ends.
If you are into scrapbooking, then you already have lots of nifty tools on hand like scissors that cut interesting borders and punches for hearts or decorative corners.
Be creative in finding decorative pieces for your valentines. Cut out words from magazines and pictures from calendars. Save scraps of lace and ribbon.
Check at the public library for books on paper crafts and card making if you need more inspiration. Have fun and be creative this Valentine's Day.
Materials and Tools for Paper Crafting
Time required: 30 minutes
- pretty papers (different colors and textures)
- stick on letters
- colored pens (some come in special tips, look also for glitter pens)
- scrapbooking punches and specialty scissors
- roll-on double-stick tape
So Much Easier to Use Than Glue
I keep these on hand, not just for crafts, but also for office use in the home. They are so much more handy than using glue and not on the surface like scotch tape is.
Just roll the tape on and press the two pieces of paper together. Presto!
The problem that I had with glue was getting it evenly applied so there wouldn't be lumps or loose spots. I put this tape around the edges and then press it down.
Assemble your tools and supplies. If you have a regular craft area with a work table and craft supplies, then you are ready to start.
If not, any table will serve, even though you'll have to clear your project away to fix dinner. If you are using glue or paint, you'll want to cover the table or use a blotter to contain any mess.
I use a regular desk chair which is comfortable while I work on my cards for the family each February.
It's great if you have some scrapbooking scissors for making special edges. You get wavy and special effects with these.
I have a set like this and it is really fun to try out different edge effects. You can get by with just 1 or 2, but if you really get into the card making, it's fun to have lots of choices for edge designs. I have a set of 24 and am quite happy with them. The wood rack is great as you can whirl it around to find the edge shape that you want to use.
Add ribbon, lace, bits from old cards and some stickers. I hoard these up throughout the year, until February comes around.
Arrange them in a way that pleases you. Experiment until it looks right to you, then stick everything down.
Step 4 - Collect Supplies Throughout the Year
Here's my stash of ribbons and lace. You'll find these quite cheap at yard sales. You can also raid your daughter's hair ribbons that she doesn't wear anymore.
Save these up to use for wrapping gifts, for card making and for your fancy homemade Valentines.
Example Valentine for a Boy
For this one, I've used a blank card, used corner punches for the overlay, cut a graphic from an old calendar and the heart from a pretty paper. I finished it off with some stick on letters.
Ice Skater Valentine Design
How I Made the Skating Valentine
This one combined parts of 2 Christmas cards (the skate graphic and the silver snowflake background).
I added part of a dryer sheet for the snow at the bottom and used a label machine to make the lettering.
The hearts were cut from scraps of pretty paper that I'd saved.
I think it turned out quite pretty.
More Ideas for Your Card Making
It's not about saving money on cards. It's about creating a valentine especially for your loved one. They will treasure your creation that shows you took the time to do something besides pick up a card at Wal-Mart.
Let the design of the card help you decide on the card's message. Save up bits of shiny paper, ribbons, eye-catching pictures from magazines or cards, and other odds and ends to use on your cards. Anything red or shiny or flowery or lacy has the potential for valentine making.
Get out your tape, glue, and pens. Any scrapbooking supplies like rubber stamps, stickers, punches, fancy scissors, calligraphy pens or stencils that you have will further enhance your cards.
Sort through the pictures and other ephemera that you have to see if any ideas come to you. A simple image combined with a rhyme works just fine.
Don't worry about being corny. Valentines are supposed to be romantic or cutesy. Examples: Use a picture of a cute kitten with the words "YOU... are purrfect to be my Valentine." With a King of Hearts playing card use the words "Happy Valentine's Day to the guy who is king in our hearts." On the front put, "What I Love," and inside put words like "chocolate" "books" "blueberries" "a big warm hug" and "YOU" "YOU" "YOU".
You can also go with simply saying: "Lots of Love on Valentine's Day!" or "Valentine, I love you!" If you need ideas for verses, check online greeting card sites.
People love having their names worked into the design of the card or into the verse. You can use stickers or stamps or write it. Practice first on a piece of scrap paper using a slant-tip felt pen or a gel pen that writes in a lustrous red or glittery silver. If you don't like your handwriting, print out the verse from your computer to paste into the card. Browse through the various fonts to find one that suits the message. This is a chance to use a flowing script or bold calligraphy font.
Cut heart shapes from red paper to add. To get a pattern for a perfect heart shape, fold the paper in half and cut out half a heart away from the fold. Open it and use it for tracing around pictures you want to use. Add bits of ribbon or lace. You can get fancy with pop-up designs and triple-folded cards or keep it simple.
Check the public library for books on card making. They will have scrapbooking books also and the ideas can be applied to cards. There are titles like The Big Book of Handmade Cards or Finding the Right Words: Perfect Phrases to Personalize Your Greeting Cards.
Recycle Old Cards
Personalize with Names or Initials
People love getting a card with their name worked into the design.
Recycle old cards. My nephew's initials are P.E.C. so I used a Christmas card that had the word PEACE on the front. By cutting off the E and decorating over the A, I ended up with a personalized card for a young man.
Inside, I covered the Christmas greeting with plain paper and hand-lettered in my Valentine wishes, "Have a beary happy Valentine's Day, Paul."
Do You Make Valentines?
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My Craft Work Area
Tidy up afterwards
I'm fortunate to have a good work area for my crafting, but any table or counter is fine.
Stash your supplies in a drawer or bins until a card-making occasion comes around.
Good lighting is important.
The unit with drawers was an inexpensive one that I got at Walmart. It gives me a place to keep my rubber stamps, special papers, ribbons, plus scissors and other craft tools.
Stock in Some Blank Cards and Envelopes
You can get various sizes, but keep in mind that really large ones are difficult to mail. Oversize envelopes require extra postage too and are at risk of being folded by the postman.
With blank cards like this that already come with envelopes, all you have to worry about is coming up with creative designs and verses.
Punches Add Fun Corners and Designs
If you do scrapbooking, you are likely to have a selection of these on hand.
Heart Design Paper Punch
These are easy to use. Just slide the paper in (like you would for a stapler), then press down on the punch. You can get other designs as well, like stars or a variety of shapes. I really enjoy the effect of a punch either for making a heart opening in the card or for making a heart-shape to apply to the paper for a dimensional effect.
Here Are More Ideas for Card Making
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If you always wanted to know the 'how to' of card making but never knew how to start cardmaking here's you chance to kick start your paper crafting learning
More Examples of Valentines I've Made for My Family
I Hope I've Inspired You to Make Your Own Valentines This Year
Maybe you have some tips to share here with your card-making ideas. At least let me know that you stopped by.
© 2014 Virginia Allain