Homemade Is Where the Heart Is


Let your creativity shine this Valentine’s Day. You and your child can share a project to create inexpensive, love-filled valentines. Here are designs from Disney Family Fun Magazine, Main Line Art Center and The Handwork Studio.


Choose a design:  Feet  Popsicles  |  Fingerprints  |  Plant  |  String Heart


Heart and Sole: Feet

Tracing your feet or hands can create uniquely personal valentines. From Disney Family Fun.

What You’ll Need: Colored cardstock or heavy construction paper, scissors, glue, markers, flat-bottomed rhinestones or small plastic beads, available at craft stores. Look for ones that are heart-shaped.

  1. Trace your child’s feet onto the paper. If you’d rather not use feet, hands work just as well. If you’re making multiple cards, cut out the shapes to use as a template.
  2. Glue two feet at the heels to form a heart and use a marker to write a message.
  3. Glue rhinestones or beads to the toes for polished nails.

One-liner: “You’re my sole mate”; “I get a kick out of you!”; “You are toe nice!”

The Right Paper

Construction paper might not hold up when you use thicker markers and glue. Instead, Paper Source, which has locations in Philadelphia and Ardmore, PA, suggests using cardstock. Craft supply stories like Paper Source also sell card-making kits for kids who bring valentines to their classmates.


Melting for You: Popsicles

Even in the winter, this mini-ice pops valentine can warm hearts. From Disney Family Fun.

What You’ll Need: Cardstock, multi-colored drinking straws, uncooked spaghetti, glue, heart cutouts, stickers

  1. Cut short lengths from the straws and attach them in pairs to cardstock.
  2. Glue small segments of spaghetti for the sticks, then add a message and heart cutouts or stickers.
  3. (Optional) Use decorative scissors to give the card a pretty edge. Glue it to a folded sheet of cardstock.

One-liner: “You Make My Heart Melt”


ThumBunny: Fingerprints

 Identify yourself with this thumbprint valentine. It works well with young kids. From Disney Family Fun.

What You’ll Need: Paper, white paint, paper plate, black and pink (or red) markers

  1. Use the paintbrush to spread a thin layer of paint on the bottom of the paper plate.
  2. Have your kids dip their thumbs into the paint and print them on the card to make the bunny’s head. For the ears, have them press down only half of their thumb to make a long, skinny shape.
  3. Allow the paint to dry, and with the markers, draw whiskers, eyes and a nose.

One-liner: “Thumb Bunny Loves You”


Grow Your Affection

Stacie Brennan, a mom and education director of the Main Line Art Center in Haverford, PA, grows her love with an at-home Plantable Valentine.

What You’ll Need: Recycled paper such as paper tubes or junkmail (not glossy paper), blender, water, heart-shaped cookie cutter (3-4” in circumference), small bowl (just larger than cookie cutter), metal screens or mesh (cut larger than your cookie cutter), plastic screen or heavy canvas (used in needle pointing), wooden block or flat heavy object for pressing out water, paper towels for drying, wildflower seeds.


  1. Rip paper into small pieces and blend it with some water (you can always add more). Add pink paper, paint or food coloring if needed.
  2. Set up a bowl with the heavy plastic mesh on top and a metal screen on top of that.
  3. Place the cookie cutter in the center, and pour in the paper mixture, spreading in around with your fingers or the back of a spoon.
  4. Sprinkle in the wildflower seeds and allow them to seep into the mixture.
  5. Allow excess water to drain into the bowl for 20-30 seconds.
  6. Carefully pull off the cookie cutter, placing another metal screen on top.
  7. Gently press out more water with your palm. Place a wooden block on top and press again.
  8. Remove the screens and turn the heart onto a paper towel to dry. Blot the heart again with the paper towel (if very wet, you can again apply pressure with the wooden block).
  9. Allow to dry for at least 24 hours before you begin decorating. Use anything you may have at home, including markers, to personalize your Valentine.
  10. Plant the seeded heart in a thin layer of soil, water thoroughly. Place in a sunny spot and keep moist to watch your heart grow!

String-Art Heart

You will be sew in love with this card idea from mom of two, Laura Kelly , owner of The Handwork Studio in Narberth, PA.

What You’ll Need: Card stock, Embroidery floss (red), Embroidery needle, Template.

  1. Copy the template (below) onto your card stock using a copy machine or a printer. To print it, right-click on the template image and save it to your desktop. Then open the file and print.
  2. The printed design should be on the back-side of the card so the plain side will be only the string art.
  3. Thread the needle with a few feet of embroidery floss, and tie a knot on the end.
  4. Take care to start with the numbered side so the knot is on the back of the card. Begin sewing from number 1 and follow the numbers until you reach the end (38).

    • For the odd numbered dots, the needle will be going from the back-side to the front-side.
    • For the even numbered dots, the needle will be going from the front to the back of the card. For more accurate stitches, the even numbered dots should be poked from the back so that the dot can be found from the front.
  5. When you are finished, you can leave the card as is or glue or stitch a piece of fabric on the back-side to cover the numbers.
String art heart template

Allie C. Rosenstein is an editorial intern for MetroKids.


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