Homemade Valentine's Day cards from the heart

by Mollee Bauer

Homemade Valentine'sValentine's Day isn't just for lovers -- it's for families too! Why not celebrate it as one this year? Why limit yourselves?

Instead of making your yearly trek to your favorite [fill-in-the-blank] store and buying those expensive, over-laminated, glossy and mass-produced Valentine's Day cards, make your own special cards! Wouldn't that be more meaningful and create keepsakes for future years? Besides, we bet you can come up with better greetings than that other "big name" company!

In the process, you'll minimize your environmental "footprint," reduce your expenses and encourage your kids to make their own earth-friendly greeting cards.

This project promotes fine motor skills and we bet you'll adore watching the sense of accomplishment that comes after creating such wonderful and personalized masterpieces. I sense a perfect scrapbooking moment coming on!

Homemade Valentine's Day cards

What supplies do you need?

❤ Multiple sheets of colored construction paper
❤ Leftover paper scraps
❤ Scissors (safety ones depending on age)
❤ Yard or thick thread
❤ Wide-eyed needle
❤ Straight pins
❤ Pens
❤ Small hole punch (which is optional)

Making the cards together

Step one: Show your kid how to cut out a paper heart. The easiest way is to fold the paper in half, and cut half-hearts along the edge. Create multiple shapes, sizes and colors for a bigger variety and more decorative and creative cards.

Step two: Now it's your child's turn to fold pieces of construction paper in half to make the actual cards. You want the cards to either open from the right or the bottom.

Step three: You can thread the needle and with the yarn or thread, tie a knot at the end to secure it.

Step four: Ask your child to arrange the hearts on the front of each card however he or she wants them to appear. Once in place, secure the hearts with the straight pins.

Step five: Show your child how to carefully stitch each heart into place. It can be up to your child if they want to creatively sew the edges or just do one big stitch in the middle of each heart.

Step six: After each card is finished, have your child write the greeting or dictate the greeting for you to write in the card. This is where you want your child to get inventive and creative!

Even though this project is more time-intensive that using store-bought cards, we believe the end results will be way more fulfilling, thoughtful and satisfying. Did I happen to mention these cards would be great in a scrapbook someplace? Now where did I put that scissors…

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.