(apologies for my photo quality...I'm tired and took these on auto with a flash)
I've spent some time the last few days working on a puffy Valentine heart garland for my mantle. I mostly made this during naptime--it really isn't a multiday project, but I've had a crazy week! My little boy loves this garland and sang me a song today about "puffy hearts"--it was very sweet and brought a smile to my face.
heart cookie cutter (or the ability to freehand a good heart shape!)
red felt (1/8 - 1/4 a yard, depending on the size of your garland)
white felt (1/8 a yard)
red embroidery floss
white embroidery floss
polyfil (or just use your scraps of felt to stuff the puffy hearts
white grosgrain ribbon
First I used my Wilton heart cookie cutter and an ink pen and traced a bunch of hearts onto red felt. I used cheap felt sold by the bolt at JoAnn's. You could use felt squares too--but the other felt was on sale, so that's what I bought. I just used a regular old pen, not a fabric pen to trace the hearts--it worked just fine.
Then I traced a big heart onto some scrap paper and eyeballed it and traced a smaller heart inside it and cut that out to get the template for my smaller (white) hearts. Then I traced and cut my white hearts out of felt.
This bag of buttons was on sale at JoAnn's--usual price is $2.29. I don't have a button stash and I'm envious of those of you who do.
I used embroidery floss (it is very inexpensive--under 40 cents each) to sew on my buttons. I chose white floss to sew on the red buttons because I like the contrast. On some hearts I sewed three buttons and on other hearts I did one button.
I did all of the button sewing before moving onto the next step.
Next I used red embroidery floss and stitched (just a basic straight stitch--nothing fancy, although you could do a blanket stitch) 3/4 of the way around the white heart, sewing it down onto the red heart. Then I grabbed some polyfil (fluff!) from my stash. You also could use the scraps of felt from when you were cutting out the heart shapes.
Stuff the fluff into the little pocket you've made. I put in a tiny bit more fluff after I took this picture. Then you stitch up the opening the rest of the way.
After all your hearts are made (and your little boy ooohs and aaahs over them!), start pinning them to some grosgrain ribbon. I took my ribbon and my pile of hearts over to my mantle and put my ribbon (still attached to the spool at one end!) where I wanted my garland to go and then I pinned the hearts on while standing in front of the fireplace. I'm glad I did this because I had been planning on sewing the ribbon on the back of the middle of the hearts. Apparently I forgot about gravity...because as soon as I pinned the middle of a heart back onto a ribbon, the whole thing tipped forward and looked ridiculous! Ooops! Everything worked much better after I pinned the heart tops to the ribbon. I didn't do any measuring--just pinned the hearts where I thought they looked good. Then I took the garland back to the table and used red floss and did some straight stitches and sewed my red hearts to the white ribbon. I think you could even use hot glue for this step, but I didn't feel like getting out my glue gun.
That's it! So easy and it turns out so cute! (click on picture to enlarge it) My husband was quite surprised at how such a simple project can have a big impact. (And yes, I know there is a big blank space staring at you--I took down the twig wreath I had up there because I really didn't like it at all. I have a project planned for above the mantle...now I just need to find some time to do it!)
This project was super easy and I just love how it turned out. Please let me know if you try it--I'd love to feature your project!
Making this puffy heart garland reminded me a lot of the Valentine wands I made last year--my children still love those wands!