Monday, February 10, 2014

Simple (with a capital S) Toddler Valentine

Today, I'm venturing into unchartered waters here on NSB - I'm crafting.  Technically, I did the crafting last week and you're just reading about it now.  And, technically, crafting is a mischaracterization of what happened because I'm pretty sure that crafting involves skill and the following requires no skill (at all).  True crafters who make actual crafts will (understandably) poo poo my efforts, but I'm going out on a limb and sharing anyway.

Valentine's Day is nearly upon us (hint: it's this Friday).  This year, with the help of my delightful toddler, I decided to send homemade Valentine's to some long distance loved ones.  My little lady and I joined forces and came up a hand print heart Valentine.  Here is the play-by-play.

I bought red paint at Joann's Fabric.  The label said "washable" and "non-toxic", there were hand prints on the label...which is the centerpiece of the project...and it cost something like $5, so I scooped it.  I couldn't find a link on the Joann's Fabric website, but here is one on Amazon.

Before we got down to business, I did some quick prep.  The kitchen was our project site, so I removed all fabric items in arm's reach, including a couple dishtowels and a little rug.  I brought my daughter down to her skivvies diaper and put on an old t-shirt.  Even with the label saying "washable", I didn't want to take any chances.

At last, the fun began.  I squirted about 5 tablespoons (total guestimation) of red paint onto a paper plate.  I took my daughter's right hand and smooshed it into the paint.  Now, here's where one may argue that a slight amount of skill is involved: I pressed her paint-covered palm onto a piece of paper.  I had a stack of heather gray/brown 8x11" paper, but any paper would do (including standard white printer paper).  Sometime around print eight, she realized that she could make things other than the paper red.  Thankfully, I saw the bulb illuminate and immediately brought the project to a premature end.

Here is one of the hand prints.  As you can see,  it is by no means perfectly shaped.  None of them were, but they got the point across (the point being - this is the relative shape and size of my daughter's hand).

Above is the full paper perspective, so you get a feel for the true lack of precision - not only was the print itself smudgy, but there was no rhyme or reason as to where it landed on the paper.

The prints needed about two hours to dry.  Once dry, the mildly creative portion of the project began.  My idea was to use the shape of my daughter's hand to make a heart.  Originally, I planned to print both of her palms next to one another, thumbs touching, which I thought it would look like a heart.  But, after the successful albeit short-lived right hand printing, I called it a day while I was ahead.  So, instead of letting the hand print be the heart on its own, I added a little embellishment.  I made a faint outline of a heart with a pencil around the hand, using the shape of the hand to guide me.  Once my sketched heart looked relatively balanced, I traced over the pencil with a pink Sharpie, erased the pencil marks and added a Valentine's message with a fine tip red marker.  Ta Da!

Not too shabby.  I did another.  But, after the second, I couldn't take the smell of the Sharpie anymore.  My singed nostrils needed a break.  So, I switched to colored pencils for the remaining bunch.

Final step, I cut the paper in half (approximately), leaving me with 8.5 x 5.5" piece, which I then folded in half to make a card.  The hand print and note were on the inside and here is what I did on the outside...

I dug out a heart stamp and a purple ink pad (both were purchased from The Paper Source about 4 years ago) and fancied up the front of the cards with a heart or two (or ten) and the first half of the message (i.e. "Dear Mom" or "Dear Auntie").  Here's one to Grandma Rhoda.

And there you have it - a handmade hand print Valentine that is part adorable and part murder scene creepy.  I think our friends and family will love them...once they realize the hand print is made of paint and not blood.

Happy Valentine crafting.

1 comment:

Jaime said...

We just got ours, love!!