Wednesday, February 20, 2013

3 ways to use heart strings

a better look at our valentine heart strings decor:

i first saw this idea at "under the sycamore" from ashleyann campbell. she got it from dottie angel's tutorial. isn't internet sharing lovely?!

i modified it a bit by using a large heart punch (and a few smalls thrown in for variety). i did this to simplify the process so the kids could participate. also, i didn't back any of the book paper with patterned paper, i just did them separately. my kids really loved the designs so they did a lot more patterned paper than i had originally planned. what, kids change my idea? never!

i had a lot of fun placing the hearts over certain bits of text to highlight it or using the decorative chapter heading flourishes.

i showed the kiddos how to line up the hearts and conserve paper by punching upside down so they could see what they were doing. it kept them entertained for a good stretch. each one of them got to punch and pick out their own paper to their little heart's content. their string lengths reflected their enthusiasm for the project.

hint: when punching through book paper i found it easier to punch through 2 or 3 sheets at a time. it gave more body to the paper and was less likely to malfunction. that was a good find since it also sped up the process.

the little ones got to participate by putting the hearts in place while i ran the presser foot at a medium speed.

it was a fun co-activity. you get to be close while doing this, too. be prepared to snuggle and have some breathing going down your neck or in your ear while tandem stringing.

i also made some strings to hang from the dining room chandelier.
i secured them with a bit of pink striped washi tape.

my strings looked lovely and festive hanging over our candy centerpieces at my annual valentine's sweetheart dinner i throw for the kids each year.

i was so involved with preparations this year that i didn't get around to fixing myself up for the dinner, but i did put on one of my sunday hostess aprons, which helped my appearance while serving up pasta.

another use for these heart strings - i made several feet (forgot to measure how many) for part of my sister's bridal shower present. the shower theme was to bring props for romantic dates for the newlyweds. i figure these can help her set the mood over a dinner or in the bedroom or where ever. all she'll have to do is cut to desired length and hang. presto - instant romance. i wrapped the garland around a piece of chipboard for packaging to gift it. i think i'll store the ones we made this year this way also. it's a project i'll want to do again next year, but having some already made will allow me to get even more hung.

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