One of the most exciting things about February 14th is making and exchanging paper valentines. A Valentine Mobile makes a creative and unique substitution for a card, and also serves as a re-usable decoration for February 14th.
In the wonderful book Tasha Tudor's Old-Fashioned Gifts, Tasha Tudor and Linda Allen include instructions for making Valentine Mobiles and today we are going to show you how to make our own, somewhat simplified, version!
- good quality heavy construction paper in your favorite shades of pink and red
- lightweight poster board for templates
- finely pointed sharp scissors
- needle with a wide eye
- pink, red, or gold thread (we used a combination)
- glue stick
- heart-shaped hole punch (we used the 2 3/8" inch Recollections Lever Punch, found at craft stores)
- assortment of red/pink doilies, patterned origami paper (optional)
1) On a piece of heavy construction paper, draw a circle that is roughly 7 1/2" inches in diameter. The circle needs to be large enough to fit six evenly spaced 2 ⅜” hearts around it. A medium sized plate or bowl can be used to help trace. Cut out.
Now, take your lightweight poster board and use your heart-shaped hole punch to cut out 6 hearts. If you don't have a heart-shaped hole punch, cut out a 2 ⅜” heart that you can trace 6 times. Lay your cut-out hearts on the the circular paper like so:
Trace each heart in this position and then, using your heart-shaped hole punch, punch each one out. You’ll want to make sure that each hole punched is lined up with the penciled hearts you drew above.
Once all the hearts have been cut out, set this piece aside. It will become the top of the mobile, from which the rest of the hearts will hang.
2) Now you are going to create the two sizes of smaller hearts that will hang on threads from the mobile. Make a second heart-shaped template from your poster board that is twice the size of the hearts you made above (roughly 4 ½”). With this new template, cut out 5-10 hearts, depending on how elaborate you want your mobile to be. We used 5 construction paper hearts in various shades of red, two lace doily hearts, and one die-cut glitter heart, all of which can be found at crafts stores. You can get creative about what colors and materials you make your hearts out of!
Next, draw a circle in the center of each of the hearts you cut out. The circle should be about 1 1/4" in diameter. We traced the lid of one of Tasha's tea pots for this but a small paper cup will work too!
Once you've drawn your circles on each heart, fold the hearts in half and cut out the circle. Try not to crease the fold too hard so it will still lay flat after you have cut the circle out.
Now, for each of the hearts, cut one smaller heart to hang in the center. This is where you can get creative and use your patterned origami paper or doilies.
Sewing the small heart into the center of the larger heart so that it dangles within the circular cut out.
4) When you've finished with that, thread your needle through the top indentation of the larger hearts and pass the needle up from underneath the large circle you made for the top of the mobile in Step 1 so that the hearts hang from the circle. You want the mobile to be balanced so we recommend threading your hearts so that they hang in between each of the heart-shaped cut-outs on the top mobile piece, like so:
As you thread the gold thread through the top of the mobile, do it in the same way that you would sew on a button, going in and out of two different needle holes spaced closely together so that you create a bridge of thread on the top of the mobile, this will be helpful later!
We hung a beautiful die-cut glittery heart from the very center of the circle!
5) Once all the the hearts are attached to the circle. you will need to attach the thread that you will hang the mobile from. We used a slightly thicker thread for this part of the project.
Cut six strands of the thicker thread so that they are all the same length, about 18 inches long.
We simply threaded our needle with our thicker strings and passed them through the bridges that we made earlier (on the top of the mobile with the gold thread that the hearts are hanging from.) You will want to attach a piece of your thicker thread at the six points between the cut out hearts.
6) The last step is to tie off the thread at the top with a loop that you can use to hang your mobile from ceilings, light fixtures, or doorways!
And Voila! You now have a beautiful piece of art to gift loved ones or decorate your home with!
Making Tasha Tudor inspired crafts for your loved ones this year? We want to see them! Post your photos on Facebook and Instagram, tag Tasha Tudor and Family and use the hashtag #tashatudorcrafts.
Valentine mobile in Tasha Tudor's Old Fashioned Gifts. Illustration by Linda Allen.