Niji and AlteredPages got together and allowed us to download five of Altered Pages fabulous digital collage backgrounds. It was fun choosing from the many different styles they have. I chose ones that worked with Valentine’s Day–“Love Words,” and “Script.”
Today, I chose to make an old-fashioned woven heart–invented by story-teller and poet Hans Christian Andersen in 1860, updated with trendy materials from these two arty companies!
The heart is cut from two different, folded pieces of paper, and then woven together. Because the paper is folded, it also opens into a secret pocket, useful for tucking a loving message into. These are easy enough to help your children make for school projects, too. And even if they are more than a century and a half old, the design is still fresh and lovely.
Here are the materials you’ll need:
- Yasutomo watercolors
- Sumi-e gold watercolor
- watercolor brush
- water container
- lotus paint palette
- mixed-media paper
- Altered Pages digital downloads “Love Words” and “Script”
Start by painting a piece of mixed-media paper (about 6 inches x 10 inches) with a mix of Yasutomo reds in the watercolor paints.
Fold each piece of paper in half, creating a piece 5 inches wide and 6 inches long. On the side opposite the fold, cut a rounded top. Repeat with the other piece of paper. You can cut the rounded top, which will be the tops of the heart, with a decorative scissors for a designed edge. I decided to keep mine simple.
Place the paper so the rounded (open) edge is on top and the folded (straight cut) side is on the bottom.
Cut from bottom to top to divide each piece into four pieces. You will need three cuts to do this: The first one will divide the piece in two, the second will divide one half in two, cut three will divide the other half in two. Do not cut further than the point where the curve starts.
Place the two pieces so you can “weave” the strips together. Weaving is done by gently opening the strips, and pushing the opposing strip through it. Here’s a video that shows the steps and may be useful.
When the heart is complete, you will discover you can open it like a pocket. It’s perfect for a secret message. I cut out the words “I love you” from the Altered Pages “Love Words” and wrote a private message on the back before tucking it into the heart.
Have a wonderful Valentine!
–-Quinn McDonald is a member of the Niji Design Team and the author of The Inner Hero Creative Art Journal published by North Light books.