Make a Beaded Valentine!comments (2) February 14th, 2011
I've made handmade Valentines quite a few times over the years, usually paper collages, but this year I felt inspired to try a little beading embellishment instead! Here's a simple how-to for making your own beaded heart (or any other design) card, using just a few minutes and a handful of stash materials.
- Two pieces of contrast-color cardstock (mine measured 4.25 x 5.5 inches each, 1/4 of a standard 8.5 x 11-inch sheet)
- Decorative scissors (mine were scallop-edged)
- Pen or pencil
- Beading needle and nylon thread
- Clear tape
- Seed beads in the color of your choice, coordinating with your cardstock colors (I used red 6/0s)
- Paper glue
1. Trim one piece of cardstock (I used my blue one for the top layer) with your decorative scissors to create a fancy edge so it's slightly smaller than the second piece—this way a contrast color "frame" will show all around your top layer.
2. Draw a simple design (I chose a small heart) on your top layer of cardstock. Don't worry if you make a mistake or your lines get wavy—this side will be hidden from view later. Once you're pleased with your design, use a thumbtack to make small holes for beading all along the main lines. Make two holes close together (as shown), then leave a small space, then two more holes. You'll add each bead at the dual-holes spot and then leave the small space blank for contrast.
3. Using the drawn-on side of the cardstock as the back of the work, thread a beading needle with one strand of nylon thread. Instead of knotting it, tape the tail end behind the card so it's secured in place.
4. Bring your needle up through one of the holes you've punched, add a bead to it, and then bring it back down through the second one in the pair of holes. Pull it taut so that the bead lies neatly on its side. Your thread should be at the back of the card again.
5. Repeat step 4 to continue adding beads, gently pulling the thread taut between stitches so that the beads sit nicely in place.
6. When you have added your last bead, pull the thread so that the beads are neatly held in their spots, and tape the tail end to the back as you did in step 3 to secure it.
7. Now glue your two layers of cardstock together, hiding the stitches and drawing between the two. Let it dry completely before writing your message and sending!
Tips: If you're mailing this card, I'd suggest wrapping it in a layer or two of tissue paper to protect the beads.
You can also glue the flat beaded card onto the front of a folded double-size piece of contrast cardstock to create a greeting-card style instead of this simple postcard!