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Homemade Valentine Craft Ideas for Kids

Updated on October 19, 2012

Paper bags and boxes crafted with LOVE!

Paper puppets and memory box.
Paper puppets and memory box. | Source

What's your favorite part about Valentine's Day?

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Easy to make projects that are quick too!

Both of these projects are quick, easy, and use minimal craft supplies. Everything I used to create these projects were items that I already had. I spent less than ten dollars total buying a couple things (mostly Valentine-y paper) at Michael's craft store and Hobby Lobby. Both stores carry all the items used for these projects and I only went to both because they stock different varieties of scrapbook paper.

Buying Craft Supplies

First and foremost, try to use what you already have. These are both great projects for using up odds and ends that you've got leftover in your crafting collection.

Paper - The only items I purchased for these crafts that I didn't already have were some pieces of Valentine-themed scrapbook paper. Buy them in the off season before the cute designs are all gone and take advantage of any sales or coupons. I hit a few different stores for a nice variety.

Decorative Punches - I highly recommend using decorative punches for these projects. You can pre-punch shapes for younger children to use and older children really have fun punching their own designs. I used heart and circle punches for my bag and box projects below. The punches enabled me to save time and make some very creative pieces. If you don't have any in your personal crafting supply, the simple shapes (like hearts, circles and flowers) aren't very expensive. I recently purchased the heart punch that you'll see featured in this hub and only paid $6.00 for it. They are usually about $10.00 but I had an e-coupon on my iPhone and saved $4.00 at Michael's.

Die-Cut Cardstock Hearts - This was my first time using this product and I absolutely swear by them now. I don't have a cricut machine, so when it comes to heart shapes at this size, these are the next best thing. I even used them to trace more hearts onto patterned papers for some of my other crafts. They made completing both of these projects quick and easy-- especially for smaller children. I purchased these hearts in a package of 48 (it includes red, magenta, and white hearts) at Michael's for $2.99. I didn't have to freehand or guess-cut any of my own hearts. I was even able to easily cut one heart into a set of wings and cut another heart into a set of eyes and a beak with only two cuts (see pics).

Lunch Sack Critters - Click photos for additional info.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Owls, elephants, and Batman-- oh my!Eyelashes cut from a separate brown paper bag.  Curl with a scissor blade.Use a total of three paper bags-- 1 for body, 1 for ears, 1 for trunk.  Use hole punch to simulate button eyes.Batman valentine made by my husband using 3 bags-- 1 for body and 1 for each wing.Two very different owls-- a very simple design done on a red bag (left) VS a highly decorated owl on a brown bag that you can't even see anymore.
Owls, elephants, and Batman-- oh my!
Owls, elephants, and Batman-- oh my! | Source
Eyelashes cut from a separate brown paper bag.  Curl with a scissor blade.
Eyelashes cut from a separate brown paper bag. Curl with a scissor blade. | Source
Use a total of three paper bags-- 1 for body, 1 for ears, 1 for trunk.  Use hole punch to simulate button eyes.
Use a total of three paper bags-- 1 for body, 1 for ears, 1 for trunk. Use hole punch to simulate button eyes. | Source
Batman valentine made by my husband using 3 bags-- 1 for body and 1 for each wing.
Batman valentine made by my husband using 3 bags-- 1 for body and 1 for each wing. | Source
Two very different owls-- a very simple design done on a red bag (left) VS a highly decorated owl on a brown bag that you can't even see anymore.
Two very different owls-- a very simple design done on a red bag (left) VS a highly decorated owl on a brown bag that you can't even see anymore. | Source

Click photos for additional info.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Give your owl feathers using a scallop paper punch to create lovely layers!Create owl feathers using a circle punch and a variety of colored and patterned papers!Create owl feathers using a heart punch and pretty paper-- either one solid color or mix it up!Turn a diecut cardstock heart into a beak and eyeballs with a few quick snips!Turn a diecut cardstock heart into a pair of owl wings with a few quick snips!
Give your owl feathers using a scallop paper punch to create lovely layers!
Give your owl feathers using a scallop paper punch to create lovely layers! | Source
Create owl feathers using a circle punch and a variety of colored and patterned papers!
Create owl feathers using a circle punch and a variety of colored and patterned papers! | Source
Create owl feathers using a heart punch and pretty paper-- either one solid color or mix it up!
Create owl feathers using a heart punch and pretty paper-- either one solid color or mix it up! | Source
Turn a diecut cardstock heart into a beak and eyeballs with a few quick snips!
Turn a diecut cardstock heart into a beak and eyeballs with a few quick snips! | Source
Turn a diecut cardstock heart into a pair of owl wings with a few quick snips!
Turn a diecut cardstock heart into a pair of owl wings with a few quick snips! | Source

You will need:

  • a small brown paper bag (brown bag lunch style)
  • paper (construction, scrapbook, craft, etc)
  • glue
  • scissors
  • markers and/or crayons

Brown Paper Lunch Bag Critters

A brown paper lunch bag can lend itself nicely to a valentine's day project. Using a paper bag, creativity, and art supplies, you can transform a plain lunch sack into something truly cute. I completed this craft in a couple different ways: as a gift bag and as a puppet. They're both easy crafts that you can make to keep or to give as a gift.

The gift bag version can be used to collect valentines and candy at a Valentine's Day classroom party, or to put a gift in. Hold on to your brown handled bag from Starbucks or Paradise Bakery and recycle it in this fashion (the logos and printing are easily hidden under your imagination and crafting)! If you don't have one you can use a lunch bag and put your own handles on, or decorate a plain gift bag sold in most stores. Use whatever crafting and art supplies you have at home.

The very bottom of the lunch sack will serve as the face for your puppet. When completed, open the bag, invert it, place it on your hand and have a puppet show. This is a cute craft to make for yourself or as a gift. Use traditional brown paper sacks for eco-friendly puppets or specialty red ones for Valentine's day (I bought a package of red lunch bags at Target in the plastic- and paper-ware aisle.) The red bags are about the same price as the traditional brown ones, although you get about a third of the amount.

A keepsake box worth keeping

Valentine Memory Box
Valentine Memory Box | Source

Turn a plain box into a festive vessel - Click photos for additional info.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
top view - before and afterclose up of lid designfront view - with and without decorationsside view - before and afterclose-up of side view
top view - before and after
top view - before and after | Source
close up of lid design
close up of lid design | Source
front view - with and without decorations
front view - with and without decorations | Source
side view - before and after
side view - before and after | Source
close-up of side view
close-up of side view | Source

You will need:

  • a box (lid optional)
  • paper (construction, tissue, scrapbook, etc)
  • crayons, markers, paint
  • glue
  • decorative punches
  • scissors
  • miscellaneous embellishments

Valentine Themed Memory Box

This craft is a great opportunity to recycle or decorate a box that you might already have laying around the house. If your box has writing or printing on it, simply paint it or cover it with paper before decorating. I used a plain brown keepsake box from Michael's ($3.99) that I use to store old greeting cards in. It's very similar to a shoe box. If you'll be making yours for a Valentine goody box, you can even use a clean/empty Kleenex box which already has a nice hole in the top. Otherwise create a slit/slot on the top of your box so valentines will fit inside.

Decorate your box with practically anything! I used a variety of scrapbook papers, decorative punches, faux pearl adhesive embellishments, and glue. That's it! You can use buttons, flowers, stickers, even dried macaroni! This project comes out beautifully no matter how much time you have to spend on it.

Seal your beautiful box with a light coat of Modge Podge. Choose a glossy shine. It will go on a little white-looking like Elmer's glue but dries clear and shiny (as long as you are using a glossy finish). Matte finish will work also BUT if you're using glitter for example, it will dull your glitter. Gift your creative masterpiece as a memory or keepsake box or simply use it as a beautiful gift box. If you're creating a Valentine memory box for someone special, consider using photographs or their favorite colors when decorating it.

pretty paper that caught my eye

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Colorful cardstock and scrapbook papers in perfect shades and patterns for Valentine's Day crafting.Die Cut Cardstock Hearts | Acid and Lignin free | 6 in x 5.5 in | $2.99 at Michael's
Colorful cardstock and scrapbook papers in perfect shades and patterns for Valentine's Day crafting.
Colorful cardstock and scrapbook papers in perfect shades and patterns for Valentine's Day crafting. | Source
Die Cut Cardstock Hearts | Acid and Lignin free | 6 in x 5.5 in | $2.99 at Michael's
Die Cut Cardstock Hearts | Acid and Lignin free | 6 in x 5.5 in | $2.99 at Michael's | Source

Tips for Enjoyable and Successful Crafting

  • Don't shop at the last minute!

If you're looking for cute paper or embellishments, buy them in advance. Shop ahead of time so you can take advantage of unique selections, sales, and coupons at multiple crafting stores.

  • Pre-cut, pre-punch, and prepare!

If you'll be doing this project with small children or a large group of children, or even both, try to prepare certain elements in advance. Purchase diecut cardstock hearts or pre-punch your own hearts with a decorative punch and lovely seasonal papers-- kids love to use punches but if there aren't enough to use simultaneously then there could be some grumbling and unfinished projects.

  • Use a gluestick!

I used about five different types of glue while making these Valentine crafts just to get a feel for what would work best. I recommend using a glue stick. It's easy to hold-- especially for little hands and the liquid glues (both bottled and tubes) tend to turn your paper to mush and make it curl in all the wrong places.

  • Don't glue your bag or box together!

Unless you mean to! From time-to-time, check on your animal and make sure you haven't accidentally glued its mouth shut or glued it together at the sides when attaching a wing or hand. Same goes for your box. If you want your box lid to still be functional, decorate it separately from the rest of the box. Also make sure both pieces have had adequate time to dry before reuniting them.

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    • sweetstickyrainbo profile image

      sweetstickyrainbo 2 years ago

      Love the cute lunch sack critters!

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 3 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      Love the lunch bag critters! The memory box is also nice. Great job! Pinned!

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Beautiful hub! I love the photos, especially the lunch sacks. Well done. Congrats on HOTD!

    • purl3agony profile image

      Donna Herron 3 years ago from USA

      Hi Heather! Congrats on your HOTD! Have a great day!!

    • CraftytotheCore profile image

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Nicely done! Congrats on your Hub of the Day! Happy Valentine's Day!

    • prestonandkate profile image

      Preston and Kate 3 years ago from the Midwest

      Congratulations on Hub of the Day! You have some magnificent crafty skills. -Kate

    • VVanNess profile image

      Victoria Van Ness 3 years ago from Prescott Valley

      Congrats on the Hub of the Day! This is just beautiful! Nice job Heather!

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 3 years ago from Western NC

      Beautiful hub! Lovely photos and Happy Valentine's Day! Congrats on HOTD, too!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      Congratulations on HOTD for these delightful crafts. Makes me wish I was a school kid again. Voted up +++ and pinning.

    • swilliams profile image

      Emunah La Paz 3 years ago from Arizona

      Very well done! Your crafts are amazing. Great Article. I know my art would not turn out as nice however it's nice but I can dream. Thanks!

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Glimmer Twin Fan 3 years ago

      Congrats on your HOTD! I love this, especially since I am helping out with my daughter's Valentine's Day party at school today. Fun crafts.

    • Better Yourself profile image

      Better Yourself 3 years ago from North Carolina

      Love these Vday craft ideas, especially the lunch sack critters!! Think it's too late for this year but will have to make use of this next year. Great hub, voted up!

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 3 years ago from the short journey

      Congrats on your Hub of the Day award for these nice crafts for kids!

    • poetryman6969 profile image

      poetryman6969 3 years ago

      Ah the giving and receiving of candy hearts.

    • JoanCA profile image

      JoanCA 4 years ago

      I love these ideas. My kids love making puppets with brown paper bags.

    • dwachira profile image

      [ Danson Wachira ] 4 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Very creative ideas for bringing that creativity in our kids. I will sure try some of these ideas with my young boy, thanks. Voted up and useful.

    • bridalletter profile image

      Brenda Kyle 4 years ago from Blue Springs, Missouri, USA

      Makes me want to make valentines. Great ideas. Sharing on pinterest on DIY board. Thank you for sharing some sweet ideas.

    • donnah75 profile image

      Donna Hilbrandt 4 years ago from Upstate New York

      Awesome ideas! I have some elementary school teacher friends who will love this. Shared and pinned.

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