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Make Your Sweet Heart Blush With A Homemade Valentine Heart

painting heartShower your Sweetheart with a handmade paper mache heart this Valentine. 

Paper Mache Homemade Valentine Hearts

Before you begin your paper mache clay sculpture watch the "How 2 Youtube video" showing you exactly how I created my Valentine Heart you see here. This is super easy first piece, and one that everyone can enjoy.
Here is a quick list of materials.
Recycled Newspaper
Masking Tape
 Utility Knife or scissors
Plastic bags
Paints and Paint Brushes
Poly acrylic Varnish
H20 and Rags

1 Creating Your Armature
box cutting templateIn sculpture, an armature is a framework around which the sculpture is built.
Let's Get Started
To create a armature you will draw your heart onto a salvaged card board box and cut out the heart shape out. Use scissors or a utility knife, but the knife needs to be sharp to cut through, be careful.
"I always cut 2 of everything and now I have quite a stash of templates."
Your cardboard cutout is the basic shape you will build around.
First tape a plastic bag to your heart cut out, stretch it tight on one side, leaving the other side with extra bag to stuff with paper.
stuff heartBy crumpling up and stuffing newspaper in your bag you will fill out one side of the cardboard slowly creating a full heart shape.  This will be a process of adding stuffing where it is needed.
I fill out the top of my heart and narrow as I go toward the bottom.
Just work the newspaper and add lots of tape for a smooth surface to apply your strips.
Valentines Video 
The first steps you take to create your armature will determine how much work you will have later so take as long as you need.
The heart is so easy and inexpensive, I love that.
Here I also add a copper wire hanger to the back by cutting to slits and inserting my copper. You can use a large ribbon, tie a knot in the ribbon after you insert it for a good hold.
2 PaPer MaChe Your Heart Armature
paper strip heartNow you are ready to cover your armature with paper mache strips dipped in our homemade paper mache paste. You will need to apply four layers of newspaper strips over the armature. After applying the strips you will set your armature aside and let it dry over night. We will be apply many more layers in the morning.
You'll love them for their simplicity and organic look.
I would add 20 or more layers to the armature for an unbreakable heart. However many layers you add to your armature, you must let it completely dry, I'll say it again, completely dry before applying any primer.
Drying all those layers of newsprint strips will probably take more than 24 hours, just depends on your weather outside.
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3 Sanding and Priming Your Heart Sculpture
Lightly sand your heart and then wipe it clean with a dry rag.
Oh, I should say here to work outside or in a ventilated room if you do much sanding on your paper mache armature. Just remember safety first in all you do.
I like to prime all pieces before adding acrylic paints. So you are going to paint gesso all over the heart, front and back letting the Gesso primer dry completely.
 If need I will lightly sand my heart again.

Valentines Finishing Touches

4 Painting and Varnishing Your Valentines Heart
This is fun stuff.
homemade valentines heartOf, course paint your heart however you choose, it will be lovely.
I choose to paint the homemade heart for our Senior's Living Home, and wanted to give them something they could have up all year long.
When I began ripping my newsprint into strips I came across this beautiful painting of flowers and center my theme around it. However the heart I am creating for our home will be hot red and swirls of pink.
Now that you have decided your colors, paint your heart and set it aside to dry, overnight works well for me.
After it is dry you will now add the finishing protective coat of Poly Acrylic Varnish. You can pick up Poly Acrylic in gloss or satin finish. I add several layers of varnish to each of my pieces and this takes several hours between layers to dry.
Last Step Is Sharing Your Big Valentine Heart
There are a couple of ways that you can share your heart this Valentines Day. The very best way to share is posting a picture at WhimsyPaperMache on Facebook, where we send virtual hugs.  Post Valentine Heart
Happy Valentine's Day
from Our Family to Yours.
Art Wrap Up
If you have any questions or comments concerning the steps I used to create my Valentine Heart, post them on our Facebook page and I will gladly give it a try.
my valentine snowflakeSubscribe to our YouTube Channel/WhimsyMacheGirl for up to date DIY paper mache videos, from the Whimsy's Place Online.
While working on this Paper Mache Heart, my precious little canine family member Snowflake past away, I dedicate my Valentine Heart to her amazing spirit and the love she brought to our family.
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