Melted Crayon Stained Glass Hearts for Valentines Day

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First off, I want to say that we really did get outside yesterday. We spent the morning with friends at a fun new playground. And good thing too, because now it is cold and windy!

Hearts for Valentines Day

Hearts for Valentines Day

But after nap, Maia and I went back to the studio and made these lovely stained glass hearts. You’ve probably been thinking that I’m getting too Martha Stewart with all these holiday decorations. Well this one actually is from Martha Stewart. What can I say? She has some beautiful ideas. I started off planning to making heart frames for them with construction paper or just tape the hearts to the window as I’ve done with stars, but then I came across this on her site and fell in love.

Hearts for Valentines Day

As prep, I grated some old chunky crayons and put them into three bowls—one each for pink, orange, and red. I would have grated a white crayon or two but I couldn’t find any.

Then I folded some sheets of wax paper in half.

Maia took a piece of wax paper, opened it up, sprinkled grated crayon bits (sometimes too liberally) on one side, and folded it back up. She’s a pro at this since we’ve made crayon “stained glass” windows a few times now.

Hearts for Valentines Day

I did the ironing part, with Maia watching and checking up on the progress. I keep the iron on low—I use the silk setting—and always sandwich the wax paper between a couple sheets of newsprint or other paper since the waxy stuff bleeds through somewhat.

Hearts for Valentines Day

Afterward, I drew hearts on the wax paper, and we both cut them out. Maia punched a hole in each with our hole punch—her new favorite tool—and I hung them up with white thread in our living room window.

Hearts for Valentines Day

Aren’t these stained glass hearts beautiful? I love them. I wish my photo skills were up to par. I keep meaning to read the manual for my camera, but manuals don’t like me much, and now I can’t even find it. I’d like to be able to get it off auto focus and be able to focus on something close up and let the background be blurry. Any tips?

By the way, in case you want more fun kids crafts for Valentines Day, I was interviewed for a “Make Your Own Valentine Cards” article in our local Mountain Xpress. It’s online here, and in print on page 31 (Edgy Mama‘s column) for those of you in the Asheville area.

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  1. says

    We did these last year (thanks to Martha) and we are enjoying them again this year because they held up so well. Very pretty! And nice article, too.

  2. says

    I like Martha for crafty stuff and cooking. She has such wonderful ideas, and lots of good things for kids. It’s also neat to see just how much our little ones can do on their own with a little help. I really like the look of those hearts in the window.
    I’m not sure what kind of camera you have, but you might try putting it on the “p” setting or “m” (usually there is a dial on the top with different settings.) Then you might get a smaller focus square in your viewfinder. If you press the button down part way, it should focus on what is in the square. Some cameras have settings that give you multiple focusing squares in the viewfinder; that function is somewhere in the menu.
    If you’re really close to something like a flower or want to see details of a craft project, you might check to see if you have a macro setting on your dial. It usually looks like a flower on the dial. This tells the camera to focus up close. Depending on the camera you might have to mess around with how close you hold the camera to the object; each of my cameras lets me hold it different distances from the object before it no longer focuses.
    I hope this makes sense, and that you can figure it out. You might also be able to search online for users groups for your camera. You can often post questions there. You might even be able to find some kind of online manual.
    Good luck! Keep posting!!

  3. Mary says

    Oooh! Pretty! Definitely gonna do these!
    The Pioneer Woman has great photography tips for the beginner at her blog:
    I know she’s addressed the very question you’re asking, so it’s worth checking out. Do a search or just check her photography archives, and I’ll bet you’ll find what you’re looking for. She also has great recipes in her cooking section.
    So glad to see you back, BTW. I really enjoy your blog!

  4. Heather says

    You inspired us to do a v-day craft yesterday and so going to be grating crayons tomorrow! What kind of camera do you have? dSLR it’s generally the lens you’re using, or otherwise making good use of the macro setting on a point and shoot. Can also me ‘faked’ in photoshop w/ layers of gaussian blur. Wish we were closer—I’d trade photog lessons for kid studio time! :-)
    We’re getting blown away by the wind today too!

  5. says

    I could definitely use the photo lessons! Too bad we’re not closer. I would definitely trade for kid studio time. I wish I had a fancy digital SLR but I just have a digital point and shoot (and still can’t master it!). It’s a Canon PowerShot SD880 IS. Maybe I’ll look into photoshop…

  6. says

    How beautiful! thanks so much for sharing all this wonderful art/craft projects with us, forget about reading the camera manual, your pictures are good :) thanks so much

  7. Margaret K says

    Hi Jean. I am new to your great blog. I have a request. I am always looking for ideas for how to design our kids’ play room with art and creativity in mind. I would love a photo gallery of your play and creative spaces to see ways you display art, store materials, protect floors, etc. Your home is beautiful and simple and I’ve seen great ideas already in your pictures, but I’d love to see more. Thanks.

  8. says

    I have a similar canon sd camera. To focus close-up put the dial on M (for manual) and then find the tulip-shaped icon. I like this project. Maia made so many and the quantity seems to be what makes this window display so beautiful!

  9. says

    Thanks for all the camera recommendations! I’ll have to play around with mine a little, I guess. I’ve used the macro setting, but sometimes it still seems to keep everything else (even for away) in focus. Maybe I’m just not doing it right. I’ll keep trying. And I’ll have to check out The Pioneer Woman photo tips. Thanks!
    Margaret – Sure. I’ll try to take some pics of our art and play spaces. You’ll probably find a bunch of photos in the archives, but maybe I’ll do a post just of the various spaces sometime soon.

  10. Amy B. says

    Jean, we did these yesterday and they are beautiful, though tying each one with a thread was nearly too tedious for me! I’ve been enjoying re-reading your “top art materials” post and wondered if you might do a similar round-up post for favorite books, art material recipes, etc. I know you’ve mentioned them in various posts but it would be great to bring them together and I am sure those kinds of posts are super popular.

  11. says

    These look fantastic! And I love that the process is so fun and easy. I will definitely have to try this with my 2 yo. We’ve got a lot of broken crayons scattered around.
    I also really love your papel picado! I checked that book out from our library after seeing it in your previous post. I’m anxious to try it myself, and I think my son will at least enjoy the finished products!

  12. Amanda L. says

    I love these hearts! We missed the boat for Valentine’s Day, but maybe will do something for Easter.
    Regarding the camera, I’m learning too, and have found the Digital Photography School website very helpful. ( To get the background fuzzy, you’ll want to set the camera dial to “A” (Aperture Priority Mode). Then on your screen you should see an “f” and a number. Use your arrow buttons to select the smallest “f” number (my camera only goes down to f/3.2; better cameras will go down to f/1.4 or lower). I’ve found that on my camera this works best if there is some distance between what I’m focusing on and the background; stuff that is directly behind my subject is still in focus, but my understanding is that it’s because my camera will only go down to f/3.2. Hope this helps!

  13. says

    found your blog a little while ago and love the inspiring projects!
    was going to give some camera tips, but seems that a lot of people have already covered most of the bases, so instead i will just say hi. haha. maybe next time. =)