DIY Valentines for Kids

Colorful Cardboard Hearts – DIY Valentines for Kids


Paint and decorate cardboard hearts in this open-ended process art activity for Valentine’s Day. These DIY Valentines for kids are so simple and easy to create! Project and post by Rachel Withers, Editorial Coordinator at The Artful Parent. 

Cardboard DIY Valentines for Kids

Hi! My name is Rachel Withers & I’m the editorial coordinator here at The Artful Parent. I’m so excited to share these easy process art valentines that my son & I made together.

We recently moved to a new home and it felt good to start creating together again in our new space. Since we just moved, we are currently overflowing with cardboard! Fortunately, there are so many creative ideas how to reuse it for art!

I’ve loved making valentines since I was in elementary school so this was a fun new tradition to start with my son.

Cardboard heart – DIY Valentines for Kids

I recently bought some Mala squeeze paint from IKEA after reading good things about it. We chose the fluorescent paint and it provided bright, beautiful coverage on the cardboard. If you’ve never tried this paint, I think you’ll like it! But certainly any acrylic or tempera paint will work!

Cardboard Hearts – DIY Valentines for Kids

Materials for DIY Valentines for Kids


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Boy painting cardboard for homemade valentines

1. Paint cardboard

This was a two day project for us. The first day my son happily squeezed (a lot of) Mala paint onto pieces of cardboard.

Boy painting cardboard for DIY Valentines for Kids

Because there was so much paint, we put some of the pieces together with the blotto (or smush painting) technique–  (pat pat pat–WOW!).

My son (who is almost 3) is wild about blotto prints ever since doing a project at our toddler art group last year. This was a fun way to get beautiful swirls and blending of colors.

Painted cardboard and scissors for DIY Valentines for Kids

2. Cut heart shapes

After letting our cardboard dry, we came back to this project a few days later. I cut the cardboard into heart shapes and we talked about giving these valentines to our friends & family.

Boy gluing cardboard heart valentine

3. Decorate the valentines!

This is the fun part! Use whatever you have lying around the house–pom poms, glitter, ribbons, sequins, googly eyes, feathers–any of these will work great to add to the valentines.

Boy sprinkling glitter on DIY Valentines for Kids

Then grab a bottle of glue and let your little (or big) kid squeeze away.

Glueing & glittering cardboard diy heart valentines

We ended up with quite a lot of glue sitting on the cardboard (similar to our paint situation). All the more opportunity for decorating.

Boy adding pom pom to cardboard heart valentine

We had some pom poms I picked up from Target’s Valentine’s Day section that I was waiting to use. That and some glitter added a nice final touch to the cardboard hearts.

Decorated cardboard diy heart valentines

4. Give homemade valentines

Homemade valentines take a  little extra time but are so worth it and the process is so fun for kids (& adults)! If you’re like me with small kids, you just have to start extra early!

I hope you enjoy trying your own variation of these easy DIY valentines for kids. Follow along with me on Instagram for more process art ideas for toddlers!

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Paint and decorate cardboard hearts in this open-ended process art activity for Valentine's Day. These DIY Valentines for kids are so simple and easy to create! #kidscraft #cardboard #recycledcraft #upcycled #artsandcrafts #valentines #toddlers #preschoolers #creativehome

Colorful Cardboard Hearts – DIY Valentines for Kids

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