Handmade cards – simple Valentine’s Day card

Valentine’s Day is coming up fast, and although Tom and I don’t really celebrate it at all sometimes I do like to make him a card. This is an idea for a card I had a few years ago:

Simple valentine's day card with flatback gems

This card is very simple and quick to make and uses flat-back gemstones. I’ve seen these in a range of craft stores, and I quite like Anita’s Gemstone Wheel which has a nice range of colours and separates them out nicely. The first flat-back gemstones I bought were mixed in a bag and it took forever to find the colours I wanted out of the bag!

Feel free to play with the design – use different words, a different layout (the heart in the corner of the card might look quite effective) or a different shape that means something to you and your Valentine.

What you need:

  • Flat-back gemstones (the ones I use here are 2mm in diameter)
  • PVA glue
  • Card blank (I am using a C6 card blank which folds to make an A6 card)
  • Tweezers
  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Coloured pen
  • Sharp pointy object

1. Use the pencil to draw your shape on the paper, or print out a shape onto the paper instead. I made the heart about 2.5cm in width but play around until you find a size that works for your design.

Printed heart shape

2. Place the gemstones onto the outline of the shape to check spacing. Put the gemstones you are not using back into their box/bag (otherwise you are likely to knock them everywhere… I say this from experience!).

Gemstone spacing on paper

3. As you remove each gemstone, make a mark with the pencil so you know where it was on the shape.

Gemstone positions

4. Place the paper over your card blank so that the shape is where you want it to be on the card. I chose to make mine central horizontally, and the same distance from the top of the card as from the sides. This left room below the heart to write my message. Using a sharp pointy object, press on the points where you want your gemstones to be (where the pencil lines cross the shape outline). I used the corner of my tweezers for this. You will be left with a series of indents in the card. I rested the card on a cutting mat when making my indents, because it is a little bit soft which helps to make the indents deeper and easier to see. If you can’t see your indents very well, draw a little dot with the pencil where each indent is.

Gemstone position indents

5. Place a small drop of PVA glue on the first few indents. I use Anita’s Tacky Glue which comes in a bottle with a nice point which makes it easier to make the small blobs of glue. Make your blobs approximately the same size as the gemstones. I prefer to use too much glue than too little, as some of the gemstones have fallen off in the past and the glue dries clear so it doesn’t show too much.

Blobs of glue for the gemstones

6. Using your tweezers, pick up the gemstones one at a time and place them onto the glue blobs. Push down a little and if necessary nudge the gemstones with the tweezers to get them in the right position.

Sticking the gemstones to the card

7. Continue to add blobs of glue and attach gemstones until you are finished. It is better to do a few at a time otherwise the glue might dry before you have had time to add all the gemstones.

Flat-back gemstone heart

8. I chose to write a short sentiment under the heart in gold pen. I think if I did it again I would leave a bigger gap between the heart and the writing, which I think would look better.

Flat-back gemstone heart with sentiment

And there is your finished card! Be sure to let the glue dry completely before writing and posting it.

Simple valentine's day card with flatback gems

If the card is going in the post, I usually put a piece of card (from a cereal box or similar) over the front of the card in the envelope, which helps to protect the gemstones. I write ‘packaging’ on the piece of card so the recipient knows what it’s for!

I hope this has inspired you to make a card of your own. Please let me know in the comments or by email how it went!

Also, if anyone would like this card to give to someone dear on Valentine’s Day, just let me know and I’ll send it over :)

Thanks for reading!


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