I <3 Valentine's Day for several reasons: It's a fun, relatively effortless holiday that breaks up the cold winter months of the beginning of the year. It's a reason to dress yourself and your home in happy shades of pinks and reds. It's a reminder to stop and take a moment to show the people special to you how much you love them. And finally, it's a reason to try out a few new themed recipes or craft projects. 

I've been having a blast on Pinterest the last few weeks creating a Valentine's Inspiration board. In my quest for new ideas, I came across a brilliantly simple and inexpensive idea (from, of all places, a Girl Scouts idea swap board) -- making Valentine's Day bookmarks using paint chips. 

Supplies Needed:

  • Paint chips
  • Heart shaped paper punch
  • Circular hole punch
  • Ribbon

Luckily we already own a circular hole punch, but I needed the other three items on the list. I made a quick trip to my local home improvement store to pick up a wide array of paint chips in various Valentine's shades of reds, pinks, and plums. Not only are they beautiful...but they were free!

Next I made a stop at my local craft store to pick up ribbon in complementary shades of pink and red to use as the bookmark tassel. The cost -- only $.50 each!

Unfortunately the craft store was sold out of the heart shaped punch I was looking for. Much to my dismay, I could see where they should be on the shelf, but despite a sales clerk's best efforts rummaging through inventory boxes she still couldn't locate one. Not to worry, I was able to find what I was looking for online when I returned home -- I just had to wait two days before this important tool arrived. 

Note: Apparently these little punches are in high demand. The online craft store I ordered mine from is now sold out, but it looks like Amazon has them for a few dollars more.

Once I had everything I needed, I got to work. The first step is to carefully place the heart shaped punch in the dead center of each color on the paint chip. With firm, even pressure, push down on the punch to create a heart cutout. 

Here's what your paint chips will look like once the heart cutouts are completed.

After your heart punches are finished, using the circular hole punch, create a centered hole at the top of the paint chip for your ribbon tassel. 

Next up, cut pieces of ribbon twice as long as the desired length of your tassel. Fold the ribbon in half, and place the ends of the ribbon through the circular hole.

Insert the two ends of the ribbon through the loop.

As a final step, gently pull up on the ends of the ribbon until the ribbon is taut and secure.

For around $6, I was able to make a seemingly endless supply of bookmarks for friends and family. I'll even include them in the Valentine's cards I mail to my grandparents. Aren't they festive and pretty?

Taking the project a step further, you could get creative and use single color paint chips as vibrant gift tags or as customized place cards at your next dinner party. 

What are you doing to celebrate Valentine's Day this year? Cooking up a romantic dinner for your special someone? Hand making a card, gift or craft to show your sweetie how much you love them? Maybe baking up a batch of heart shaped cookies

On the subject of Valentine's Day, in case you missed it, check out our Valentine's cookie tutorial and don't forget tomorrow is the deadline to enter our contest to win a $50 shopping spree (online or in store) at local culinary store La Cuisine. We'll be announcing the winner on Wednesday. 

Comments 13


2/6/2012 at 10:04 AM
Very cute - I can see this with green or yellow chips and a flower or bunny cutout for Easter. Those little punches come in all types of shapes.
That would be so cute! What about shamrocks for St. Patty's day, stars for 4th of July, pumpkins for Halloween...

I need to stop! :-)
2/6/2012 at 11:08 AM
Oh!!! If you have any extra, can I snag one? I love this! Also, do you think that the hole punch is sharp enough to work on fabric?
Sure thing. I'm sure I'll have an extra one.

Hmm, not sure about fabric. Maybe if it were very thin fabric it might work.
2/6/2012 at 11:24 AM
I think you'd have to back it with something - maybe tack it to cardstock with that removeable glue? Or interface it with the stiffer type of ironon interfacing. The cutters are basically holepunches, so the fabric might tear rather than cut.

What might work for fabric are the rotary cutters with fancy edges like pinking shears make.
2/6/2012 at 9:57 PM
I am featuring this idea with a round up of valentine ideas. Thought I would let you know :) Lovely idea.
Thanks so much!
2/8/2012 at 11:34 AM
I love the idea of using these as gift tags!
1/20/2013 at 11:36 AM
Very cute! I'm going to make these for my co-workers...have you thought about laminating them?
I hadn't thought about laminating them, but that's a great idea! Thanks, Melissa. :-)
1/22/2015 at 11:30 AM

Where do you get the paint chips, besides depleting the paint section at the hardware store and then when someone is actually painting there are no more chips.


Hi Karen - Great question. Some paint companies will send you free chips if you request them through their website. I also save all my discarded chips from projects past and try to repurpose them whenever possible. If I don't have a color on hand from a past project, like hot pink, I'll pick up one or two chips of several different color options if I'm out shopping so I don't deplete the hardware store's on-hand selection.

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