I made a little box for Valentine's Day by layering and gluing a stack of paper hearts together, sanding it and applying a glossy coat. To make it extra special you can write your sweetie's name or a romantic phrase on the lid.
Step 1: Materials and Tools:
- Old magazines or catalogs
- Coloured paper; reds and pinks (paper with colour on both sides works the best)
- Heart punch (I used a 2 inch one)
- Dremel/ sandpaper
- Glue (the white stuff that dries clear - ie; Weldbond, Mod Podge)
- Small plastic container
- Brush for applying glue
Step 2: Punch Out Hearts
Punch out a ~2.5cm thick stack of red, pink and magazine or catalog paper hearts. Layer the paper hearts in an alternating pattern. Punch out two more smaller stacks about 0.5cm thick, for the lid and bottom piece.
Step 3: Preparing to Glue
Mix equal quantities of glue and water into a small container, enough to cover your stack of paper. To hold the paper stack together while dipping it into glue wrap an elastic band around it, try to line up all the paper hearts evenly.
Step 4: Glue Hearts Together
Immerse the stack of paper hearts. The gluey water should cover all parts of the heart. Wiggle the elastic band around so that it gets underneath and flip through the paper at the ends. Ideally the glue will find its way between the hearts. Drain and lie flat to dry, put something heavy on top to prevent the paper from warping . Repeat with the top and bottom pieces (separately). It may take a day or two to dry. To prevent them from sticking to the surface it is lying on, move it around every once and a while. If it does stick, and the paper tears, just punch out a new paper heart and glue it over the torn piece.
Step 5: Make Opening
I used a dremel to cut out a hole in the centre piece (2.5cm thick), then sanded the edges to make it smooth.
Alternatively if you had a smaller paper punch to make a shape that would fit inside the heart, you could just punch out the inner shape before you glue the paper stack together, you will still need to sand the opening to make it smooth.
Step 6: Glue on Bottom
Once the opening in the centre piece is finished you can glue the bottom piece on.
Step 7: Sand Edges
Use a Dremel or ordinary sandpaper to even out the edges of the heart. I gradually increased the grit to create a smooth finish.
I noticed that the vigor of sanding the heart caused some separation between the layers of paper around the edges. I applied glue with a brush into these cracks and but a heavy book on top while the glue dried.
Step 8: Add Lid
I placed the lid on and held the two pieces together while I sanded the lid so that it was even with the bottom piece. I then rounded the edges of the lid.
Step 9: Dust
All that sanding and cutting creates a lot of paper dust on the heart. I used a Dremel attachment that nicely cleaned all of it off. It is important to remove all of the dust before you do the next step.
Step 10: Gloss
Adding a coat of clear drying glue is a great way to protect the paper heart and give it a nice glossy finish. (If you want to write something on the lid, this is the time to do it.) Using a brush, liberally coat the heart, do the lid and base separately.