Introduction: Heart-shaped Time Capsule

Forty years ago, the famous pop artist Andy Warhol, sealed 300,000 of his everyday possessions into cardboard boxes. He called these boxes “time capsules”, fragments of the artist’s life evocating memories and places.

Everyone wants to keep track of life and remember happy moments or resolutions, once in a while. In this instructable, I will explain how to create a display case-like time capsule that displays a specific moment of our life. It is demonstrated that by investing your time taking your dreams seriously, you will love your life.

We will use paper mache to build an anatomical reproduction of a heart. We will draw a map of our feelings and wishes. We will embed everything in our masterpiece time capsule. This heart time capsule will remember you every day to take care of your soul.



- a jar

- a matchbox

- a balloon

- Paper scotch tape

- vinyl glue

- newspaper

- scissors

- acrylic paint

- brush

- water

- hot glue

- cardboard

- silver paper

Step 1: Build the Heart

- Inflate a balloon as much as it fits into the jar. Be sure that the balloon has an olive-like shape to resemble a real heart.

- Cut the matchbox and adjust the size to make it fit into the jar lid. With the paper scotch tape join the two sides of the matchbox like in the figure.

- Create a tube of silver paper to make the aorta (the large artery which makes an arch on the top of our hearts, highlighted in yellow in the following picture). Put the silver paper tube on the top of the balloon with paper scotch tape.

- Make at least 4 layers of newspaper. Do the same with the matchbox. Cover also a small piece of cardboard with newspaper (a couple of layers will be enough). Let it dry for 1 night.

- Break the balloon and remove it from the heart. Paint with white color everything and let it dry for a couple of hours.

Step 2: Brainstorm

Now it’s time to create a heart-shaped map of your strengths, ambitions, and experiences.

You can use the templates for the front and the back of the heart
and as many colors as you want. Now switch off all the devices and go to a quiet place and focus on your emotions. Brainstorm about your feelings. Ask yourself questions like:

- what was my bigger dream as a child

- what is my priority today

- where do I see myself in 5 years

Follow the flow and write down all the answers on a piece of paper. Brainstorm, as long as you want. In the end you will have to choose 2 strengths, 2 goals and 2 soul food that make you happy you every day.

Here is my top 6:


- playing paddle tennis;

- programming;


- become a scientific illustrator;

- run my science lab;


- walking in Rome;

- visiting botanical gardens.

Now put everything on your heart map. You don’t need to be precise. Just keep it simple, the less you put, the more you will be able to focus. I’ll show you my map as an example.

Step 3: Paint and Decorate

- Now it’s time to transfer the map on your heart. You can trace lines defining different areas to help you during painting.

- While the color is drying prepare the tags. Take an old newspaper and cut words related to you 6 ideas of the maps. Glue the words on cardboard to create your tags.

- Prepare also a tag with the date to put it on the pedestal.

- With hot glue, glue the tags on the heart and the heart on the pedestal. Glue the pedestal on the jar lid.

- Here is your time capsule!

- Make a new time capsule any time your heart needs it. Enjoy!!

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