Cute, fun, vintage goodness
It is a good thing I ran out of pipe cleaners. If that had not happened, I don’t know if I ever would have stopped making these adorable Valentine ornaments.
What’s more, these fun Valentine’s Day crafts are easy to make and use simple materials like paper bags and pipe cleaners.
Tutorial to make vintage Valentine ornaments
How to make the pipe cleaner bodies
Make your pipe cleaner figures. For each figure you will need one or two chenille pipe cleaners with bumps and one regular pipe cleaner. Cut a three-bump chenille pipe cleaner so that two bumps are in one section and a single bump is separate. Repeat for the second pipe cleaner.
Fold both two-bump sections of the pipe cleaners in half to form V shapes. Holding one V section downward, to create the legs, twist the second V around the top of the leg section a few times to create the arms.
Shape a regular (non-bumpy) pipe cleaner into an oval, with a stem. Twist the stem around the body, where the arms and legs intersect. This creates the halo/hanger that will support your Valentine’s head.
Bend the feet and hands upward.
There’s more than one way to make figures out of pipe cleaners. Feel free to play around and find a style that you like. For example, by using just a one-bump section for the arms, you can use fewer pipe cleaners and have shorter arms. .
How to make the Valentine puppy with pleated skirt
Make the pipe cleaner figure as described above. Then, create the shirt by slicing open a Pink Frosting Bitty Bag from Whisker Graphics. Cut out a long rectangle and fold it in half so that the printed side faces out on both sides.
Use a decorative scissors to cut the bottom edge. Cut a small scoop out of the top for the neck and cut apart so that there are two sides of the shirt. Hot glue the front of the shirt to the body. Flip over and lining up edges, glue the back piece of shirt in place.
To make the skirt, cut a circle from a light pink Polka Dot Middy Bitty Bag. Next, cut out a triangle from it so that it looks like Pac Man. That is, if you are old enough to remember Pac Man.
Wave goodbye to Pac Man and cut a small circle at the apex of the triangle.
Score lines in the skirt to create the pleats. Do this carefully so that you don’t rip the paper. Fan-fold at the score lines. Slide the pipe cleaner body into this circle. Wrap the skirt around the body of the Valentine, below the shirt. and glue in place in back. Add a decorative pipe cleaner around the waist.
Fussy cut a head from a vintage valentine. You can find links to many vintage valentines on my Pinterest page. Adhere the head to the base of the halo/hanger. Fussy cut an envelope from a vintage valentine and adhere to one of the hands. Add stickers or other decorations to complete your figure.
How to make the Valentine puppy with pleated collar
After creating the pipe cleaner figure described above, cut open a Red Polka Dot Little Bitty Bag. Slice off the end seam and fold. and cut the paper so that you have two rectangles. Trim one long side of each rectangle with a decorative scissor.
Score a vertical line every 1/4 inch on both rectangles and fan-fold the strip. Glue the two sections together. Spread the strip into the shape of a fan and add a dab of hot glue to the center.
Next, hot glue one end of the strip to the bottom edge of your pipe cleaner figure hanger. Spread the fan apart and glue the opposite edge to the other side of the hanger.
Make the pants by cutting a White Kraft Little Bitty Bag vertically in half. Trim both ends to create leg openings.
Fussy cut two red zig-zag strips from a Chevron Little Bitty Bag. Adhere them to the bottom of each pant leg. Slide one pant leg over each of your figure’s legs, gather at the waist (behind the collar) and hot glue in place.
Fussy cut a head from a vintage valentine and adhere over the top of the collar. Fussy cut an envelope from a vintage valentine, add additional decorations and glue to one of the hands.
How to make the Valentine bird with dress
Again, create a pipe cleaner figure. Then make a skirt by cutting a circle from a Horizontal Stripe Middy Bitty Bag. Like you did with the pleated skirt, cut out a triangle from the circle and then cut a small circle e at the apex of the triangle. Slide the pipe cleaner body into this circle. Wrap the skirt around the pipe cleaner and glue together.
Make the top of the dress by cutting a Scrolly Square Label vertically in half.
Adhere a Chick Petite Sticky to one of the halves. Hot glue the piece of label with the Chick Petite Sticky to the front of the pipe cleaner figure, above the skirt. Flip over and lining up edges, glue the back piece in place. Trim the top of the Chick Petite Sticky to match the top edge of the Scrolly Square Label.
Fussy cut a head from a vintage valentine and adhere to the hanger. Add a tinsel pipe cleaner and fabric flower to make a headband and adhere a decorative valentine to one of the hands.
I hope you have as much fun making these as I did. If you run out of time before Valentine’s Day, you can easily change up the color and decoration schemes and make spring ornaments instead.
Stuff I used
- Pink Frosting Bitty Bag
- Red Polka Dot Little Bitty Bag
- Chevron Little Bitty Bag
- White Kraft Little Bitty Bag
- Horizontal Stripe Middy Bitty Bag
- Light Pink Polka Dot Middy Bitty Bag
- Scrolly Square Label
- Chick Petite Sticky
- Chenille bumpy pipe cleaners
- Tinsel pipe cleaners
- Vintage valentine images
- Valentine doo dads
- Hot glue gun
- Vinyl glue
- Decorative scissors