How long have people been exchanging valentines? A long time, it turns out! After doing a bit of reading, we found that people have been giving presents (especially gloves) to their sweethearts as early as the seventeenth century. Along with real gloves, lovers would give their significant others paper hand cut-outs with hearts woven into them as tokens of their love.
These hand and heart love tokens were so popular that by the nineteenth century, they were everywhere. They were paired with sweet little hand-written notes that said things like, “hand and heart shall never part,” and “when this you see, remember me.” We discovered these delicate little valentines earlier this year and instantly fell in love. We made our own versions, and it turns out they’re still the perfect heartfelt and sentimental gift for your S.O. this Valentine’s Day! After all these years, introducing our very own hand and heart love tokens.
A Plug for Handmade Valentines
We swooned when we saw the designs our designer, Garet, made for our hand and heart love tokens. They’re the perfect blend of classic and timeless with a modern twist. I mean the colors?! And those delicate details?! We were instantly captivated, not to mention thrilled.
One of the best things about them is the handmade quality the woven elements give them. I think we can all agree that there’s something extra meaningful about giving and receiving handmade gifts, especially ones that took some time. Ever met someone who almost instantly throws away cards for all occasions? My dad is one of them. He reads the cards, says how nice they are, then throws them straight into the trash. He’s not trying to be insensitive, he’s just practical, and they do start building up. But I would be willing to bet that if he received a valentine as lovely as one of these heart and hand love tokens, he wouldn’t be so quick to discard it. Maybe he’d even frame it.
How to Make a Hand and Heart Love Token
We’re obsessed with these oh so romantic hand and heart love tokens. We think you will be too, once you make a few for yourself. For how lovely they look, they’re almost too simple to believe it. Here’s how to do it!
Prepping the Paper
- First of all, you’ll need your best friend, the handy Cricut Maker. I can’t tell you how much of a difference having one of these babies makes when attempting to cut so many meticulous lines with precision.
- Using your Cricut Maker, cut out the hand and heart templates, found in our shop. See our templates for the colors of paper we used.
- Once the pieces are cut out, you may need to use your craft knife to pop the paper pieces out and touch up the cutting job, if your paper is a bit thicker.
As a note, the green and yellow hearts are meant to be mixed and matched. The pink and red hands both have wrist inserts that can also be switched.
Weaving the Hearts
Now you’re ready to weave your heart and hand love tokens together! Make sure to reference our step photos, as visualizing can help with the weaving.
- First, we’ll explain how to weave the heart into the hand. To do this, position the heart so the point is towards the bottom of the hand and the cuts are going opposite directions.
- Now, starting from the bottom, poke the points that face down (the heart) in behind the points that face up (the hand). Gently ease them down as far as you can without ripping the paper.
- Once they’re in place, you’re ready to weave the points down the opposite direction.
- To do this, gently tuck the hand’s points in behind the heart’s points, so you get a neat little diamond with each tuck.
- It’s secure, now, and should stay in place. You’re done weaving the heart!
Weaving the Wrists
- To weave the checkerboard wrist pattern, take the first narrow strip of paper and weave over and under the strips on the hand’s wrist.
- With the next strip, alternate, starting over if you started under with the first, and vice versa.
- When starting each new strip, alternate the weaving so you get a nice checkerboard pattern.
- For the woven heart wrist, simply use the same technique as for the checkerboard, but just do it once.
Your hand and heart love tokens are complete!
If you loved this tutorial on how to make your own hand and heart love tokens, we’re guessing you’re in the mood for more Valentine’s Day content. Here’s a lovely little painted valentine box you can make to put your own valentines in. If you want more valentine ideas to give, we have a whole host of lovely valentines designed by some of our favorite Lars print shop artists. Want some valentines you can make yourself for love day? Try these easy DIY valentines. Or are you here looking for Valentine’s Day gift ideas for your significant other? Then head to our Valentine’s Day Gift Guide for Women, and stay tuned for our Valentine’s Day gift guide for men.