Come out and say "Happy Valentine's Day!" with a homemade pop-up Valentine. Not only are these matchbox cards easy to make, they also serve as endearing keepsakes. And your main squeeze will love getting a pop-up surprise when pulling out the tiny drawer of the Valentine.
Things You'll Need
- Empty matchboxes, 1 3/8 inches by 2 1/2 inches
- Decorative paper
- Craft knife and cutting mat
- Hot glue gun
- Sewing pin with a round plastic tip
- Wire clippers
- White printer paper
- Heart cutouts (or other scrapbook embellishments)
- Small coil springs, 3/16 inches by 1 inch (or take from ballpoint pens)
Make Paper Strips for the Drawer
Choose two contrasting paper colors/patterns to cover the matchbox drawer. Using a crafting knife, ruler and cutting mat, trim a long strip of paper that is the same width as the matchbox drawer. Use a different paper color or pattern and trim a long strip that is the same length as the matchbox drawer. The paper strips should both be at least 6 inches in length.
Secure the Paper Strip to the Drawer
Flip the paper for the outside of the box right-side down. Use a few small dabs of hot glue to tack down one end of a decorative paper strip onto the inside long edge of the matchbox drawer.
Cover the Drawer With One Strip
Wrap the paper strip all the way around the matchbox drawer, creasing at the corners as you wrap so the paper folds neatly against the walls of the drawer. Use small dabs of hot glue to secure the paper to the matchbox drawer as you go. Trim off any excess paper.
Cover the Drawer With Another Strip
Take the other paper strip, tack it down with glue inside the matchbox drawer, and wrap, crease and glue it in the opposite direction (as in steps 2 and 3 above). Trim off any excess paper.
Loosen the Lid
Next, place the covered matchbox drawer inside the matchbox lid to test whether it slides easily. If it is tight, you can unhinge the seam of the lid (using a craft knife) loosen it and reseal it with hot glue. If it isn't tight, simply leave the lid as-is.
Make a Paper Strip for the Lid
Cut a long strip of decorative paper that matches the length of the matchbox lid. The strip of paper should be at least 6 inches long.
Cover the Lid
Turn the paper right-side down. Secure the paper to the bottom of the matchbox lid with a few small dabs of hot glue, and wrap the paper around the lid, creasing it at the corners and using small dabs of hot glue to secure as you go.
Add a Drawer Pull
Next, poke a small hole in the front center of the matchbox drawer with a sewing pin. Remove the pin and trim the round tip off the pin with wire clippers, leaving about 1/16 inch of wire attached to the tip. Insert the pin tip back into the hole in the matchbox, and use a small dab of hot glue to secure it in place on the inside flap.
Make the Pop-Up Message
Cut a little flag out of white printer paper measuring about 1 inch long and 1/2 inch wide. Write a simple Valentine message on it. You could also print the message out first using an 8- to 10-point font. Use a dab of hot glue to secure the flag to one side of a heart cutout (or other scrapbook embellishment).
Make the Pop-Up Spring
Use wire clippers to trim a small coil spring to 1 inch long, or use a small spring taken from an old pen.
Secure the Pop-Up Message to the Spring
Secure the spring to the back tip of the heart cutout with a dab of hot glue. If you're using a small pen spring, glue the very tip of the spring to the very end tip of the heart.
Secure the Spring to the Matchbox
Place the bottom of the spring on the bottom of the matchbox drawer, centered toward the front of the drawer near the drawer pull, and secure it with hot glue. Allow the glue to dry for one minute before putting the drawer into the matchbox.
Assemble the Matchbox Pop-Ups
Slide the matchbox drawer back into the lid, and carefully tuck the heart and message down into the drawer and close. The message will spring out when opened.