Wild Valentines (Free Printable!)
Originally published in 2017 on my original website, it was archived until a kind soul found it on pinterest and reminded me I didn’t have it on my current site!
Looking for ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day without the sugar rush? The gorgeous book, Finding Wild by Megan Wagner Lloyd and illustrated by Abigail Halpin, inspired us to spread some wild of our own during this season of love.
I’d seen homemade seed paper floating around Pinterest for a while now, and I thought this would be the perfect time to try it out! This was my first foray into paper-making, and I was surprised at how easy the process was. It takes some patience, but the final results are well worth the wait!
1. Find and shred about 10 sheets of paper into a big bowl (such a great way to use up those pesky scraps!)
This was by far the most exciting part for my kids. Who doesn’t love getting the green light to be a little destructive? We used a few sheets of green, some white, and even a little yellow.
2. Add 2 cups of water and mix gently until all paper is soaked.
My two year old loves to stir, so we stirred this mixture for quite some time. Totally unnecessary. Unless you have a two year old who needs occupied. Then stir away!
3. Let soak for at least an hour
4. Blend it up! Use a blender or a food processor until your scraps of paper transform into a fine pulp. I added a bit more water here to help the blades get going, but you might not have to.
5. Stir in your seeds (sometimes it’s hard to get pictures of the process when you’re working with a two and five year old…)
6. Spread and dry
If you’re a paper making pro, you might have a mesh screen to use for the drying process. I improvised with a cookie sheet lined with a few layers of paper towel. Spread a thin layer onto the paper towels, roll as flat as possible, and top with a kitchen towel. I then weighed the whole thing down with another cookie sheet on top. And a heavy book on top of that. We work with what we’ve got around here!
7. Wait wait wait
I changed out the top towels a few times as they became soaked with water.
8. Transfer to a wire rack and wait some more
9. Get tired of waiting and try a hair dryer
10. Give up on the hair dryer and wait some more
11. When your paper is finally dry, trace your desired shapes and cut! (I realize now that a more realistic expectation would be that this is a multi-day project. You live, you learn I guess.)
We taped our seed hearts to these sweet printouts for my son’s preschool class. If you’re interested, you can print your own by downloading the pdf below!
Have fun spreading wild this Valentine’s Day!