January 21, 2024

Kids' Valentine's Day Place Mat

SoJo and I embarked on a little crafting on Friday, with little mess (bonus points!).  As a preschooler, he's been clued in to holidays now, and since Valentine's Day is on the horizon, he's been asking about making Valentines for his classmates (making! Yes, how sweet! I'm such a proud art-mama).

While on a January organizing kick, I stumbled upon a paper bag of cut-out hearts that I made last year for a playdate party, and thought I'd invite him to make an easy place mat for the table.
The biggest challenge?  Explaining what a place mat is.  We don't really use them in our home, mostly since S would just toss them on the floor all the livelong day anyway.  And they're one more thing on the list of stuff to clean.
So using some clear contact paper, we got to work.  We pulled out a bunch of art supplies (some of which are for another project, which I'll post soon) to use.
Soren helped roll out the contact paper, then I cut it to the size of a place mat.  I then cut another piece to the same dimensions.
I peeled off the backing, then had him place the hearts all over the sticky side.  He loved sticking his finger onto it.
Then I cut some ribbon to "frame" the edges and had him smooth it into place.
Once he was happy with where he placed the hearts, we wrote his name and the year on the biggest one for posterity.
Then I took the second piece and peeled away a bit of the backing.  I lined up the top edges, then had S pull the backing.  As it unrolled, I pressed the top piece down, adhering it to the bottom piece.
Then I told him to "use his muscles" and rub the hearts and contact paper so it stuck together.
Trim the edges, and you're ready for a snack.
Older kids would have fun creating their own hearts or images.  With my preschooler, it worked better having the paper hearts already cut out and available in lots of sizes and colors.

This would be equally pretty hanging in a window.  Contact paper is da bomb!


  1. That is SO cute! What a great idea!!! My little gal's birthday is coming up, and I think making placemats like yours would be a FUN craft for her birthday celebration. Thanks for the inspiration! :)

  2. I did this with my kids for every single holiday!

  3. Aw, that turned out great! I love Valentines Day!! It's so fun to do crafts with little ones. They appreciate it so much.

  4. OH! I love this!! I'm always looking for quick and fun ideas to do with my 3 yr old son...we actually have some contact paper and we can cut out some hearts...I'm pinning this and I think we'll make it this weekend! Thanks SO much for the idea! I'd be thrilled for you to share it here too:


  5. Great! I remember making these when we were little. Brings back memories I hope you will link up to my I Heart Projects Party.


  6. I found you on Tater Tots and Jello and I would love it if you would share this with our readers too for Fun Stuff Fridays! http://www.toysinthedryer.com/2012/02/14-days-of-valentines-fun-stuff-fridays_10.html


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