I really enjoy decorating my shelf each holiday. I have basic stuff that matches the room that I can use whenever, but whenever I'm feeling festive or that I want a change, there's space to decorate. So fun. :)
For this Valentine's day, I felt like doing something warm and pink, something perhaps a little vintage feeling.
Yarn is as warm and cozy as it gets, so I thought I would wrap some letters up in yarn. Then they'd have that warm feel and have great colors as well.
I had originally planned on doing "XO" but then I saw Holly's from My Sister's Suitcase's adorable yarn-wrapped letters and decided to go with "LOVE" like she did, only I kept mine horizontal.
It's fun to see the difference between our letters too: she did hers in really bright, fun colors and I did mine in soft pinks--completely different effect. Check hers out.
I liked her ombre effect, so did that as well for mine.
Wrapping the letters in yarn is pretty strait forward. A little tricky for the tops of the letters, but for that we both cut strips of yarn, glued them across the top an then wrapped the yarn around horizontally. You can check out Holly's tutorial.
Since I'm lucky enough to have a handy-dandy husband, I just drew some letters out on particle board and he cut them for me rather than purchase the paper mache letters you find at craft stores. Easy, peasy and inexpensive.
Now, the really fun part, at least to me, about the mantel was that I had my mother-in-law teach me to crochet so that I could make these cute crochet hearts:
I put them on this cone I picked up along with some doilies to coordinate with the paperboard heart banner.
For my crochet lessons, she first showed me all the different stitches and had me crochet a little swatch to practice. Then we started working on the hearts. We tried out 4 different free crochet heart patterns, and by far my favorite pattern was this pattern from Skip To My Lou.
That pattern was great because you could do all 3 rounds for a bigger heart, but if you wanted a medium-sized heart, then just do the inner 2 rounds. For a small heart, just do the first round. And for the tiny hearts, it was easy to modify too.
Here is her "round 1" to make the inner part of the big heart (or to just leave as is as a small heart):
Chain 4. Make all of the next stitches in the first chain. 3 trc, 3 dc, chain 1, 1 trc, chain 1, 3 dc, 3 trc, chain 2 slip stitch
To make the tiny hearts, here is how I modified it:Round 1
Chain 3. Make all of the next stitches in the first chain. 3 dc, 2 sc, 1 dc, 2 sc, 3 dc, chain 2 slip stitch
Sometimes I even modified it like this:
Chain 3. Make all of the next stitches in the first chain. 1 dc, 1 trc, 1 dc, 2 sc, 1 dc, 2 sc, 1 dc, 1 trc, 1 dc, chain 2 slip stitch
Anyway, fun project for me! I got to learn a new, fun skill. I got to use lots of yarn that for some reason I just really like. I get a cute decorated shelf!
Here is a peak at the conversation heart cone I made last year for the shelf. It didn't last until this year--between my kids licking it and it falling and breaking a bit, it went into the trash.
Then the year before that, in a different house, this was the Valentine's mantel I came up with. Completely different feel, but also great.