Friday, January 8, 2016

Create Your Own Valentine's Day Seals

Now that Christmas and the New Year are behind us, my kids are already planning all the important details for the next big holiday - Valentine's Day! Around here, January is full of cutting out paper hearts, stocking up on cookie decorating supplies and designing our Valentine's Day cards.

Basically, once the heart-shaped candy debuts on store shelves, we start to discuss what we want to create and share for the big holiday.

I always encourage the kids to make something different and unique to gift. I am already excited about my daughter's choice, we will be making homemade heart-shaped lollipops in an assortment of flavors and hand stamping little bags for them to go in. My son is still thinking about it. I am guessing he will want something Star Wars related...

For my own project,  I decided to make special Valentine's notes to slip into my kids' lunches.  I wanted to make the notes extra special by designing a couple Valentine's Day Seals to stamp into red wax for the outside.

I love the novelty of sealing a letter with wax. A simple word, initials or a symbol would be a romantic way to seal up a special love note this Valentine's Day.  I think you will be surprised at how simple they are to create!

To make the seal, you will need:

  • Sculpey Oven-Bake Clay - any color
  • Letters or symbols for the impressions - I used alphabet beads
  • wire cutters *optional
  • red wax
  • envelopes

Start by selecting your word, initials or symbol. I found these great letter beads that just needed to be trimmed in order to make a clear impression in my seal.

You may find a simpler alternative, but these beads just needed the loops snipped off.

Then I could create my words.

Take a small amount of Sculpey clay to form a stamp. I used roughly 1/4 of the package and created a flat side and comfortable finger grip in the other for stamping into the warm wax.

Press the letter firmly and evenly into the soft clay. XOXO was easy, but if you use a word, be sure to make the imprint reversed so the word will have the correct orientation when stamped.

Then carfully remove the letters from the clay.

Bake the clay at 300 degrees for about 5 minutes, or until dry. As the clay cools it will harden.

Once the clay has cooled, they are ready to be used to leave your seal!

Melt wax onto your closed envelope, enough to cover your stamp. Then wait 20 - 30 seconds for the wax to cool slightly. This will allow it to hold the impression. If you try to stamp it too early, it will get stuck in the impression. Since the clay is now hard, just use a toothpick to remove the wax. Reheat the wax and try again!

It takes a little practice to get the seal impression just right, but I am going to have a lot of fun with these this holiday. I know my kids are going to love opening up these Valentine's letters.

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