Scandinavian woven heart ornaments are a Christmas tradition in our home. Made from glossy paper, magazine pages, catalog pages, or even wall paper scraps they are a good craft to teach recycling to children, explore creativity, and spend quality family time together. This is a frugal DIY Christmas craft that can be used as a gift basket, a house decoration, or a Christmas tree ornament. Fill the baskets with candy, nuts, small toys, or even gift cards. A woven heart basket is a sweet DIY way to express your love and bring a sense of warm cosines and love to your family celebrations.
Make these woven Christmas heart ornaments together with children or grand children on a quiet afternoon. The experience will bring a sense of peace to the holiday season and the feelings of togetherness will create happy memories.
I learned to make these hearts 40 years ago from an article in Canadian woman’s magazine. By the time my first child was celebrating his second Christmas these paper hearts were a tradition in our home. Made from paper scraps, gold and silver coffee foils, wall paper samples, stiffened fabric scraps, or even laminated silk fibers, these pretty hearts are quick to make and practically free. When you are finished weaving, the heart becomes a three dimensional basket that can hold small gifts, trinkets, gift cards, nuts or candy.
This craft uses paper scraps or fabric scraps. You can probably find the materials around your home. You can even use last year’s calendar pages for the paper. The paper should be glossy and somewhat stiff. This is not a good craft for tissue paper or other fragile paper.
I’ve created a paper pattern template for you to download to make cutting out the paper easier. You can download that by clicking on the red button below.
Woven Heart Ornament Instructions:
- 2 — 10 by 3.5 inch pieces of contrasting paper, folded in half
- Pen or marker
- Glue stick
- Download the woven heart ornament template. Print it out. Trace it onto a piece of thin cardboard. Cut out the woven heart ornament pattern template from the cardboard. This is your template.
- Prepare 2 pieces of contrasting paper (10 inches long by 3.5 inches wide). Fold the paper in half and place one piece of paper inside the other with the colored sides out, and wrong sides together.
- Place the bottom of the heart ornament template along the fold line. Draw the heart pattern on the paper using the template. Cut out both pieces of paper together, cutting around the pattern lines to cut out the shape. Do not cut along the fold line.
- Holding the two folded pieces of paper together firmly, cut along the dotted cutting lines to create 5 or 6 weaving strips. You can vary the thickness of the strips or make them of uniform width.
- Weave the two halves of the heart together, by alternating the weaving for each strip either inside the next one or outside the next one. This is three dimensional weaving. Your final heart will be a basket that you can open, use to hold things, with a handle to hang on the tree.
There are only two possible ways to weave the heart:
- A strip (1) goes through the middle of another folded strip
- The folded strip goes through the middle of the strip (1)
These two moves alternate for each strip to make the weaving pattern:
Strip 1: Move 1, 2, 1, 2, 1, 2
Strip 2: Move 2, 1, 2, 1, 2, 1
Strip 3: Move 1, 2, 1, 2, 1, 2
Strip 4: Move 2, 1, 2, 1, 2, 1
Strip 5: Move 1, 2, 1, 2, 1, 2
Strip 6: Move 2, 1, 2, 1, 2, 1
Finish the basket with a strip of the same paper glued to the center of the heart, on the inside front and the inside back, to create the basket handle. Open the woven heart basket.
Woven Heart Ornaments
Use these woven heart ornaments as gift baskets for small treasures. They are ideal for gift toppers. The finished heart basket made using these templates, is 5 inches deep by 5 1/2 inches wide. You can vary the size, provided you do not change the proportions of the template. The template should always be 1.5:1 (height:width).
You can also vary the number and thickness of the weaving strips. Aim for at least 5 strips, for stability. More strips are fine too.
Ways to use Woven Heart Ornaments:
- Gift toppers
- Gift baskets
- Gift Card envelopes
- Candy baskets
- Cookie baskets
- Tree ornaments
- Wreath decorations
- Table centerpiece
- Party favors
- Valentine’s Day Treat baskets
- Wedding favors or decorations
Weaving these paper heart ornaments might feel awkward the first few times, but your hands quickly learn the moves and it goes quit quickly. I hope you enjoy making this traditional Scandanavian Christmas craft and pass on the skills to the next generation.
What to slip inside your woven heart ornaments
The woven heart basket is a beautiful way to present a small gift or a treat. You can slip anything inside that is light weight and around 2 to 4 inches in size.
- Candy canes
- Lip balm
- Salve tins
- Lotion bars
- Bath bombs
- Herbal Tea bags
- Tea Light candles
- Votive candles
- Seed envelopes
- Flash drive
- Wooden puzzles
- Small Games
- Gift Cards
Woven heart ornaments are easy to make, pretty, frugal, and kind to the earth. Learn to make them and you will bring this warm Scandinavian traditional into your home.
More Christmas Paper Crafts to do
What paper Christmas ornaments did you make as a child? Who taught you to make them?