Page and her daughter Coco have a really sweet thing: They each carry around a little stuffed fabric heart so that when either Page or Coco is missing the other, she can hold the heart and feel closer together. When I heard about this, I knew I needed to make a little heart for my own daughter, although at this point in her cognitive development, she might be more likely to plop it in her applesauce than to look at it and think fondly of me!
So, even though Lupe might be a bit young, this Valentine’s Day I’m starting our own ritual with these Sweetheart Charms. I added a simple pocket to each soft wool heart so you can stow a tiny note or a small piece of candy, and I also topped each charm with a sturdy loop so your keepsake can hang from a backpack, belt loop, or buttonhole!
This project is quick enough to make for a big group but also special enough to sew for your very favorite Valentine. And since these Sweetheart Charms are so easy, I’m going to make a few of them for Lupe and me. That way some of them can take a dip in the applesauce!
Happy Valentine’s Day! --Molly
- Wollfiltz Wool Felt Bundle, 100% wool. We used a Blossom Bundle.
- Gutermann’s Hand Quilting Thread to match all of your felt. For the Blossom Bundle I used colors 956, 349, 3117, 829 and 1938. (Or if you’d rather just get one spool I would recommend color 829.)
- Sweet Dreams Cotton Stuffing
- 1mm Chinese Knotting Cord. One bobbin is enough cord for about 50 Charms, but we used two for color variation: Yellow and Peach.
- A Sweetheart Charms Template, available to download for free here, printed and cut out.
These are enough materials to make dozens of Sweetheart Charms in both sizes. The small Charms are 1 3/4 inches across, and the large Charms are 2 1/2 inches across.
Using the Template cut out two small or large Heart pieces and one small or large Pocket piece from one color of Wool Felt.
Cut a 7-inch length of the Knotting Cord. Fold the cord in half and tie the ends together in a simple overhand knot to create a loop.
Place one Heart piece on top of the other and then place the Pocket piece on top of them both. Pin all three pieces together with a straight pin.
Thread a 24-inch length of the Hand Quilting Thread onto a hand sewing needle and tie a knot at the end.
Starting at the bottom right side of the heart, insert the needle between the two Heart pieces and out a scant 1/8-inch from the edge at the backside (the side without the Pocket). This will hide the knot inside of the heart.
You will sew around the entire perimeter of the heart with a whip stitch. To take the first stitch insert the needle into the front of the heart 1/8-inch to the left of the last exit point and push the needle through all of the felt layers. Pull the needle through to the back.
Take the next stitch in the same way, entering from the front 1/8-inch from the previous exit point and then pulling through to the back. The whip stitch will wrap around the edge, as shown above.
Whip stitch around the perimeter until you reach the divot at the top of the heart.
Insert the knotted end of the cord loop between the two felt layers at the divot’s point. Push the knot down until you can no longer see it. Take two whip stitches at the bottom of the divot between the two cords. Be careful not to catch either the cords or the knot.
Continue whip stitching around the perimeter until you’re midway through the second hump of the heart.
Stuff the heart firmly with the cotton stuffing. Whip stitch until you’ve made it all the way around the entire perimeter, closing the gap and enclosing all of the stuffing.
Tie a small knot in the thread at the last exit point. Insert the needle right next to the knot, and push the needle through the stuffing, exiting anywhere. Cut the thread at the exit point to hide the thread’s end.
Write a tiny note, slip it in the pocket and your Sweetheart Charm is ready to give to your Valentine!