How to paint Valentine’s cards with watercolors
In this post, I will teach you how to paint watercolor Valentine cards with three effortless and failproof methods. The Youtube video I’ve created for this tutorial will guide you through all the steps. I’ve also added additional tips and hacks to create the most beautiful Valentine’s Day cards for your loved ones.
Stores and online shops are flooded with stunning cards for every holiday and celebration. But I still like to create handmade cards whenever I have the time. They are more personal, and I can customize them to really suit the person I’m giving them to.
Watercolor illustrations are so beautiful and popular nowadays. I also plan to experiment with watercolors and to open my own shop of watercolor clipart. I’ve decided that I will share a simple watercolor tutorial with you!
My main purpose with these DIY cards was to create and teach three different methods that don’t require any special skills. So everyone can make them easily and the results to be stunning!
You can apply these techniques to other watercolor projects too!
But now, let’s dive in!
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Tools and Supplies for the Watercolor Valentine Cards:
The best part? If you have watercolor paint, watercolor paper, and a brush at home. You’re almost set for this craft project.
- watercolor paint,
- watercolor paper (300g),
- a thicker brush for painting (size 12) and a smaller one for the details (size 0),
- white ink,
- masking tape,
- colored markers (optional).
If you don’t own watercolor paint or paper, I’ve found two pretty awesome kits (reasonably priced) to get you started. Both of them have a variety of colors, brushes, and they also include paper. Even though it is more expensive, I like the second one more because of the metallic colors. You can create stunning effects with these.
How do you make a watercolor card?
Painting a watercolor card is pretty simple, but you can use different methods and techniques to create unique designs.
I wanted to show you three easy ways to make handmade watercolor cards that everyone can easily do (even kids with minimal help). The results will look stunning even if you don’t have experience with watercolors or painting in general.
Here is the full video tutorial for all 3 cards. For more instructions, photos, and tips, read along.
To start, I’ve cut up an A4 watercolor paper into 4 (10.5×14.5 cm) sized cards.
#1 – Heart balloons card
For this card, you will need two sheets of small paper we’ve just cut up.
We’ll start painting one of the sheets. I wanted to make it more colorful, so I added red, orange, and purple to the mix.
Remember, never add color directly to the paper. You should dilute the pigment with water before painting. I did add the purple directly from the paper, but it was already wet, and I also added more water to spread it out.
Sprinkle some salt over it to add texture, or add small droplets of white ink to create lighter spots or a star-like effect. You can also experiment with acetone, bleach, or spirit.
NOTE! Wait until your paper is completely dry, then you can rub off the salt. (Salt will damage the paper if the paint is still wet)
When your colored paper is dry, cut out several hearts. You can do it randomly or intentionally. I like to choose interesting spots in the paper.
Glue the watercolor hearts in a bouquet. You can add it up in one corner or top-middle of the paper.
Draw the string and add a quote, bow, or something personal. I did the strings with colored markers, but you can also paint them with watercolor. You can draw a bow with the markers, cut out a bow from the watercolor paper, or use a thin ribbon and tie a bow as I did.
#2 – I love you card
Draw and cut out an ‘I,’ a heart, and a ‘U‘ from cardboard.
Stick a piece of masking tape on a plastic sheet or wrap (my watercolor pad was new, so I used the plastic wrapping from it). Trace and cut the letters using your templates.
Secure the paper with masking tape to the board or table you are working on. This will not only prevent the paper from moving but also creates a nice border for your card.
Arrange and your handmade ‘stickers’ in the middle of the paper. Make sure they are laying flat and sticking properly to the paper. (If not, the paint will seep through and ruin your letters.)
Paint the background with watercolors as we did with the first Valentine card. Add texture with salt, ink, and other materials.
Wait for it to completely dry and remove the masking tape from the edges and also your ‘stickers.’
Correct with a thin brush if you have any color bleeds under the masking tape.
#3 – Big heart card
Cut out a heart template from cardboard and trace it lightly with a pencil on the watercolor paper.
Add a pattern or design with watercolor. I’ve made two examples for you.
Paint a heart outline with water or a very transparent color using a thin brush. Dip the tip of the brush in a more concentrated paint and touch the wet outline here and there.
Draw another outline within the first and do the same. Ensure that you leave a thin space between them, so they don’t touch because the colors will mix and create a messy look.
Repeat until you reach the center.
Experiment with colors; you can create an ombre effect, or a rainbow heart, etc.
Another way of filling the heart is by adding flowers and greenery. I like to paint the flowers first and then filling the background with leaves.
TIP! If you paint on the pencil with watercolor, you won’t be able to erase it. So be extra careful while painting around the heart ‘border.’
Wait until your design is dry and erase the pencil marks.
How do you make a watercolor heart?
As you could see, there are different ways to paint or create a watercolor heart. But let’s sum up all the possible ways to make watercolor hearts:
- paint a heart shape with watercolors,
- draw a heart shape lightly with a pencil and fill it with a pattern (for example, the ‘Big heart card’ we did),
- use a ‘stencil’ – use a heart puncher or cut out heart shapes from a piece of wider masking tape and paint the heart hole (the way we did the ‘I love you’ but use the leftover masking tape and not the hearts),
- paint a watercolor paper sheet, then cut out the shape from the colored paper after it dried (for example, the ‘Heart balloon card’).
Tips and hacks for painting DIY Valentine’s day cards:
- Experiment with salt, bleach, spirit, acetone, ink to create fun effects on your watercolor creations.
- Use good quality watercolor paper (other papers will curl up because of the water).
- Don’t use harsh tapes on the paper, because they will ruin it. Masking tape washi tape works best (they are not as sticky, so you’ll be able to remove them easily).
- Speed up the drying time with a hairdryer.
- Secure the paper on the table with masking tape to prevent curling up.
Conclusion about the handmade watercolor Valentine’s cards
As you could see, it is super easy to paint Valentine’s cards at home. Watercolors are cheap and easy to work with, especially if you are using some tricks and hacks.
With this tutorial, I wanted to show you how to paint Valentine’s cards easily and effectively. It doesn’t require talent or special knowledge or skills.
Customize them and create endless stunning watercolor Valentine’s day cards for friends and family.
Which card was your favorite? Leave a comment!