Valentine's Day "stained glass" hearts


By Caitlin Murray Giles


Short of hopping the next plane to Florida, there’s not much you can do about the gray and dreary winter skies that blanket Chicago this time of year. However, you can improve the view out your windows by decorating them with colorful “stained glass” hearts just in time for Valentine’s Day.This fun and easy project will brighten everyone’s mood while creating some homemade holiday decor.


  • Crayons (red, pink, orange, white)
  • Box grater or cheese grater
  • Wax paper
  • Iron, ironing board
  • Old, thin towels or rags
  • Heart-shaped templates (we used
  • Scissors
  • Hole punch
  • String or ribbon
  • Push pins
  • Tape


  1. Begin by rounding up old or broken crayon pieces (I always save broken crayons in plastic bags for projects like these). Avoid pieces that are too small or they will be difficult for small hands to work with. Peel off any paper. We used a selection of red, pink and orange crayons because we had a Valentine's Day theme in mind, but you can use whatever color crayons you have around.
  2. Grate the crayons into small pieces using a cheese grater. This step requires adult supervision. (Watch those fingers and knuckles!) Gather your crayon shavings into piles, sorted by color.
  3. Cover your ironing board with an old towel or rag and lay one piece of wax paper down flat. Spread the crayon shavings around the wax paper. You can use one color only or mix the colors together for a blended effect. We found that fewer crayon shavings worked better for this project, so start with a small amount. Cover the crayon pieces with another, similar-size piece of wax paper and another old towel (this project can get messy if the melted crayons ooze out, so you want to protect both your iron and your ironing board).
  4. Set the iron to a medium heat and carefully move it back and forth over the towel a few times. This is an adult- or big-kid-only job. After a few strokes, lift up the towel to see if the crayon shavings have melted. If not, keep ironing until you achieve the desired result.
  5. Let the wax paper cool completely and check to be sure the edges have adhered together completely. Using a heart-shaped template, trace hearts in various sizes onto the wax paper. Cut out each heart shape.
  6. You can display the "stained glass" hearts in your window in a few different ways. You could tape them right to the glass. Or you can use a punch to put a hole in each heart and string them from a ribbon secured to the window frame with a push pin. Another festive option is to string several hearts together onto a longer ribbon to create a Valentine's Day bunting that drapes across your entire window.
Kids Eat Chicago

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