DIY Valentines Ideas for Kids: Cute Ideas from Local Artists

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with these awesome DIY Valentines ideas created by local artists. Ideas for crafty, upcycled, folded and even pre-made printables.

Valentine’s Day is sneaking up on us quickly. It feels like I blinked and it was February. So now I need some quick ideas for easy Valentine’s day kids valentines to pass out for three separate classrooms and ages ranging from 7-13. Luckily we have some rich local resources in the Twin Cities for DIY valentine cards, gifts and treats. If we can’t do full-on homemade valentine cards, I’ve found a few printables that I really like.

Kids DIY Valentines

Who do we head to for art and craft ideas? We have our favorite local artists and studio owners. Whether you want to make valentines at home or would prefer to leave the mess elsewhere, we’ve found these Twin Cities resources for DIY Valentine’s Day crafts.

Non-Toy Gifts – Crafty DIY Valentines

We love Stef of Non-Toy Gifts for valentines (and any craft ideas). She has ideas for cute crafts, particularly for younger kids, but older kids may like these ideas for simple DIY classroom valentines as well. With some paint, markers, construction paper, toilet paper rolls, paper plates and googly eyes, you’ll be able to do most of her Valentines.  My pick for this year are her Valentine Unicorns made with paper plates.

Red and white Unicorn Valentines made from paper plates by Non-Toy Gifts
Find all the directions on Non-Toy Gifts

ARTrageous Adventures – Upcycled Valentine Bookmarks

A few years ago, Amanda from ARTrageous Adventures shared some great ideas for Making Valentine’s Day A Family Affair. She includes some super simple handmade bookmarks that can be made with things around the house – cardboard from a cereal box (or cardstock), old magazines, scissors and a sharpie marker are all you need.  She also shared instructions for an easy heart magnet and some super easy party favor ideas.

Examples of Valentine's Art that Family Fun Twin Cities did at ARTrageous Adventures in Minneapolis, Minnesota
Examples of Valentine’s Art that FFTC did at ARTrageous Adventures

Leave The Mess Behind at these Local Art Studios

Want to make handmade Valentine’s day gifts that are so much fun without the bother of clean up? Try some of our favorite local studios where you can make Valentine’s Day Crafts without coating your own living room with glitter!

Child's painted hands - Arts and Crafts for Kids - Twin Cities Places to Leave the Mess
Our full list of kid-friendly art studios – many with drop-in crafting hours

Valentine Printables

No time to create? That’s okay. We’ve found a FREE printable card set, and a couple FREE printable games from creative people around the Twin Cities area:

Pizza & Taco Valentines by Stephen Shaskan

Local author and illustrator, Stephen Shaskan is sharing some fun Pizza and Taco printable Valentines, based on his Pizza and Taco book series. While your on his website, cruise the kid-stuff page for more printable fun. If you really want to get a teacher a great Valentine, give them a classroom book to match the classmate Valentines.

Note: This is our Bookshop.org Stephen Shaskan Store. Bookshop.org is an online bookstore with a mission to financially support local, independent bookstores. Family Fun Twin Cities receives a small commission on books ordered through our link. If you want to find a specific local bookstore to support, find them on this map and they’ll receive the full profit off your order. Otherwise, your order will contribute to an earnings pool that will be evenly distributed among independent bookstores (even those that don’t use Bookshop). Learn more here.

Valentines Day Word Search

For puzzle-loving kids, the ever creative Lisa of Twin Cities Frugal Mom has shared a printable Valentines Day Word Search.

Valentine Word Search from Twin Cities Frugal Mom
Get your copies at TwinCitiesFrugalMom.com

Kindness Fortune Tellers from Doing Good Together

Print these cute little Kindness Cootie Catchers from Doing Good Together. This Minnesota-based national nonprofit works to make volunteering and service, along with daily kindness, easy for every family, and what is move loving than that? Choose between “Kindness Conversations” or “Acts of Kindness” themes.

Kindness Fortune Tellers from DoingGoodTogether
Find the template and directions at DoingGoodTogether.org

Homemade Valentines Day Cards

For actual handmade cards, we get a little help from artists at the Center for Book Arts.

Minnesota Center for Book Arts – Homemade Cards

Last year, the Minnesota Center for Book Arts (“MCBA”) offered virtual fold-alongs, including Love Local, which walked viewers through the steps for Three Unique DIY Valentine Cards that pop up. Other online lessons in the series – like envelopes, Artistamps, hand lettering, rubber stamp carving, and collage — would also be useful in making great DIY Valentine’s Day Cards. Find all the videos here.

Cute Valentines from Origami

I really love Origami so I strayed from our local sources to bring some of my favorite folded Valentine ideas.

Fortune Cookies

This year, the Lunar New Year is celebrated from February 1st through February 15th coinciding with Valentines day. We think it would be fun to fold these Origami Fortune Cookies, adding a little Valentine wish in place of the fortune.  Happy Hooligans is not a local blog, but we like the idea anyway.

Favorite Characters

Origami is always a fun DY Valentine idea – look for some of your kids favorite characters as Origami. One year, I learned to make Pikachu in about an hour. You can learn to do the folds together as you fold Valentines for classmates and then your child will have an easy DIY toy available to them any time.

Search your child’s favorite characters. Here are some that I have found with a simple Google search:

  • Origami Mario
  • Origami Unicorns
  • Origami JoJo Siwa Bow
  • Origami Star Wars Ships

These can even be incorporated into DIY Valentine’s day cards.


Inexpensive Non-Candy Valentine Gift Bag Ideas

Inexpensive Non-Candy Valentine Gift Bag Ideas for School Treats

These inexpensive items could be used when candy and treats are not appropriate for your child’s classroom. If you are not feeling creative, you’ll find plenty of free printable Valentines to pair with each of these gifts.

Pencils

Punch two holes into a cardstock heart and insert the pencil like a cupid arrow. Add a cute saying like, “Looking Sharp”. This would go really good with the Valentines Day Word Search from Twin Cities Frugal Mom!  We found 3 Dozen for $7.99 on Amazon.

A Small Box of Crayons

These are a GREAT addition if you only have access to a black and white printer. Make your Valentine a coloring project. You can get 50 of these 4-packs for just $15.99.

Watercolors

Watercolor paints are just so much fun and at around a $1 a case, it’s not too expensive for a small classroom. “Like a Rainbow, you take some water and make my world colorful.”  A 24-pack of  watercolors that look like artist palettes is just $16.89.

Rulers

These are cheap and easy. Add a tag that says “You Rule!” and you’re done! 30 Colorful Plastic Rules are just $11.99.

Bracelets

Crafty kids could make friendship bracelets. Otherwise, these rubber bracelets from Amazon are fun. 24 bracelets with your Valentine message printed on them are just $10.95.

Glow Stick Valentines

I absolutely love these light saber Valentines that use glow sticks! $18.99 for a 36-pack.

**I’m linking to our Amazon store, but you can easily find most of these items locally – even in your grocery store in some cases. As Amazon associates, Family Fun Twin Cities earns from Qualifying purchases. 

Valentines Day Treats from Local Candy Shops

If your school allows candy, a chocolate treat, lollipop or sucker can be a sweet treat. Our Junior Reporter, Andy has gathered a list of his favorite sweet shops for buying fun treats locally. Shops like Candy Land even have bins where you could count out the number of candies you need.

Boy standing in front of Minnesota's Largest Candy Store sign
Find all of Andy’s Favorite Chocolate and Sweet Shops Here

These local artists, writers and shops make Valentines day fun for Minnesota Kids and these easy DIY Valentines ideas should take some of the pressure off of mom and dad. Do you have a favorite locally-designed Valentine idea? We would love to hear it. Share with the community in the comments.

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