Paper cutting has its origins in China, and over the centuries the craft has spread throughout the world. Today many cultures have their own versions of paper cutting. The Japanese have kiri-e, used to depict scenes; Mexicans have papel picado, used in buntings for fiestas like Day of the Dead. The Germans and Swiss have scherenschnitte, used for valentines, love letters and silhouettes. The Polish call their craft wycinanki and used it to decorate walls, while the Dutch call it papiersnyden. In Jewish tradition, paper cutting was used to decorate marriage contracts or ketubot. In some parts of the Philippines, people make intricately cut paper wrappers called pabalat for traditional sweets.
At one time or another you’ve also probably done paper cutting in a simpler form – paper snowflakes, paper doilies, and paper doll chains come to mind. Today let’s make a heart cutout that can be used for a greeting card, or as wall décor when mounted and framed.
You will need:
* Heart template (Use this or make your own)
* 2 sheets of white copy paper
* Light blue cardstock, 6 by 6 inches
* Dark blue cardstock, 12 by 7 inches
* Sharp fine-tipped scissors, or X-Acto knife
* Scallop edge decorative scissors
* Spray adhesive
* Craft glue
* Craft knife
* Cutting mat
* Bone folder
Fold a piece of plain copy paper in half. Using the template as a guide, with the straight edge placed on the fold, trace the design onto the paper with a pencil. Use a sharp fine-tipped scissors or sharp X-Acto knife to cut out the shaded portions of the design. This requires some patience, so go slowly and carefully. Use a scalloped edge scissors to cut the edge of the heart. When done, carefully unfold the paper to reveal the full design. You may want to pin the cutout between the pages of a book to flatten it out.
To make the card, spray adhesive onto the back of the cutout then adhere it to the light blue card. Cut around the heart with the decorative scissors.
Cut a sheet of dark blue cardstock to the indicated size, then score and fold in half. Glue the heart onto the front of the card. Cut the second sheet of white copy paper to 11-1/2 by 6-1/2 inches, and fold in half. Apply a thin line of glue on the outside of the fold and nest it inside the card.