Nothing says happy Valentine’s Day like Conversation Hearts, don’t you think? These sugary little hearts have been around since 1902 and today, NECCO makes more than 8 billion annually (that’s 100,000 pounds a day!). Why not craft with them, too? Today we’re making Dandy Candy Hearts made with an assortment of your favorite candies, and we’re showing a Conversation Heart Topiary and Conversation Heart Wreath. I have a feeling that kids aren’t the only ones who will like making these easy Valentine’s Day crafts!
The base for our DIY Candy Heart is a 1” thick heart of STYROFOAM Brand Foam. You’ll find that it’s sturdy enough to support the weight of the candy, and it won’t fold or crumble. Also keep in mind that it will not absorb moisture, which is key when working with food – a wet surface will generate mold.
If you can’t find pre-cut hearts, you can cut your own from a 1” disc or sheet of STYROFOAM Brand Foam:
- Draw your shape on the foam
- Wax a serrated knife blade with an old candle or bar of soap
- Cut our your shape, using the knife like a saw
One more pointer: We “glued” on our candy using frosting, which means you can eat the candy later. You can also use thick, white craft glue but the candies will then be inedible.
To make a Dandy Candy Heart, you’ll need:
- STYROFOAM Brand Foam: 1″ thick solid white heart
- Confectioner’s sugar
- Assorted candies: conversation hearts, candy kisses, peppermints, etc. (purchase more than you think cause you know you’re gonna snack!)
- Ribbon, 1” x 12”
- Plastic wrap or wax paper
- Heavy cardboard (optional)
- Tools needed: Table knife; sharp pencil
To make your Dandy Candy Heart:
1. Cover your work surface with plastic wrap or wax paper. If you will need to move the heart to another area to dry, tape the plastic wrap or wax paper onto a large piece of heavy cardboard so you can easily move the heart when finished.
2. Make a thick icing “glue” by mixing confectioner’s sugar with a little water and stirring until smooth. The icing should be spreadable, yet stick to the knife when lifted. If the icing becomes too dry as you work, add several drops of water and remix.
3. Using a pencil, make a hole in the top of the heart.
4. Practice arranging the candies on the heart till you like your design. Remove candies and rearrange them on your work surface.
5. Using a table knife, spread a thin layer of icing over the foam heart, beginning with the sides. Do not cover the hole.
6. Push the candies directly into the icing glue following your design. When done, let the frosting dry.
7. Thread the ribbon through the hole, and knot it for hanging.
Every year, NECCO updates the expressions found on Conversation Hearts. “FAX ME” was the first new saying back in the 1990s. What new sayings do you recommend for 2012? How about “CRAFT ON”?