Do you remember getting those conversation heart candies when you were a kid? We loved them because they had cute Valentine messages on them. Now you can recreate that vintage feel with these giant conversation heart topiaries. Aren’t they the cutest ever?!!! The best part is that you can put them in any type of container that fits your décor style.
They look sweet enough to eat!
Tools & Supplies:
- Three large heart patterns (for the 3 larger stacked hearts)- You can print out my Heart Topiary Patterns if you like.
- Paper to make heart patterns (for the 3 larger stacked hearts & the one small XO heart)
- Sandpaper (I used a rough 60 grit to get the job done fast)
- Dinner plate of any kind (for helping to push heart cookie cutter into Styrofoam)
- Floral foam block (place into flower pot to keep hearts standing upright)
- Flowers (real or fake)-I used a few flower garlands
- Something to stick your heart topiaries into. I used metal pales and buckets filled with potting soil but you could also put them in flower beds or just about anywhere else you can stick them into.
- Potting soil, dirt, sand, or floral foam-any of these work great to fill your buckets with to stick the topiaries into
- 2 or 3 sheets of Styrofoam (1-7/8″ thick)-For the larger hearts. Since I made two topiaries, I used 3 sheets
- 1 sheet of Styrofoam (1″ thick)-for the small ‘XO’ hearts
- Design Master ‘Color Tools’ brand spray paint (this is the only spray paint available that won’t destroy foam) I used 3 similar colors of real conversation hearts. This paint can be purchased from Michael’s or ordered online. I ended up using just three colors: (Perfect Pink), (Robin’s Egg), and (YellowYellow).
- Styrofoam cutter (I used an electric cutter bought from Hobby Lobby, but if you don’t have one you can use a knife)
- Heart cookie cutter for cutting out the small ‘XO’ hearts (I bought mine at Walmart for a buck or two)
- Wooden dowels at 3/16 diameter-for stacking the three larger hearts (you’ll need three in all-one at approx 18 inches long and two at approx 8 inches long)
- Shish Kabob sticks-for the ‘stems’ of the small ‘XO’ hearts
- Hot pink or red acrylic paint (for the messages on the hearts)
- Sponge applicator for applying acrylic paint
- Sewing pins (to secure stencils to foam)
- Stencils (2 or 3 sizes)
Making the three large hearts:
Make 3 large heart patterns. You can use my Heart Topiary Patterns if you like.
Gather a piece of paper
Fold it in half and line the straight edge of the half-heart pattern along the folded edge of the piece of paper. Then trace with a pencil
Cut it out
Unfold and you’ll have a perfect heart. Do this with all three patterns.
Trace hearts onto the thicker sheet of Styrofoam
Cut them out
The edges will be somewhat jagged which will now need to be sanded with sandpaper
Sand the edges until smooth
Paint the front and back of the hearts
Using the pins, secure the stencils to the heart
Dab acrylic paint into the stencils
Gather the 3 large hearts and 3 wooden dowels
Carefully push the dowel into the halfway mark of the hearts, giving the hearts ‘stems’
Secure the hearts together by sticking their ‘stems’ into each other
Making the small ‘XO’ hearts:
Place the heart-shaped cookie cutter onto the thinner sheet of Styrofoam
Place a plate over the center of the cookie cutter and press down firmly, till the cookie cutter sinks into the Styrofoam
Remove the cookie cutter from the sheet of foam
Carefully push out the Styrofoam heart
Time to sand these little guys down just like the big hearts!
Paint both sides
…and again, paint on the letters just like the big hearts!
Stick kabob sticks into the bottoms to make ‘stems’.
Putting it all together
In the past I’ve used floral foam to stick my topiaries into. I basically wedged the foam into the top of the flower pot, pushing it a few inches down below the top of the pot
My favorite method is the potting soil, as it’s easy to simply dump into the buckets and stick the topiary stems into.
Now plant some real flowers or lay some fake ones on top of the soil and add the heart topiaries.