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The idea for a DIY Mother’s Day gift came to me because it’s really important to me that I give my mom a gift for Mother’s Day that comes from the heart. I can’t think of a better way to let the special mom in my life know how much we care than by giving her a personal, handmade gift. I found a gorgeous card to go with it, which I think help offset the untidy, “I-made-this-with-the-help-of-4-year-olds” look of the handprints. Check out that beautiful card I got from Hallmark’s new Signature line!
Materials for a DIY Handprint Picture Frame
- A large, thick piece of photo mat paper. I got mine at Hobby Lobby but they’re available at most craft stores
- Xacto knife
- Picture frame (frugal tip: I found mine at a thrift store!)
- A photo of your lovely child(ren)
- Craft paint. I used acrylic but tempra or another kind of paint would work too.
- Paper plates
- Foam paint sponge brushes
- Sharpie markers (optional)
How to Make a Custom Photo Mat
For this gift, I had some large picture frames that didn’t have a mat border. My kids range from ages 14 to 2, so I needed a mat wide enough to fit my teenager’s handprint. I traced the backing board of the frame onto the back side of the photo mat paper to get the right sized mat, then cut it out with the Xacto knife.
Once I had the correct size mat, I traced a 5×7 picture to measure the window for the photo. With everything measured out, I knew how much room I had to fit hand prints in.
I wanted a thin layer of paint for the handprints without big, uneven gobs. I put a little paint onto a paper plate and used the foam brush to paint their hands. I used a separate plate for each child so the different colors of paint didn’t run together. I also used a separate brush for each color because 1) I’m too lazy to rinse them off and 2) they came in a 6-pack for less than $1.50.
4 handprints get a little crowded on the frame. Cautious Nikki would advise you to wait until each print dried before doing the next one, but I was too impatient for that. 😉 I also tested out how it would look with just the twins, and if you have 2 or 3 children their prints should fit much better!
Use a Sharpie marker to add their names and ages if you have room, and you’re done!
Embellishments to Make the Gift Stand Out
This craft was a lot of fun to make and my kids were excited to be a part of it. BUT I did kinda feel like the gift was missing something to make it truly amazing. I ran to Walmart to see what I could find to give the gift an extra special something and saw these beautiful Hallmark Signature cards. I think having a card to go with the gift makes the celebration more elegant. I mean, look at these beautiful cards! Plus, I need somewhere to write a sweet note and have my kids sign their names in their scrawly, 4-year-old handwriting.
There were 2 aisles of Hallmark cards at Walmart for everything from birthdays to graduation to love notes, and one whole row of cards was all for Mother’s Day. The ones I picked out are like the elite ‘Maserate’ of Mother’s Day cards, and you can tell because they have their own little section in a “we’re a step above you all” kind of way. Bonus: Find a store near you and use this link to get a coupon for $1 off any 2 cards! You can find lots of other great Mother’s Day inspiration on that site as well.
Walmart has so many beautiful cards for Mother’s Day. These Signature cards are premium, handcrafted cards perfect for celebrating your mom. Beautiful cards like these Hallmark Signature cards also make a lovely keepsake that your mom can treasure for years to come.
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3 Tips for a Perfect Handprint Picture Frame
A friend once told me “measure twice, cut once”, which is always good advice. Some other things you will want to keep in mind as you plan your DIY handprint picture frame:
- Infants will ball up their little fists, so for babies it’s better to do a footprint.
- If you do have many children and need to layer or overlap their handprints, paint the hands of the children on the upper layers with a thinner amount of paint. Their print will show up but will be faint enough so the sibling’s print underneath theirs will still show through.
- Test the handprints out on a separate piece of paper. I had the little ones watch their teenage brother make his handprint. Then when it was their turn we practiced both without paint and with paint. I didn’t want to go to all the trouble of cutting the photo mat only to have the handprints not turn out!
Mother’s Day is right around the corner. If you don’t have time to make a handprint picture frame you still have time to grab a stylish Mother’s Day card. Do you know of a mom who would appreciate a sweet and special Hallmark Signature Mother’s Day card?