My Mom Made That: Valentine's Day Felt Topiary

The heart wreath hanging on my back door seemed a bit lonely, but it also provided inspiration for an accompanying table decoration.  While shopping at Target in those addictive $1 bins, I stumbled upon these darling Valentine’s Day pails:

Target $1 Pail Valentine's Day Red Pink Hearts

I picked a couple of them up, and came up with the idea to do felt topiaries that matched the wreath that was already made.  Initially I planned to make the topiaries entirely red, as I had plenty of red felt left over from Christmas, but I also realized that I had some white felt too.  I decided to do all of the colors on the pail– red, white, and pink.  I picked up the remaining supplies– pink felt, Valentine’s Day ribbon, red shredded paper, dowels and the foam shapes at my next trip to Hobby Lobby.

To recap, to do this project you will need:

  • (2) containers to hold the Topiaries– I used the pails from Target
  • Red, Pink, and White Felt (I needed 1.25 yards in each color)
  • (2) Foam Circles
  • (2) 12″ Dowels
  • White Spray Paint
  • Straight/Dressmakers Pins
  • (2) Foam Squares
  • Valentine’s Day ribbon
  • Shredded Paper (from wrapping paper section of Target)
  • Craft Knife
  • Hot Glue Gun/ E6000

MM spray painted the two dowels white when he spray painted our new lightbox white.  They dried over night while I prepared the felt for the project.  (If you’ve made one of the wreaths before, you know that it takes a while to get enough felt circles to cover the entire foam.  I started by using the inside of my masking tape roll (a little less than 3 inches), as my pattern for the felt circles.  Valentin's Day Felt Topiary Red Pink White

It took me about 2 hours to get all of the circles traced and cut off.  You need quite a few.  I didn’t worry about using a dark permanent marker for the tracing.  I cut on the inside of the circles, so that no black ink was visible.  I love cutting out shapes– does anyone else feel that way? If you do, then this is a craft for you!

Cutting the circles reminded me of when I was a little girl.  I loved cutting out paper dolls.  My grandmother used to bring back a book of paper dolls from each and every one of her trips.  She’s the one who taught me, you don’t move the scissors for the perfect cut, you move the paper– or in this case the felt!

I can’t really estimate how many circles you are going to need.  I bunched mine fairly close together, but you aren’t required to do that.  I started with tracing 30-40 of each color, and then used them up and estimated how many more I would need.Wreath, Topiary, Valentine's Day  I ended up having more than I needed, and might be able to make a matching garland for our dining room… I figured why waste the felt circles!

One I got the first batch of circles cut out, I began by covered each of the foam balls.  I initially thought I should go in a systematic way, such as a row, but I found that a random pattern looked much better.  I took one of each color, and folded them into quarters, and stuck a dressmakers pin into them.  As I started covering the foam, I clustered each of the 3 colors close together, but then began to distribute them more randomly as the circle filled up!Wreath Topiary Valentine's Day  When the circles were 2/3 covering the foam shape, I inserted the dowel into the foam to make sure that I had a location I liked.  I put a bit of E6000 onto the tip of the dowel for a secure fit.

Once the top of the topiary was finished, I took the square foam shape and cut it to fit into the pail.  It is best to cut just a teensy bit off at a time.  You are aiming for a secure fit so that the Topiary isn’t too top heavy.  To further secure the fit, add a bit of glue to the base of the pail before inserting the foam square.   I used a basic craft knife, but I know that there is a specialty blade that you can buy that is specially designed to cut foam.Wreath Felt Topiary

I then inserted the other end of the dowel into the foam.  Added the shredded red paper.  I didn’t glue this, as I wasn’t sure what glue would work best.  I regret not gluing it, as bits of it get everywhere.  Any suggestions?

My last touch was to tie a bow around the “stem” of the topiary with some cute Valentine’s Day ribbon I found.  I think they are a great start to the Dining Room Table Decor.  (And I’m thinking that I will be using those last few circles for a matching garland!)

Here’s the final product:

My Mom Made That: Valentine's Day Felt Topiaries

(BTW, I love the $5 Target Valentine’s Day tablecloth that I found the other day… it wipes clean which means that we can still eat at the table without me having to do wash during the holidays!)