How to weave a heart

The woven heart basket is one of the most classic Danish Christmas ornaments. They say the famous fairytale author Hans Christian Andersen made the first one around 1860 and it’s been a beloved Christmas Craft for children and adults ever since.

But I thought it was time for a little update, so I made a book of templates for all kinds of Christmas ornaments to weave – not just hearts.

I would love to show you how to weave a heart basket as we do it in Denmark.

NOTE! If you sign up below, you’ll get the instructions + extra templates in a neat printable pdf.


You need:

A template – download the mouse template here.

Paper – glossy paper, wrapping paper, design paper, pages from books and magazines, etc. The paper should not be too heavy, as it will be difficult to bend and weave. If the paper is too lightweight, the ornament will be fragile and easily torn, but you can glue two pieces together or apply fusible interfacing to the back. Glue/apply before cutting.

Glue / glue stick
Stapler / tape / pins
String/ribbon for hanging – optional
Craft supplies for decoration, if you like


Cut your papers

Print the template.

Cut the template along the dashed line. Cut roughly a bit outside the rest of the outline.

You need two pieces of paper for weaving, preferably in two different colours or patterns.

Place the two pieces on top of each other so you can cut both pieces together. Fold them and place the dashed edge of the template up to the fold. Secure the template with staples, pins or tape. This makes it easier to cut the pieces without the paper shifting around.

Cut the incisions (the grey strokes) first and then the black outline.


Weave your ornament

For simplicity, the photos show weaving of a heart, but the same method goes for mice, angels etc.

“Have you ever tried to weave a snowman?
How about an angel or a reindeer?

The book “Scandinavian Woven Christmas Ornaments” has lots of templates and inspiration for woven ornaments inspired by the classic Scandinavian Woven Christmas heart baskets, but in brand new shapes and with ample opportunity to add a touch of your style and personality.

The models are made so beginners can join as well. There are detailed step-by-step instructions for the weaving techniques.

All you need is paper, scissors, glue and Christmas spirit.


Buy the book

Sign up below to get access to The Library. In there you’ll find – among other freebies – an 8-pages sample from the book with instructions and templates for more paper ornaments ↓

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Step by step – 100 artworks part 3

Step by step – 100 artworks part 3

I strongly believe in inspiration. I wouldn’t be where I am artisticly or personally if I hadn’t had access to inspiration. For this piece I (almost) followed the steps in this video series from Laura Lein-Svencner. Well, up to a point. Then my own process totally took over and things evovled…

First, a few magazine clippings and a bit of patterned paper was glued down with gel medium step1

Pale green acylic paint was rolled on with a brayer to push the collage papers back The white paint was sprayed out of an almost empty paint bottle, something I love to do even though it’s pretty hard to control step2

Shadows added with a bit of burnt umber


Then some scribbles and marks using Neocolor I crayons I have no idea what characters will emerge from this yet step4

Next step was to stamp with some homemade stamps. Stamps can be made in a lot of materials. Mine are linocut Now a human figure is beginning to show step5

Another layer of acrylic paint. This time I scribbled with a scewer into the wet paint


And this is where I lost myself. The characters took over and one thing led to another = no documentation of the last steps But this is how it turned out

Mixed Media on paper, 20 x 20 cm “Forrest friends”

100 artworks part 2

Just watching

Little Red Riding Hood

I miss you most when the stars are out

So I decided to work with mixed media in my 100 artworks challenge.

A few years back I learned how to paint intuitive and embrace building layers as a way to building the story and depth in my paintings (Thank you Flora Bowley). Since then I haven’t felt “the fear of the white canvas”, but this time I was suddenly struck by it. I had a pretty hard time getting started with the collages. I got out books, magazines and papers, but they only got as far as moving around on my tabletop for days. I couldn’t make up my mind as to how to get started.

It is not the first time I work with collages and mixed media, but this time I probably had higher expectations for myself and the journey I was about to begin. I forgot that I always do best when I have a playful and experimental approach.

At last I jumped in. I started to cover a series of papers with scraps. Then went over all of it with white paint and a brayer in order to get a more uniform and grungy surface. I quickly found persons hiding in the emerging shapes and began to paint them.

A few (of the 10-12 pieces I had started) was quite good. They had some of the qualities I was looking for, among other things, that the collage papers clearly shone through in several places and had clearly inspired the subject. And I’m crazy about the grungy background and the slightly dreamy / poetic expression. But the rest of them, didn’t excite me at all.

More inspiration was necessary

I was missing something. One night night I was wasting time researching on Pinterest and found this series of videos with Laura Lein-Svencner.

Watching Laura work made me realize that what I miss in my paintings are depth and multiple layers. It is a very natural part of the process when I paint with acrylics. In fact, it is often my favorite part to play and build up layers, experiment with colors, shapes, patterns, etc. But somehow I had not thought of the importance of this part in my mixed media experience.

I’m starting a new series now, where I will follow the steps from Laura’s videos. I’ll work on creating more depth and I will force myself not to let the characters take over until much later in the process.

Want to see how it goes?

Artist's log

This challenge is ment to be a journey of artistic and personal exploration and development, so I thought that I would record my observations along the way:

  • I am obviously into teal, fluorescent red and orange – and have been for a while now. I’ll absolutely allow myself to change it along the way if I want to, but right now it’s a happy love affair.
  • I like it “dirty”, grungy, splatters, marks, patterns.
  • I must remember that layers and marks is something I love to work with, so do not force subjects to emerge to quickly.
  • My characters are rarely happy. Sadness, melancholy, thoughtfulness or ambiguous smiles / facial expressions are more my style. I’m not sure why, but I think it’s tremendously interesting and I will explore this more in the future.

New starts – 100 artworks challenge

mixed-mediaI have decided to commit myself to a long-term project this year. To dive deeper into and develop my style and to share my process and thoughts about what is going on both creatively and personally when I am creating this way. I’m thinking a lot about how, what and why I paint and I really want to explore that further.

The inspiration

Over the last years I have seen how several of the artists, I follow, has carried out various artsy challenges – 365 faces, drawing-a-day etc. I am deeply impressed by the commitment they put into it, and the development which obviously happens through such a process.

And every time I thought that I could never do that. I am simply too restless and impatient to keep up the interest on a single subject, the same material and the same size for a long time. Always new ideas and techniques to try out … often before I finish what I’m currently doing. It often results in projects being shelved just before they are finished and I jump around among a lot of fun projects, but without focus and direction.

The answer

But then I came across Kellee Wynne Conrad’s challenge #100artworkschallenge and I thought: That I could probably do. 100 sounds doable and there’s no deadline (I like that!).

Still, I had to spend a long time considering which topic, media and size I could keep the interest on through 100 works.

The commitment

I pretty quickly decided on Mixed media. That way I get to play with a lot of materials in different ways. Kellee recommends small sizes and I already have a stack of 20×20 cm canvases lying around, so that choice was easy. You’re supposed to use the same substrate, but I give myself permission to break the rules, so I’m starting out on paper and will save the canvases for later.

The subject … now that was really difficult to decide on. It should be both challenging, fun, and somewhere I can express myself and my style. I looked at a LOT of collages/mixed media works on Pinterest etc. and although I love the variety and enjoy a wide range of styles, the works I always get back to features humans (or human-like creatures) and some kind of story, I can relate to. So that (pretty wide defininition) will be my choice of topic.

I will share my process here, but if you want to be sure to see all the artworks as they come to life, come follow me on instagram.

Ready, set, create!