Danish Pleated Christmas Hearts

Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it
  • Prep Time
    5 min
  • Total Time
    10-15 min
  • Total Views
    1,192

Beautiful, versatile and simple to make -these Danish pleated Christmas hearts are a great addition to any Christmas craft sessions for kids and adults alike.

Pleated Christmas Hearts, a Danish Christmas tradition

These hearts are traditional Danish Christmas decoration (the oldest preserved Christmas heart was actually made by H.C. Andersen back in 1860). They can be made simple with just straight lines on the paper, or you can do patterns and make them slightly more complicated.

Start by making the simple ones (especially if you are making them with kids) and then either find new patterns on pinterest or google, or just try to cut different lines on the two half-hearts to see what they become.

TIP: Just make sure the length of the lines on one half-heart are the same as the width of the other half-heart so they fold together without leaving lots of extra paper on one side.

Flettede Julehjerter Pleaded Christmas Hearts How to Make it

A fun Christmas craft for kids too

Kids can easily make these too. For better results use leather paper (handmade paper like the red and white hearts above), glitter craft paper or felt. These types of material don’t make folds, tear or crumple so easily when mistakes are made. The glossy hearts made from thin glossy tissue paper (which are used traditionally in Denmark) are harder to make as every crease and fold will be shown. And why make it harder on yourself when the finished result is just as pretty with the handmade crease-proof paper?

Let’s make some pleated Christmas hearts!

I have shown the step by step guide below and a quick guide with a template on top. You can use this template for more advanced Christmas hearts too -just cut more lines or make them patterned. That’s what I do, I have shown a few examples below.

Traditionally the pleated heart was used to keep sweets and spiced Christmas cookies on the Christmas tree, so the kids (and adults, I am sure) could later “eat the tree” after they finished walking around it while singing Christmas carols. Yes, I know it sounds made up, but we really do that in Denmark and we LOVE it 🙂

Have fun and Merry Christmas

Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it

Directions

Step 1
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it

Fold the paper so that it is lying double, and place the template on top of the folded line. Trace the template onto the paper using a pencil

Step 2
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it

Lift the flaps when tracing the lines to make sure you copy them down correctly. It can be a bit difficult to squeeze the pencil in between the gaps in the paper and get straight lines.

Step 3
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it

Do the same for a different coloured paper and cut them out.

Step 4
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it

Start to weave the papers together. The pattern is over - inside - over. Be sure to pass the strips through the other coloured strips so the heart can open in the end and not just be pretty from one side. You will not require any tape or glue to hold it together if you have done it correctly.

Step 5
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it

Continue weaving the strips together.

Step 6
Flettede Julehjerter Pleated Christmas Hearts How to Make it

Once it's done you should be able to open it like this. Traditionally the pleated heart was used to keep sweets and spiced Christmas cookies on the Christmas tree, so the kids (and adults, I am sure) could later "eat the tree".

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