Hearts have been lovingly collected throughout American history, including in primitive decor. In the 18th and 19th centuries, for example, pincushions, and other primitive stitchery in the shape of hearts, were widely available. In fact, heart motifs have been popular for household utensils, furniture, and primitive crafts since colonial times. Blacksmiths would finish off an implement with a heart-shaped handle or finial, and furniture was often finished with cut-out or painted-on hearts. Today, antique heart-themed molds, cutters and waffle irons are highly collectible. Of course, one of the most enduring heart-themed customs is the giving of valentines. The earliest valentines were handwritten, though the first mass-produced ones were available by the end of the 18th century. I decided to make little primitive heart sachets from country dish towels. These are super easy to make and people love them!
Thing to do:
1. Pick two scraps, or cut out two pieces, of the fabric approximately 4″ square, and pin them sparingly but securely around the edges, right sides facing.
2. Using the fabric pen, free-hand draw a heart about 3″ tall. Don’t worry about your heart being perfectly symmetrical, imperfection is the calling card of the primitive arts. Feel free to slightly elongate the heart shape in the typical manner of primitive heart motifs. Practice on a piece of paper before drawing on the fabric.
3. Move the pins so that a few are inside of the heart shape to hold the fabric together without shifting. Use the pinking shears to cut out the heart motif on both pieces of fabric at once.
4. Machine or hand-sew the two heart-shaped pieces together with a 1/4″ seam allowance. Leave about 1- 1/2″ open along one side.
5. Use the regular scissors to carefully snip into the seam allowance along the point and the curves, for ease of turning. Turn to right side, using the turning tool to fully turn out the heart’s point.
6. Stuff firmly with fiberfill, using the turning tool to get the stuffing down into the point and evenly into the curves. Fill the center of the heart with potpourri.
7. Turn the un-sewn portion 1/4 to the inside and hand-sew using a slip stitch to close.