Nemo vs. Our School House

Before we get to my hot mess of a Valentine’s Day craft idea, let me give you some background on my artistic history.

My great-grandfather was an amazing, accomplished, painter. My nana swears I have some of his talent, but she’s my nana, so she’s supposed to say that. I mean really, doesn’t every grandmother believe their granddaughter is the next great thing?

Speaking of my nana, she’s quite crafty. She’s an unbelievable quilter and knitter. Famous quilters have envied her work, and accomplished knitters have marveled at the detail in her sweaters and blankets.

My mom has the gift, too. She’s a great artist and crafter. She can paint and draw with raw talent. She can fancy a bow out of wire ribbon that deserves a spot in Martha’s hall of fame.

I’m related to all of these people by blood, and as a result, I was blessed with a few artistic genes, if you believe in such a thing, but I cannot be compared to any of them.

You see, although I did win a few art awards back in the day, I hit my plateau in the seventh grade. Seriously. Bubble letters, painting, portraits, crafts - you name it - everything has maxed out at a seventh grade level. I’m surprisingly okay with that.

I really like crafting - I do! I’m just not that great at it, and I want to be better. You know, like a high schooler. Yes, this 27-year old would like to be able to craft at a high school level.

Once I decided to add some valentine flavor to the house beyond the red and white M&Ms in a heart shaped candy bowl, I spotted some paint chips in Home Depot and had the brilliant idea to cut hearts out of various shades of pink.

I had all of my materials, and I was pumped to create something funky and cool (and then blog about it).

I cut out nearly a hundred hearts (while watching season one of Downton Abbey). It was a real pain in the bum, actually, and it took longer than I’m willing to admit. My hand cramped up. I really went to great lengths, people. I had the idea to thread the hearts with string and hang them on my big dining room mirror. I envisioned a pretty, layered effect with different shades of pink. I wanted to give a cozy feel to the one space that changes with the seasons due to my lack of a real mantel to decorate.

Well, when I had the first set of hearts hung up, this is what I got.

Yes, this brilliant, seventh grade crafter didn’t realize hanging paint chips on a mirror would reveal the printed back of the paint chip as well. Reflection. Go figure. #whatawasteofmytime

I was upset, but I’m quick on my feet and I realized that although my vision didn’t pan out, I had the back window to adorn! No one is in our back yard in the wintertime - so who cares if the paint chip backing would face the back yard?

Well, every time we let Griffin in and out, a stream of cold air would whoosh in, and the hearts flipped this way and that, exposing the backs of the hearts. I was over decorating for Valentine’s Day. OVER IT.

When I realized that my dining room wall wold still look like this, I changed my mind.

I was motivated to get the space infused with at least a little color for the “holiday.”

Luckily, I was headed to Target that afternoon, and came home armed with the following:

I picked up two dinner plates striped red and pink for $3.98 and already had the red candles and Sharpies laying around. The white Sharpie paint pen didn’t work, but the silver, metallic Sharpie did a decent job. I decided to write some very traditional valentine-y words on the plates to kick it up a notch. The picture doesn’t really do it justice - it pops a bit more in real life.

I have (thankfully) forgotten all about the damn paint chip hearts and can enjoy the little love notes spicing up the dining area. Even though my great-grandpa might be shaking his head up there, I think my seventh grade art teacher would approve.