This image really made me smile: a little Bob Cratchit type man, sitting and reading a Valentine’s letter instead of a financial report (or, at least, that’s what I imagine he normally reads). Image found from Clip Art Etc: Valentine’s day.
Finally, I think this is my favourite (and most romantic) idea: a paperweight with a significant location displayed. You could use the place you first met, went on your first date, got married etc.
I used a vintage London map here, but you could always just use an ordnance survey map, or whatever’s easier to lay your hands on.
And just because I particularly like this idea, here’s the side view as well. Graphic for this found on the Graphics Fairy blog: vintage London map.
So, tell me, what would you put inside a paperweight for your Valentine?
It turns out, it’s really simple to make your own paperweights. Or, more accurately, it’s really simple to insert your own pictures into some pre-made paperweights for a brilliant personalised present. I always struggle to come up with good homemade presents for men, so this is particularly pleasing as you can put in any images you want and personalise it for whoever you’re giving it to…
It’s a really simple and quick process, but I thought I’d share a quick tutorial, anyway, in the hope it might inspire someone out there somewhere across the online ether…
Here’s what you need and how to do it:
Glass paperweights with a recess. I’ve used these 70mm round paperweights, which are the best value ones I can find online in the UK.
Some graphics (or photos). I am crazy on free vintage graphics at the moment and my favourite sites to find them are The Graphics Fairy, Clip Art ETC, Vintage Printable and the NY Public Library digital archives. Warning: you could lose hours of your day browsing these sites. For this set of paperweights, I’ve used some old scientific images (found on Clip Art ETC) which show the life cycle of the asparagus beetle. Love the images, love the title even more…
What to do
1. Unpackage your paperweight kit, which will have three parts: the glass paperweight with recess, a green bit of felt with sticky back and a cardboard circle. Check whether the cardboard circle provided fits the recess perfectly. If it does, brilliant, you can use this to draw an outline for your image. But, I’ve found with most of the kits I’ve used that the circle is either marginally too small or too big. If this is the case, draw a circle round the recess under the paperweight for the exact size you will want your image to be.
2. Print out your image onto some scrap paper. Position a paperweight over the top to check whether the image is the right size. At this point, you will probably need to re-size the images a bit to make them perfect.
3. Once you’ve got it just how you want it, make a final print onto some good paper.
4. Cut round the image carefully and put it inside the recess, facing outwards.
5. The circle of card goes on next, with the felt on top. As mentioned, the card might not be a perfect fit, so if it’s too big trim to size and put it in. If it’s too small, try and position it in the centre of the recess, but don’t worry too much, once the felt goes on top it holds it all in place. (I’m sure you weren’t worrying that much, anyway, it’s hardly a catastrophe to have a slightly small piece of card.)
6. Check, from the front, that everything is lined up as it should. All being well, peel off the back of the green felt…
7 …and stick it on.
8. Tadaaaa, all finished:
If you get the same kits that I did, they also come with quite a nice box to put the paperweights inside. I am all about presentation at the moment, so I love a rather swanky looking red box to display the finished product.