DIY Watercolor Valentine

Alright ladies... I know February can be a hectic month and there's always pressure to get your friends and loved ones something special. Even after purchasing the perfect gift, you might find yourself in need of the perfect card! So here ya go: I've created this quick and easy tutorial for creating your own watercolor valentine. 

DIY Watercolor Valentine Tutorial Via Katherine Jury

Love the card above? Shop my Valentine's Day card collection here.


Supplies: What do you need?

  1. Watercolor paper (I would recommend grabbing a large sheet of watercolor paper and cutting it down to a 5x7 in. or 4x6in. sheet.)
  2. Red watercolor paint (Feel free to use whatever color you have access to or prefer. Does your sweetie like blue? Interested in using more than one color? Go for it!)
  3. Paint palette (If you have a paint palette - great. If not, no worries. A water resistant paper plate will work just fine!)
  4. Paint brush (Only one paint brush is needed for this tutorial. I would recommend using a small, rounded tip brush that's about the size of a pencil, but any brush will do. The brush pictured in the image above is the brush I used.)
  5. Cup of water + Paper Towel (The cup should be a cup you can throw away or reuse for painting only. You might want to keep a paper towel within reach so you can dry your brush.)
  6. Cutting board (If you're starting with a sheet of watercolor paper that is bigger than the sizes suggested above, use a cutting board or scissors to cut the sheet down to your desired size.)
DIY Watercolor Valentine via Katherine Jury


Step 1: Resize paper & create painting guides

  • Cut down your sheet of watercolor paper to be 5x7 in. or 4x6in.
  • Optional: Mark lightly on the paper to denote halfway guides (For Ex: Identify the halfway point on every edge of your paper to give you a guide while painting. On the 7 in. side of the paper, create a fine mark on the 3.5 in. line to illustrate where the halfway point is on your piece of paper. I would suggest creating a small dot or tick mark that will be easy to erase once your painting has dried.)


Step 2: Create light pink mixture using a small amount of red paint + water

  • If using a watercolor tube, squirt a small (very  very very small) amount of red paint onto your paint palette. *Note: I would suggest using even less paint that what is pictured below. A little bit of red paint goes a long way!*
  • (If using a watercolor tray, lightly wet your brush, dip it in the red paint chip and transfer red paint onto your paint palette. Repeat several times to collect more red paint.)
  • Take your brush and scrap a tiny amount of paint from the pile onto your brush and transfer it to another spot on the palette to create two piles of paint, one large and one small. 

  • Clean your brush off with the paper towel and then dip it in the cup of water. Collect water with the brush and add it to the smallest pile of paint. Stir the brush in the pile of paint and keep transferring water to the mixture until it is light pink. 


Step 3: Paint Heart #1

  • Now that you have created a light pink puddle, it is time to paint!
  • Collect the pink water on you brush and hover over the watercolor paper, keeping an eye on the guides you drew. We’ll be painting two hearts on the paper, so you’ll want to place this first heart on the middle-left side of the paper. Check out my example at the top of the paper for reference.
  • Acting almost as if the brush is a pen, draw a heart on the paper. Start by drawing the outline of the heart and then fill in the shape. Once the outline is created,  you might need to re-dip your brush in the pink puddle to completely fill in the light pink heart.
  • If it isn’t perfect the first time, no worries – draw another outline of a heart that encompasses your first attempt. If you find that your heart is too barely visible or you want it to be darker, add a little bit more paint to your mixture and paint over top of your first heart.

TIP: If you are still unhappy with your heart, all hope is not lost! If the paint on the paper is still wet, use your paper towel to mop up what you've painted. Is your heart still there? Add a little bit of CLEAN water to the paper and mop up what you've painted with the paper towel.

But remember... Perfection isn't the point! A misshapen heart has character and makes your card interesting!


Step 4: Paint heart #2

  • Onto heart # 2. Use the same process that you used for creating your light pink heart, only this time, add a tiny bit more red paint to your mixture to create a darker heart. Feel free to use the same paint puddle!
  • Begin drawing your second heart on the edge of the pink heart, as pictured above. Remember drawing all those venn diagrams in primary school? You're a pro at this!
  • Keep an eye on the right-hand edge of your paper when tracing your heart so that each heart is equidistant from either edge of the paper. 

Step 5: Let paint dry + Add text

  • Watching paint dry gets a bad rap, right? Good thing the hearts take only a minute or two to dry. While your hearts are drying, be thinking about what you want your card to say. 
  • Once dry, you can add text to your card in a variety of ways! You can mix up more paint and script your message with your brush in different shades of pink. If you've just about had it with the paint brush, use a red/pink marker, sharpie or crayon. If you'd like to keep your message contained within the hearts, try adding text to your card with chalk or oil pastels! 

Finished card:

Yay; all done! I added "Love you" and "Be mine" to my card. Happy with your card? I'd love to see what you've created. I'm sure your special someone will love their hand painted valentine!

Thanks for checking out my watercolor tutorial!

Liking the card below? Shop my "Love You, Be Mine" flat card and my other Valentine cards here! (Order by Feb. 9th and receive your valentine by Feb. 13th)