In this tutorial, you will learn how to make Valentines Day cards that light-up. Give your Valentine something special and unique while learning about simple circuits and the basics of electricity.
This project is based on paper circuits which uses conductive copper tape, LEDs and a battery to bring your card to life.
Once complete, you can use the concepts learned to create your own custom light-up card.
Project Time: 15 minutes
- Conductive Copper Tape
- Transparent Craft Tape
- (3) LEDs Red
- (1) CR2032 Coin Cell Battery
- Project Template
Need the materials for this project? We have a complete paper circuit starter kit & ebook available. This kit comes with the materials needed for 10 paper circuit projects. The ebook has 45 projects w/ printable templates.
Step 1 – Print Project Templates
To begin, you will need to download and print the Valentines Day project templates. This project is 2 pages and it’s best to do 2-sided printing on one sheet of paper. This project will still work with 2 sheets of paper if your printer doesn’t offer 2-sided printing.
For two-sided printing, view your printer’s properties for the settings.
Once properties is open, select the “Print on both sides” option and then choose “Flip over”.
Step 2 – Create The Circuits
Now it’s time to create the circuits using conductive copper tape. Apply copper tape to all of the areas in brown on the template. Try to fold the copper tape at the corners versus cutting it. Keeping the tape in a single piece will increase its conductivity and will ensure the LEDs light.
Learn how to fold the copper at the corners by viewing our post on paper circuit basics.
Step 3 – Fold The Template
Before we add the LEDs, it’s a good idea to fold the template now so the circuit lines up properly.
Step 4 – Add LEDs To Circuit
Now it’s time to add the LEDs to your light-up Valentines Day card. Begin by bending both legs of the LED at a 90 degree angle. Be sure to remember which leg was the LONG (+) leg. The long leg is positive and will go on the side marked (+) on the template.
Tape both legs of the LED securely to the copper. Press and rub the transparent tape so you ensure that the legs are making solid contact.
Step 5 – Add Battery To Template
Tape (1) coin cell battery with the negative (-) side facing down to the grey circle. Tape only the edge of the battery down to the paper. The middle needs to be exposed so the copper tape can make contact with the top of the battery.
Step 6 – Happy Valentines Day !
Fold the project template in half and make small cuts in the hearts where the LEDs are. Try making small “X’s” so the LEDs can fit through. Push the “PRESS” button to see your Valentines Day card light-up.
BONUS – “You Complete Me”
Tell your special someone that they complete your “circuit” by making this light-up card.
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