Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Lighting Up My Heart

I have seen the most beautiful, giant heart lit up on the Tringali Iron Works building in Boonton Township for many years now. They usually put it up in January and keep it hanging through the end of February, in celebration of Valentine's Day. It seems to be a strand of lights wrapped around a giant iron heart. I've wanted one since the first time I saw it, but could never find one. Perhaps they sell them, but my guess is that they'd be way out of my modest price range.

Now, my old neighbors, Chris and Dan, have a cute neon sign that reads "Love" in script, that they place inside their storm door each year for Valentine's Day, and I happily would have taken that as a substitute for the iron, lit heart. After years of searching, I've found nothing.

As W and I were driving by the iron works building the other day, I pointed to the heart and told him that I wanted to make something similar. I knew where to get the lights, but what could I wrap them around?

"You could use coat hangers," he easily replied.

Coat hangers. Brilliant! Why hadn't I thought of that. He explained how I could do it, and made it seem easy enough. However, yesterday I asked him to get me started by straightening out one of the hangers. He did it with ease, and I decided that it would be a great project to finish while I was stuck in the house.

Here is how it began. W's white hanger, and my black hanger, straightened out then twisted together to form a heart. 

The wires are taped together at the meeting points first, for added support,
with pink duct tape. (The white wire is hard to see against the white desk.)
Next, I decided to make the heart thicker by taping the whole thing up with pink duct tape. I was going to do double or triple wire, but molding the wire's curves is harder than you might think, and I wanted the curves to stay sweet. It is going to be wrapped in white wire with red lights, but I wanted it to still look lovely underneath.

I put my favorite cards inside the heart's opening, to add some love.
The last step will be to wrap it in lights. The lights haven't arrived yet, but I couldn't wait to share my project with you. I will post a photo once it's lit and hanging.

Here it is, lit and hanging. A heart made with one white coat hanger, W's, and one black coat hanger, mine. Wrapped with lights, lit, and hung on my son's birthday. I feel the love!

What will you be doing to decorate your home for Valentine's Day this year? Anything crafty?


  1. What a great idea! That is so cute, post pics when you are finished :)

  2. I know exactly of the iron heart you speak of & I too have always admired it. It is so hard to find Valentine's decor especially items that light up & bring us warmth in the February chill. I can't wait to see your finished creation!


  4. I will! For sure. As soon as the lights come, I will wrap the wires, hang the heart, and take the photos.

    Tray, the heart is up over at the Iron Works. It looks so beautiful.

  5. Added the photo of it lit! Hope you like it.

  6. That looks great!!!!! Thanks for posting, I love it!!!

  7. I LOVE LOVE LOVE it! Awesome!

  8. Thank you ladies! OMG. It's different than what I expected, but I still love it. Thanks for the compliments.