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How To Make a Fake Candy Heart Prop for Valentine's Day Photography


How To Make a Fake Candy Heart Prop for Valentine's Day Photography © 2007 Liz Masoner licensed to About.com, Inc.
Almost every photographer loves to look through catalogs of photography props. That is, look until they notice the prices! Don't let the prices of professional props discourage you from using props in your photography. This do-it-yourself Valentine's Day photography prop costs about $10 in materials and only takes about 1/2 hour to make. It is designed to be similar to the candy message hearts found around Valentine's Day, only much larger.
Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: About 35 Minutes

Here's How:

  1. Paint the heart. Candy message hearts are almost always pastel colors such as white, pink, and purple with red writing. I used red paint for this one to avoid boys fussing about the color but you can use the more traditional colors if you prefer. Since we are using spray paint, be sure to wear old clothes and paint in a well-ventilated area where overspray does not matter.
  2. Once the paint is dry (takes around 30 minutes for most spray paints), use the foam letters to make your message. Using the top dip of the heart as a center line and starting with the center letters of the words will help you get the spacing right. If you cannot find the proper color letters, you can paint them as well before adhering to the heart.
  3. Enjoy!


  1. Be sure to work in a well-ventilated area when painting.
  2. Use smooth strokes when painting and multiple coats if needed. If you spray a heavy coating the paint may drip.
  3. Count the letters you need for your message when purchasing the foam letters. Some packs only have 1 each of certain letters.
  4. When you are not using the box in a photo it doubles as storage.
  5. Use a non-glossy paint to help reduce flash glare.

What You Need

  • 10" Heavy Duty Paper Mache' Heart Box
  • Pack of Self Stick Foam Letters
  • Spray Paint
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