Pleated Christmas hearts

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Various pleated Christmas hearts

Pleated Christmas hearts (Danish: Julehjerte) are Danish, Norwegian, and north German crafts, commonly used as Christmas ornaments.[1]


The exact age and origin of the tradition of making paper hearts is unknown, but the oldest known pleated Christmas hearts were made by the Danish author Hans Christian Andersen in 1860. However, as Andersen's heart has no handle, it seems unlikely it could have been used as a Christmas tree ornament. That pleated heart is today located in the Hans Christian Andersen Museum in the city of Odense in Denmark. It is documented, however, that Andersen did make decorations for Christmas trees, and that the predecessors of the pleated Christmas hearts were made from wicker baskets.[citation needed]

The oldest known guide to making pleated Christmas hearts is found in the Official Nordic handicraft Journal (1871),[citation needed], and the oldest pleated Christmas heart (from 1873) is preserved at the National Museum of Denmark, in Copenhagen.[citation needed] But it was still some 40 years before the pleated Christmas hearts became more widespread.

It is believed[by whom?] that kindergartens[where?] from around 1910 started spreading the use of the pleated Christmas hearts, which were made from glossy paper in order to enhance the children's creative abilities, patience, and fine motor skills.[citation needed]

Pleated books[edit]


  1. ^ "Hjerter og glaskugler til jul from". (in Danish). Retrieved July 30, 2009.

External links[edit]