How to Craft a Penguin Out of Hearts

Kids Will Love Making These Paper Birds

group of paper penguins

The Spruce / Rita Shehan

Project Overview
  • Working Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 1 penguin
  • Skill Level: Kid-friendly

Paper penguins are easy to assemble and make lovely craft decorations or greeting card designs. Did you know that Valentine's Day cards often feature penguins? Penguins are one of the few animals in nature that mate for life and are a symbol of love and fidelity.

There are two options for making this penguin craft. You can cut the entire paper penguin by hand, or you can download free digital die cut files (place into your digital die cutter software) and cut them on an electronic digital die cut machine. If you use an electronic die cutter, your penguin will have precise, even edges, but it is possible to get a cute penguin by cutting the paper templates entirely by hand with scissors. Most older kids will be able to make paper penguins quickly and without difficulty, but younger children might need the help of their parent or teacher.

Be creative when making these penguin decorations! Experiment with colors. No one says that you can't have a blue, green, or even purple penguin.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Pen or pencil
  • Craft glue or a glue stick
  • Scissors
  • Printer (if cutting the penguin pieces by hand)
  • Digital die cut machine (if cutting by machine)


  • Card stock or craft foam in 3 colors (we went with black, orange, and white)
  • PDF template and digital die cut file download


  1. Cut Out Penguin Parts

    When using an electronic die cut machine, do the following:

    1. Cut a black oval-shaped penguin body.
    2. Cut a large white heart.
    3. Cut two white eyeballs.
    4. Cut two black pupils.
    5. Cut two orange hearts for feet.
    6. Cut one small heart for the beak.

    If you are cutting the penguin by hand:

    1. Print out the PDF template.
    2. Lay the template parts onto the appropriate colored card stock paper.
    3. Trace around the edges with a pen or pencil.
    4. Cut out the penguin parts with scissors.
    paper penguin parts
    The Spruce / Rita Shehan
  2. Begin Assembling the Paper Penguin

    1. Apply glue to the back of the large white heart.
    2. Place the heart onto the oval black paper shape.
    3. Press the white paper heart shape down firmly with your hand to assure glue adhesion.
    heart on oval
    The Spruce / Rita Shehan
  3. Add the Penguin Beak and Feet

    1. The large orange paper hearts will be the feet. Add glue to the backs of the two larger orange hearts and place them at forty-five-degree angles on the bottom of the penguin's body.
    2. The little orange paper heart will be the penguin's beak. Add glue to the back of the smaller heart and place onto the white paper heart just below the middle point.
    beak and feet
    The Spruce / Rita Shehan
  4. Finish Your Penguin by Gluing on Eyes

    1. Glue the black paper circles onto the small white paper circles with craft glue or a glue stick to make the penguin's eyes.
    2. Paste the eyes in place with craft glue or a glue stick, using the above photo for guidance.

    Your penguin is now finished and ready to be used as a decorative element on a greeting card, refrigerator magnet, bookmark, or as a craft decoration.

    Make a Penguin Card

    To make your penguin into a card, grab a piece of letter-sized construction paper. Fold it in half and glue your heart penguin to the front of it. Add an appropriate sentiment by hand with a marker, gel pen, or stamp to finish!

    paper penguin
    The Spruce / Rita Shehan