Saturday, March 21, 2015

An Altered Box

Hey y'all!  I know today is Saturday and there is supposed to be a post about supplies but I'm changing it up a little bit because I wanted to share a new project with you!

Hobby Lobby had items by The Paper Studios on sale half off this week and I picked up this cute little paper mache box for a whole dollar.  I knew it would be perfect to hold earrings or some other little trinket if I could just make it pretty.  And for a buck who could honestly turn it down?  I mean, as crafters, supply hoarders, and artists.  Because my hubby could turn it down.  But not I!

My wonderful and generous friend Elizabeth is a huge supply hoarder.  I mean it borders on extreme this need to accumulate craft supplies.  Thankfully she doesn't read this blog so maybe she won't know I'm talking this way.  But she knows she has a problem!  So shhh!  Don't tell her!!!  Anyway, I do adore her and she is wonderfully generous with her oodles of stash.  She had an 8x8 paper pad from Graphic 45's Couture Collection that she let me have for this project.


I chose "Gorgeous" to be my main focal paper, "Stunning" for the inside, and bits from "Classy" and "Beautiful".  I measured my box which is 2 3/4".  I wanted to cover the inside of the top as well as all sides so of course I had a few more measurements.  Have I ever mentioned that I hate measuring things?  I do.  Math is so far from my favorite or even top ten favorite things.

I'm going to stop here for a moment and just say that I am not a papercrafter!  I have never claimed to be one.  I am a mixed media artist and often times I use papers for collage.  That being said, however, this year I am forcing myself to push past my comfort zone and try new things!  This little box is one of those things.  I know you're thinking to yourself, how hard can it be to cover a box in paper?  It's not hard but it requires more thought than my usual art process does.  This is not a slap down a layer and wing it type project.  It required thought and steps!  And I loved every moment of it!

Once I had everything measured, I cut all my bits and pieces out.  The lovely turquoise stripes for the outside, the gorgeous peacock feathers for the inside, and a few bits for the top.  It was time for the easy part - simply gluing it all in place!

Yeah, you'd think that would be the easy part.  I discovered that my paper trimmer is starting to get a little "off".  The ruler numbers and grid are beginning to fade and not all of my pieces were exactly the same height.  The length was pretty good, but I had to make a few little adjustments along the way, like trimming excess off the top that over hung the edges.  That's ok!  It's one of the million reasons why Washi Tape was invented!

I started by gluing my large peacock pieces into the bottom and top of the box using Mod Podge.  I used Mod Podge because I wanted a good strong glue and I'm out of Gel Medium.  It did the trick and dried clear which is all I truly asked for.

Once those pieces were dry, I glued the pieces for the walls in the top and bottom of the box.  I used a pair of craft tweezers to make sure I got the paper in the corners as well as I could.  There was a gap between the bottom and the walls but I wasn't too worried about it.  I'd fix it later.

I was very good about letting everything dry before adding something else.  I didn't want to accidentally move something the wrong way and it dry crooked!

After the inside was dry, I adhered the outside pieces to the top and bottom with Mod Podge.  Now, I could have theoretically cut two pieces and let them wrap around the box, but I kind of wanted an excuse to use washi tape on the corners so I saved myself the hassle of trying to add.  Sad I know, but what can I say?
Now I said that my pieces weren't quite the right height, remember?  Wielding my trusty scissors, I simply trimmed the excess off.  So my edges weren't straight and beautiful.  I did mention I was using Washi Tape.  Washi is great.  It's a fabulous cover up for those lazy hack jobs and oops I cut off too much mistakes.

I used tissue tape by Tim Holtz (Marketplace) because it had a nice vintage advertisement vibe to it.  I added it along each outer corner along the top and sides of the box.  Isn't it beautiful against that blue?

To cover the ragged edges on the bottom and top of my box, I added a strip of thin turquoise Washi by The Paper Studios.  The color goes really well with the striped and feathers and it was a little stickier than the Tim Holtz Tissue Tape and would hold up better with successive tugging on the top.

With the addition of paper and tape, the top fits very snuggly to the bottom.  Ok, that's a lie.  It fits tightly.  And is a bit of a struggle to remove the top.  As I'm going to be using this box to hold jewelry, I'm totally happy with the added "bulk".  Maybe my toddler will have too much difficulty opening it and I won't lose anything.  That's the hope anyway.

To the very top of the box, I added the lovely "Gorgeous" woman from the "Beautiful" page and a "stamp" from the "Classy" page.  I took the strip of words from the page with the woman and used it to anchor the top.  I used Glossy Accents to glue these pieces.

Remember those gaps between the walls and bottom on the inside of the box?  Remember how I said I would fix that later.  As a very last step, I took a black paint pen and simply colored in the lines.  The peacock feather paper is dark enough that the black hardly shoes and you can't see any of the box!

I let everything dry overnight et voila!  A pretty little box to hold my daily earrings, rings, and necklace!  Even my mother loves it.  And she doesn't like anything I make.

This little box was so easy (aside from the whole measuring thing) to make and only took five supplies - paper, glue, washi tape, a paper trimmer, and the box itself!  As my first ever "strictly" paper-crafting craft I am very pleased with the outcome and can see several more of these boxes in my future.  They would make great gifts for birthdays and other occasions.  Plus, they could hold brads, buttons, or ribbon on your craft table. 

I'll be back next Saturday with a true Supply Saturday post.  Until then, have a great week and Happy Crafting!

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