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Thursday, May 12, 2011

How to Decoupage a Box

It was my Mum's 60th birthday a few weeks ago (on Mothers' Day to be exact) and I decided give her a handmade present, as I know she loves things I make more than anything I could buy. Well, that's what she says..!

I thought a keepsake box would be a perfect gift, so I had a look at ways I could make one and came across decoupage. This is basically where you cut out pictures and glue them to a wooden or cardboard box, before covering with layers of glue for a clear finish.

Anyway, here are some photos of the process:

Here's the cardboard box - just a plain brown cardboard box from Hobbycraft.

Then I needed to decorate it with paper, so I screwed up a piece of white A4 and then dabbed some brown pigment ink on it. The idea was to give it a kind of antique look... This was to cover the lid.

I covered the sides in pink and green paper and again, stained the edges with brown ink:

I wanted to use my own photos, so printed them on a laserjet printer and carefully cut them out. As well as the flowers, I used some family photos too:

Here's the lid covered in the screwed up and stained paper:

Then I arranged and stuck the photos on the top and sides. I used Mod Podge to do this, as I was following American tutorials, but I think you can use any PVA, which is probably cheaper.

And here is the finished box:

Once you've stuck the pictures in place, you just keep brushing over the glue, letting it dry, before adding another layer. I did about 5 layers of glue to give the box a varnished appearance. The idea is that you keep going until you can't feel the edges of the images anymore. My lid wasn't completely smooth as I'd scrunched up the paper, but it turned out pretty well!

A couple more pics:

A close-up. You can see a young Mum and Dad here! And myself and my brothers on my wedding day...

Oh, nearly forgot to mention the inside. You can just see the felt I used. I simply glued it to the sides and for the bottom I covered some quilt batting I had left over from my memo boards.

And this pic shows my grandparents and my mum when she was little, Tiggy, the gorgeous labrador we used to have and my two children.

So, there we have it; a very basic tutorial on how to decoupage a box. It's really simple and makes a lovely gift, so give it a go!

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