Sunday, June 28, 2009

Card Box instructions

This weekend I taught a workshop to some close friends where I took the My Acrylics organizer and turned it into a card box to hold greeting cards. This particular one has a very cool nautical theme but you could, of course, change the box to fit any theme you want just by choosing different paper, stamps and embellishments. First you need an acrylic organizer.

Next, choose the paper you want, I chose Majestic Blue, isn't that a great name? All measurements ahead are in inches. The front uses the compass pattern paper, cut it 6 1/4 by 4 1/4. Cut the cranberry (does not come with this paper set) 6 x 4 and cut the map pattern paper 2 x 6. Use your circle cutter and cut a colonial white circle 2 1/4 in diameter. Cut a cranberry cardstock circle 2 1/2 in diameter. Cut an outdoor denim circle 2 5/8 in diameter (not shown).

Distress all the pieces with your sponge and desert sand ink.

Take a piece of magic mesh, if you own some, put it on the small circle and pounce desert sand ink right through the mesh. If you don't have magic mesh, just pounce color on it without it.

On the back of the map pattern paper attach two pieces of twill, long enough that they can be tied in a knot on the front of the paper, trim as needed. I used tombow to hold the twill down. Attach the cranberry paper to the compass pattern.

Tie the knot on the right hand side, trim excess then glue piece down to the cranberry paper about 1/4 from bottom.

Attach the white circle to the cranberry to the outdoor denim, then put the whole thing on the left hand side of the card. On the right hand side, stamp a title for your card box.

I came across a problem when preparing to show my girlfriends this project. I misplaced or downright lost my New Horizons stamp set. I asked all my fellow consultants and couldn't locate one anywhere in time so I was forced to go to the store and buy a stamp set that wasn't Close to my Heart. I haven't done that in over two years because I had no need. Up until just a year ago I had never even used acrylic stamps at all so I wasn't even sure if I could find what I needed. I did find a set of nautical stamps that were close to what I needed but, unfortunately, I found something else too...the difference between Close to my Heart stamps and other acrylic stamps. My upline had always told me that she has no problem telling her customers who want other acrylic stamps besides CTMH to go ahead and try the others knowing that they would find out the difference quickly. She was right. The stamp set I bought was from a very well-known stamp company and I expected at least similiar quality as my CTMH heart stamps but I was sadly mistaken. From the moment I opened these stamps I was disappointed. First of all they didn't come with any sponge-like cushion that our CTMH stamps do. Secondly I could barely peel the stamps off their carrier sheet. They felt very flimsy and I was truly afraid I was going to rip them. When I finally pried the stamp off, it didn't stick well to my block, it fact I couldn't tell that there was anything thing on the stamp that would make it cling to my block but I did the best I could. I had nothing but trouble with getting the stamp to make a good impression, even using my own sponge cushion. I stamped and re-stamped to try to make it work and then just had to choose from the best of the bad impressions to make my card box. So, the moral to this story is that I'm sticking with Close to my Heart!! Anyway, I hope you are lucky enough to know where your New Horizons set is or have another great Close to my Heart stamp set to use so let's keep going. Using cranberry, outdoor denim and bamboo inks, stamp the lighthouse 3 times.

Cut out the cranberry lighthouse, leaving about 1/16 of an inch border all around the edges.

Out of the outdoor denim lighthouse cut just the water. Glue it onto the cranberry lighthouse. Cut out the "sand" on the bamboo lighthouse and glue that on the cranberry lighthouse (not shown).

Attach the lighthouse to the front of your circles. I recommend you do not use pop up dots. Because you'll be handling your card box a lot, you don't want to have the lighthouse piece get bent. Using tombow, glue this whole piece to the front of your box, isn't it great!??

For the sides of the box you need to cut the blue swirl paper 6 x 4 1/4 (twice, one for each side). Cut six strips of the cranberry cardstock 1 x 6.

Cut the colonial white paper into a circle 2 inches in diameter, cut the map patterned paper into a circle 2 1/4 inches in diameter. You need 4 of each of those circles. (not shown)
Distress them (optional). Using an embossing tool and a trimmer with a groove in it, draw little lines all along the entire length of the cranberry strips about 1/4 apart, turn them over and sand them so the white core shows through. (not shown due to blurry photograph, lol)

I had to use what I could from the non-CTMH set I bought so I chose the shells here, if you have the New Horizons set, use the life preserver stamp and choose one of the three colors to ink it with. You'll need to stamp two and then cut them out. If you are not into cutting much you could stamp directly onto the circles you cut for the sides. I put one set of shells and one boat on each side, reversed.

For the second set of circles stamp two cranberry and two outdoor denim boats.

Cut out the sail on the outdoor denim boats and glue to the cranberry boats.

Now, put the colonial white circles on the map patterned circles. Glue the shells and boats to the circles. Attach the dry embossed cranberry strips to the outdoor denim paper as shown. Add the circles centered. Do this for both sides and then attach to the sides of the boxes. Tombow or glue dots work great.

Now for the back of the box, and, by the way, you do not need to cover every side like I did. Anyway, you need to cut the compass patterned paper 6 by 4 1/4, the blue swirl paper 5 x 3 1/4 and the cranberry cardstock 2 by 6. Use the dry embossing technique again to make the lines on the cranberry cardstock, it makes the whole thing look weathered like a beach house.

Attach the three pieces like this, very simple.

Go through your button stash (if you need more, click here), and find ones that match your paper, shells would be cool here too. Tie your buttons with waxy flax that is bamboo colored. Tie the buttons with it and attach them to the center of the cranberry cardstock in a line, use glue dots.

Using glue dots or tombow, attach to the back of the box.

*I changed these instructions a bit from my original post to make the dividers larger."
Inside of the box you need separators with labels that tell what kinds of cards you have in there.
I cut about 12 of them, you can do more or less. Cut the colonial white paper 6 x 5. Using your leftover paper from above or other matching paper from your set, cut 12 pieces 4 x 6. Finally cut some matching cardstock, I used a crystal blue cardstock, cut 12 pieces 1 x 2 or 2 x 2. Those will be your labels.

After distressing, glue the patterned paper flush with the bottom of the colonial cardstock. Stamp the labels with the titles you like. I recommend the set Say It In Style, it had more than enough labels on it for this card box.

Here's the inside of the box completed. You can see that my dividers don't stand up much higher than my cards so you might want to add that inch I mentioned above.

Finally, to complete the nautical look I found some thin rope and I put a line of Liquid Glass on both sides of the handle and carefully wrapped the rope around it then let it dry. It's very secure due to the liquid glass. That's it, a fun, easy card box for you!


  1. Love how you decorated your card box. And wrapping the handle with the rope was just the perfect finishing touch. :)

  2. this is a great idea! I have one of these sitting around empty and wasn't sure what to do with it.

  3. This is a great tutorial....what work you put into completing came out great...