Saturday, September 19, 2009

Mailbox Tutorial - yes it's finally here!!!

You asked for it and here it is - my tutorial to make the mailbox from this post. I've managed to fine tune it a little along the way too - am much happier with the finish on this one!!!

I have found one of the BEST things for making boxes is the card that comes in each pack of SU designer paper to stabilise it. The card is 12x12, white and flexible, yet strong - so make sure you save this when your DP arrives!

If ANY of these instructions don't make sense then PLEASE let me know...I'm a very visual person so have included lots of pics. There are a few steps but it's not too hard to we go.

Mailbox Requirements

* 1 sheet 12x12 SU DP stabilising card or light weight card
* 2 sheets of co-ordinating DP - one is the outside cover and one is the lining.
* 4 larger beads
* 12mm & 6mm double sided sticky tape
* 1/4" Grosgrain ribbon to either contrast or co-ordinate with your DP
* 4 1/2"" x 3 1/4" piece CS to co-ordinate with your DP
* 2 rhinestone brads
* silver cord
* Adhesive - I used a glue stick and Pritt power gel
* Embellishments

First cut 2 pieces of card from your 12x12 stabilising card -

12" x 3 1/2" and 10 5/8" x 4 7/8"

Keep the rest of the card - you'll be using it later.

Take the 12" x 1/3" piece and score 3 1/2" in from each end - this is your base and ends.

Score the other piece 3/4" in from each end - this is the archway.

Using 12mm double sided tape stick the scored end on the archway piece to the middle section of your base piece.

Repeat on the other side to form the archway.

The 2 flaps will become the back and the door.

Lay one open end of your mailbox down onto the leftover piece of card and trace the curve to create a template for the back of your box. Cut this out and use it to create the curve on ONE end of your mailbox. This is the back of the box and doesn't need to be as exact as the front - but it stabilises the box better to create a better fitting door!

Use scraps cut from the leftover piece of thin card to make tabs to stick the back too and stick on with double sided tape.

Carefully stick the back up making it fit as neatly as possible. Don't worry about small gaps - these are inevitable and will be covered later anyway!

Your box is now a little more stable so it's time to create the front door template. I traced the curve again onto some Whisper White CS, cut it out and then folded it in half vertically to make sure it was symmetrical. Hold it up to the box opening to make sure it fits well. Use your new template to cut the door piece to shape.

Now it's time to cover and line your box!

Cut your outside DP to 6" x 12" and stick onto box using a glue stick - allowing a small overlap at the front and the rest at the back. There will also be overlaps that go under the box.

Cut slits in the 2 end overlap pieces and stick down - you'll need to trim off the corner pieces that go under the box. Stick the tabs down.

Cut a backing piece from your DP using your template and stick down - I found it best to cut just slightly within the template tracing line to get a neat fit.

Using the front template trace the DP for the front door onto some DP. Cut it out leaving approx 3/4" margin all the way around - so you can "wrap" the excess around the door. Glue to the door and then cut notches all around the curved edge. Remove the corner pieces at the base of the door before glueing down the tabs

Wrap some 6mm double sided tape around the base of the box from one the edge of the door right around to the other. Use this to apply your 1/4" grosgrain ribbon.

Wrap another piece of 6mm tape from under the box, over the arch and under the box on the other side - do this on both ends of your box. Attach more ribbon to neaten these edges.

Before lining I recommend you add your rhinestones - oops I forgot on mine. I had to peel back the DP on the on the inside of the door and I glued a 1 1/4" circle of DP over the brad ends on the inside of the box under the top - just in case you do an oopsie too -LOL.

I marked where I wanted to add my rhinestones and used my small crop-a-dile hole cutter to punch the holes. I wrapped a piece of silver cord around the door brad before securing it. I used a pair of tweezers to hold the brad on top while I set the legs - this is so it doesn't sit flush to the box and the cord can be wrapped easily to close the door.

Tie the cord into a bow and trim off excess. You may want to dab a touch of glue onto the cut ends of the cord so it doesn't unravel over time.

Lining the Box

Cut a piece your contrasting DP 5 1/4" x 10 5/8" - this is for the inside of the arch. Score at 4 7/8" along the long edge. Clip to the score line - this end will be to the back of the box with the clips being stuck to the back.. Score one end at 3/4" and fold. Check fit on inside of box and use your bone folder to mark where the fold needs to be on the other end.

Remove from box and fold the other end. Remove the corners where the folds meet. I used double sided tape on the front edge and the end pieces. Place the lining into the box and position before gently removing the tape covering - do the arch first and then the ends along the base. You don't need to glue the tabs at the back down - you'll be sticking a piece over the top.

Using your front template cut 2 end pieces - cut 1 a little within the lines and check for fit at the back of the box before trimming if necessary and cut the other one longer so the end will go inside the box. Glue down when you are happy with the fit, scoring where the fold is on the door. I also suggest you open and close the door a few times to make sure the DP is sitting right before the glue dries.

Cut another piece of DP 4 3/4" x 3 1/4" to glue to the inside base - but once again check the fit before gluing!

Glue your piece of 4 1/2"" x 3 1/4" CS to the base of the box to cover all the DP edges.

I used my Touch markers to colour some large white beads to co-ordinate. I had these in my stash but you could buy some to match.

I glued them onto the base of my box for "feet" using Pritt gel glue. I found the best way was to use 2 of my inkpads to support the box while it was upside down while I set the beads and the glue dried.

YOU'RE NEARLY DONE - all you have to do now is have some fun decorating your box!!!

If you do make one I'd LOVE to see it - just try NOT to show me up - LOL. I'll be back soon with my box all dolled up to show you - just haven't quite made up my mind what I'll be doing to it yet!

Have fun



Tracey Feeger said...

Gosh that is lots of work but I am definately willing to give it a go. Thanks so much for putting up the tutorial.

sandra said...

Thanks for tutorial!
This one is fantastic!
I must try make one.
Can't wait to glue myself up.

Cheryl said...

FANTASTIC Debbie and an awesome tutorial,I just hope I get a chance to make one one

Lisa Hjulberg said...

Yowser! What an awesome tutorial!!! Dare I attempt such a thing?

It's finally Saturday! I'm hoping to get some time to email you to catch up. Paul his the road this morning with his golf team, so I must rally the troops on my own. Wish me luck!

Hugs and love,

Chris (Wellnifty) said...

Brilliant tutorial Debbie, thanks for sharing

Chris xx

Mandy said...

Gorgeous mail box and fab tutorial, thank you
hugs Mandy xx

Deb A said...

Absolutely fantastic Deb. Looking forward to buying more supplies today!!! Lol. Deb

Lynda S said...

Deb...all your hard wk was v much worth it...thanks for a great's gone in my gunna file to be tackled when kids and anarchy are not around..LOL!!!

Alicia said...

Wow! This looks very professional. You have done a great job on the tutorial. It looks kinda tricky to make - shows off how clever you are.
Alicia xx

Kristine said...

What a CUTE and bright fun mailbox Debbie! LOVE THIS!! :)

Kristine said...

I remember when it seemed everyone was buying mini mailboxes at the Target $1 spot here in the US, but MY Target never had them :( And I had to drive about an hour and 15 min. one way to go check! LOL. PHooey. Anyway, I'm so glad you posted this and your tutorial--now even I can make one of these!! WOOOHOOO!! :)

Leigh said...

Great tutorial Debbie. You are very clever.

Sharon said...

What a great tutorial Debbie and the mail box it self is fantastic. Thanks for sharing your expertise with all of us.

Take Care

Sharon (Stitches on Mars) said...

Fantastic Debs,
Now the only excuse I have is NO paper Hee hee hee
I have a feeling you may know where I can get some though ;)
Lots of love

Norma said...

Debbie, excellent tutorials. Precise instructions, but thanks for all the pictures--love them as they will certainly help me. I will give this a try, but looks like I will need lots of time.

Ramona Michaluk said...

Thanks for sharing your project with us - great tutorial! Will definitely have to try this one too.

(If mine works out, I'll show it to you.) Another great idea to try out!


Sue said...

Wow, Deb, you put alot of work into your tutorial. Lots of pictures is a good thing, nothing more frustrating than trying to figure something out without a visual. Thanks for doing the tutorial, will have to try one of these soon.

Merry said...

What a wonderful tutorial and terrific project.

Alison said...

This is a fantastic tutorial for a gorgeous project (no wonder it took you a while to put it together). I definately want to try one of these.

Liam said...

Great work Debbie. You made it look easy. it must have taken you a while to get the tutorial up. thanks for all your time and effort. Love it. will have to try it out.


Andrea L - EnchantINK said...

What a great job you did on this tutorial ... TFS ... will have to try this one. Hugs, Andrea xxx