Saturday, January 12, 2013

Homemade Scrapbooking Paper Boxes

When I first got into scrap booking many years ago I went a little crazy purchasing the books of coordinating scrap booking paper bundles (especially when they went on sale for 50% off). Well, now that we are more in the world of digital photos I had a significant halt in my scrap booking. I rarely ever even print photos anymore. So I have looked for crafts and ideas for my scrap booking paper. One of my favorite projects is making small paper boxes out of it. It takes a little bit of time, but it is a really neat way to get a personalized theme for events. I have done several baby shower gift boxes that incorporated the theme of the shower.

My favorite box I have ever made, which I have no photo for, was a solid blue bottom made of card stock, a white and blue water drop scrap book paper for the top, then a small yellow rubber ducky hot glued to the top of it! After the box was filled, I took a paper punch with baby feet and went around the outside of the top lid and poked holes so you could see through to the solid card stock under neath when the lid was on.  I also added curled ribbon around the box.

Anyway I digress, these boxes can be used as treat boxes, gift boxes for small items or gift cards, or neat storage for small items. I hope you enjoy the pictures because it was time consuming to take them and upload them all!

Supplies Needed:
-1 Scrap booking Paper-square NOT rectangular
-1 Card Stock(for a more sturdy bottom, not required)
OR 2 Scrap booking paper
-Pencil (when using it use as light a mark as possible so it won't show through)
-Large and Sturdy Straight edge (I tape two pieces of card stock together since I already have those materials out) A 12 inch ruler is not long enough on the diagonal of regular scrap booking paper.
-Invisible Tape (double sided makes for a cleaner finished look)

Step 1: Turn the scrap booking paper you are going to use design side down. Draw an "X" from corner to corner. Precision at this step will set up the success of the rest of the box, so don't eye-ball it! Some people have skipped drawing an "X" and opted to fold the paper in creases to see the diagonals. This method will leave your finished product without those beginning creases on the top of the lid. This is a link to Wikihow of how NOT to fold the box (in my humble opinion)-plus it looks harder than my method and looks way less crisp Paper Box Fail.

 Step 2: After you folded in each corner to the intersection of the "x", your paper looks like  a smaller version of the original square you started with. Now, with only two of the corners still meeting in the middle, fold two sides of the paper together so it looks "hot dog" style. Unfold the new "hot dog" and put the opposite two corners in the middle and repeat to make them a "hot dog" too.

Step 3: Unfold EVERYTHING so it is back to its original size. Pick two opposite corners of the paper and put the tips in to the middle of your drawn "x". Using your scissors, cut the two parallel lines all the way until your main square on a side that still has the point in its original position. Do the same thing for the opposite side. If you look at the second photo below you will see exactly which two lines on each side to cut (total of four cuts). You can go ahead and make sure your paper is flat and tape down the two points that have met in the middle (I didn't in the photo but should have).

Step 4: Following the folds that have already been made, flip up one of the edges that is already pointing in toward the "x" and hold it up in the position of the side of your box. Taking one of the cut sides, fold the small flap you just cut in toward the other side. You are going to do this on both sides. The remaining piece that is left will fold up and over holding together all the sides. Pictures are worth a thousand words for this step. It is not as difficult once you see what I mean. Here is an alternative example of Uncut Paper Box Folding from the blog of  "scraps of Jacki's Life". She has creases in her final product, I'm just referring to her method of folding the box together without cutting into the paper.

Step 5: Repeat step 4 with the last remaining edge. All of the points should come together evenly on the inside lid of the box. The long piece left outside already has creases to perfectly fold against the framework you are holding and meet with the other points in the bottom. If you have double sided tape, place the tape between the layers of paper so it can not be seen. Do this for each of the four flaps for the most secure hold. If you only place one piece of tape through the four way intersection the rest of the paper will be more free to move around as you manipulate the box.

We have now made the top half of the box! The instructions are going to be the same for the bottom half. Some people recommend trimming two sides of the paper you are using for the bottom half by a very very small amount so the finished size is smaller than the top. If you are using very thick card stock for both pieces or don't want to manipulate the lid to fit, this would be a good option. Personally, I use just paper for the top and card stock for the bottom, so I have no problems manipulating the top slightly to get it over the bottom. If once you have the lid over the bottom you might see gaps in the sides of the lid.  You can take it back off and put double stick tape where the gaps were (see an example of a minor gap below). Odd shaped objects inside the box or full and heavy boxes will gap more than if they are empty or light weight.

Alternative 1: You must have paper in the shape of a square for this method, but for a much tinier "jewelry" sized box you can cut your original scrap booking paper into quarters and follow the same method. You will need to make your creases very deliberate for this because there are more folds in a smaller amount of space.

Alternative 2: If you want or need to use scrap booking paper for the bottom of the box but you need it to be sturdy, you can add a piece of card stock, note card, or other thicker paper between the top layer and the points that make the inside surface of the box.


  1. Nice paper made boxes. I like this design.

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