thankful boxes tutorial, part one

did you see my Thankful Boxes tutorial on the Crate Paper blog last week?  i offered a free downloadable template and directions for assembling it, as well as a few examples of how the boxes could be used.  in Part One of my own post about them here, i will give you a recap.  on Thursday, i'll be back with Part Two which will showcase the larger gift card boxes, but i'll have a few new creations to show you, as well.

i designed these little boxes, which are roughly 2.25" x 2.25", with Thanksgiving in mind.  it’s different for everyone, but the first thing i think of when i think about fall is Thanksgiving.  that’s possibly because my birthday is right around then and, growing up, i usually got to celebrate it on Thanksgiving Day.  i always got that big, wonderful meal prepared by my grandparents and now that i’m 3000 miles away from my family, i miss it so much.  but that doesn’t mean i don’t have a lot for which to be thankful.

that’s the basis of this post…remembering to be thankful this year.   most of us will have turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie…all of that yummy goodness spread out on the table just waiting to be gobbled up by our hungry families.  but wouldn’t it be nice if we all gave thanks first?  to do just that, i designed a little envelope-box that you can fill with some small treats and “be thankful” notes.

you’re going to need the following items:

the template (you can download it here for printing)
patterned paper
scoring tool
craft knife
eraser (optional)
double-stick tape (i used Super-Tape in 1/8” width)
embellishments for decorating your boxes

i started by printing the template onto regular copy paper and cut it out.  i then chose the patterned paper(s) i wanted to use to make my Thankful Boxes.  the majority of this project features Acorn Avenue and the papers i decided on were Macadamia Diner (because it’s so pretty) and the flip side of Chestnut Boutique (because it’s neutral).

go ahead and trace the box pattern onto the backside of the patterned paper you’ve chosen.  i made small scoring “ticks” on the outside of the traced lines and scored the lines before i cut out the pattern.

i also cut the slit for the envelope flap using my ruler and craft knife.

now you are ready to cut.

this is optional, but i used my eraser to get rid of any stray pencil marks, especially on the inside flap since your guests will see the flip side of your paper when they open their boxes.  now it’s time to fold, which is easy since you’ve already done your scoring.

*important tip:  when folding, you will fold the middle scoring line the opposite way (accordion fold style) on the 2 side panels and bottom.   this technique adds a little “give” to your box and makes assembling and securing much easier.

all you have left to do is assemble your box (and decorate it, of course, but that’s the fun part!).   fold the bottom part up and adhere it to the 2 side panels.  you will want a strong, skinny adhesive for this, which is why i chose 1/8” width SuperTape.

that’s it!  your box is ready for decorating.   i found that it was easier to decorate if i put the contents inside first.  i put 2 Hershey’s Miniatures in the box, along with a note that says, “today i am thankful for...”  my guests can then write their message on the card and we can share them before dinner.

for embellishing, i made each one different but kept them simple since we have a big family and there will be several boxes to make.  a bit of string or thread wrapped around the box several times and then a little something to dress it up—a wood shape, a chipboard flower, a phrase sticker, etc.   luckily, Acorn Avenue has got you covered here with a whole bunch of wonderful goodies!  the wood shapes were my favorite, i think, because just one small piece seemed to say so much about the beauty of autumn and why there is so much to be thankful.

and in this case, i used the “hi” fabric brad from On Trend and cut off the prongs with wire cutters so that it would sit flat when i glued it down.

anything goes for decorating and, really, this box can be used for anything, too.  i made a couple of them un-Thanksgiving so i can use them to give a friend a tiny, heartfelt gift like a hand-written note, a pair of earrings or some pretty barrettes. 

and let’s not jump ahead to Thanksgiving without celebrating Halloween first, right?  simply change the colors and patterns of your paper (in this case, it’s Style from On Trend) and embellishments and you have an appropriate treat…or trick!

so there you have some cute little boxes to give as favors for your Thanksgiving feast, to pass out Halloween treats, or to give a friend a gift just because he or she is special to you.  fall is meant to be festive and i hope you've gotten a few ideas here for making it so.  and don't forget to take a moment this year to be thankful! 

if you fell in love with the Crate Paper Acorn Avenue collection, you buy it now at Two Peas.  They also have On Trend and even a bit of Sleigh Ride for sale.


join me back here on Thursday for another template for a gift card box.  i'm sure we've all given a gift card as a present before and i'll show you some packaging like these boxes that you can assemble to make gift card giving more personal.