How to make a gift box

By on December 18, 2011

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I’ve always liked putting gifts into elegant boxes. I remember watching the movie ‘Splash!’ as a little girl and loved the scene where Tom Hanks gives Daryl Hannah a gift and she says, “Its beautiful!” thinking that the gorgeous box with a ribbon round it is the actual present and not just the wrapping. Since then I’ve tried to make my gift packaging as lovely as what’s inside. This box is for the candle I made for my friend Charlotte’s birthday. My first step was to measure the candle’s width and height; as they were quite similar I decided to make the base and sides the same size, and leave space to pack the candle with tissue paper.

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Using medium weight card, I blocked out the base and sides in a cross shape. I also marked flaps on each edge of two of the side panels.

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With a sharp cutting tool, I cut round the edges and then cut a slit at the bottom of the flaps.

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If I were using decorative card or only wanted a simple box, I wouldn’t bother covering it, but as I had this very glamorous paper I thought I’d use it to create a glossy finish.

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Spray mount gives a smart finish, but DON”T use it near your cutting board because it is a pain in the bottom to get off. Make sure you have plenty of newspaper laid down, place the card on the paper with the marked sides up and spray an even coating on it.

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With the covering paper lying wrong side up and flat, place the sprayed surface of the card on top and press to make sure it is stuck down evenly.

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Then with a sharp cutter, trim round the edges.

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Now lightly score where the card is going to fold. I use a ruler to make sure the folds are straight; the back of a knife pressed gently makes a slight impression that allows the card to bend.

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Fold over the side panels and flaps and you will see the box take shape. Fold it into a cube and hold it in place with your hands. If there are any mistakes and the top edges are uneven, now is the time to fix them. Simply mark the differences with a pencil and trim with your cutting knife.

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Glue takes too long to dry, so double-sided sticky tape is the best way to hold it together . Make sure all four flaps have a length of tape on, then remove the backing and stick to the side panels.

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Here’s the bottom half of the box with the candle inside, wrapped in pretty pink tissue.

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To make the lid, add 2 mm to the dimensions of the base and width of the sides so the lid fits over the lower part of the box. In this box, the depth of the side panels of the lid is roughly a quarter of the height of the base. Make the lid the same way as the bottom. I used cut-off pieces of card and paper to make a gift tag and punched a hole in it. I then took a long length of ribbon, placed the middle of the length over the top, ran it down to the base, twisted it underneath and tied it in a knot at the top. I then threaded the gift tag on…

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Knotted the ribbon over the tag…

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and tied it in a flamboyant double bow! It makes me feel all warm inside to think that my little box might be used to store Charlotte’s nick nacks or be passed on to someone else with another gift inside.

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