Card Boxes: Beautiful and Useful

Card boxes have become a popular DIY item for weddings and bridal or baby showers. Are they absolutely necessary? No. But are they pretty? Yes! And one of the main advantages of having a card box is to help protect your cards from thievery. Unfortunately, I’ve heard of this happening even at the smallest of wedding celebrations. (Okay – the thieves could run off with the entire box, but it’s a bit more noticeable!)

Here are a few pretty card box versions I’ve found on the web:

And this was the one that I made:

Supplies Needed

Boxes – I used one paper ream box and a smaller paper mache box purchased from Hobby Lobby
Exacto knife
Hot Glue Gun
Fabric – best to use a thicker fabric – mine was from the “special occassion” section at JoAnn Fabrics
Ribbon
Optional Items: wood or chipboard letters, paint, glitter, hotfix crystals

Instructions

1. Anyone who works in an office setting has access to a paper box. I  realized that with the lid it would be perfect for the large bottom box of my card box project.  I measured and cut the box down to size so that it would be perfectly square, using packaging tape to attach the end back on.  I used the same method with the lid, ending up with a square box with a fitting lid. I made sure the lid didn’t fit too snug as I’d be folding the fabric into the inside.

2. I put the small paper mache box on the lid of the bottom box and traced the outline. Then I eyeballed about a half an inch inside of the traced square, then cut away the square with a box cutter knife. There was a lip for the small box to sit on.

3. For the top box, I was using a pre-made square box with a lid. Leaving a lip in the bottom of the box, I cut out a square as big as the square I already cut in the bottom box’s  lid. I also cut a rectangular slit for the envelopes into the lid. The paper mache box was easier to cut with an exacto knife than I thought it would be! Here is a picture looking from the bottom of the small box so you can see the cuts:

4. I purchased 2 yards of a black damask fabric with a velvety design. It was 6.99/yard but was on a 30% off sale. I originally thought I wanted to cover the boxes in satin so that it would shine, but I realized that would be a disaster due to the nature of the satin — any imperfections, lumps, or hot glue bumps would show through.  I opted for this thicker material because it seemed to be somewhat stiff…plus, it is beautiful!

5. I wrapped the bottom box like a present, except I folded as much as I could under the box, and made sure any folds on the outsides were folded vertically along a corner of the box.  I hot glued around the edges of the sides once I determined how the fabric would lay on each side.

6. I placed the lid of the bottom box face down on the material and folded in/hot glued the edges into the inner part of the lid. I then cut an X into the open square and folded each triangle into the lid, gluing in place.

Box 1 Complete!

7. With the top box,  I basically repeated the same thing, except cut the X shape into the hole at the bottom as well as the card slot on the top, gluing the fabric inside. You may want to paint the inside of the box, but I found it was dark enough in there it didn’t matter much.

8. Once I had the lid and box complete, I glued the top box onto the bottom box along that lip that the top one sits on.

9. I cut the ribbon and glued it inside the card slot, then stretched it to the bottom and glued it on the underside of the large box, repeating on each side. I made a simple bow out of ribbon and hot glued that separately onto the top.

 

 

 

After completing the box, my fiance asked “How will people know that’s a card box? It looks like a present!” I needed some signage. So I picked up some little wooden letters that said “CARDS” and painted and glittered them.

The “F” on the front of my card box was made from a wood letter, silver paint, and hotfix crystals (remember how I blinged out my wedding shoes?). It was originally supposed to be a cake topper but we opted out of the traditional display cake to cut expenses.

Total Time: About 2 Hours

Total Cost: About $18 (top box and fabric + letters, I already had the ribbon and glue gun/sticks)

Oh, and one more thing — how the heck do you get the cards out? I thought of that part last….oops! So I cut a three-sided square into the bottom and because the box is thick enough, I didn’t need any reinforcements for that flap to stay closed. If it were being used repeatedly (opened and closed) I’d probably figure out a way to make sure it stayed closed.

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I used my cardbox for both my bridal shower and the wedding. Afterwards, I held onto it, not sure what I should do with it. Then a lucky friend of mine got engaged, and I reworked it with new ribbon and a monogram “K” for her:

Would you use a card box at your wedding, bridal, or baby shower?

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