Saturday, May 12, 2012

Gift Boxes Simply Repurposed

I know I've been scarce the past two weeks, but I'm popping in today for a great repurposing project & quick gift idea.  The other day I was drinking some tea my MIL sent me when I got to looking at the box, thinking it would make great packaging for the Dark Chocolate Edamame (from Trader Joes) I wanted to add to my Mother's Day gifts. 

Now I should mention that I do have a Cricut that can cut quite a few boxes, but I really like doing things from near scratch as well...and repurposing/recycling projects are my favorite (if you hadn't guessed).  So, instead of throwing away the tea box, I carefully opened it up at the seam where it was glued together and made a template by drawing around the box onto 12"x12" white cardstock, and cut it out. 
Christmas Tea Box -- ribbon has been removed (and repurposed on another card)

12" x 12" white cardstock -- dotted lines are for score lines
Then using the original box as a guide, I used my ruler to make light pencil lines where the score lines should go and added darker dotted lines (over the lighter pencil lines) to show where to score.  I used my score board to score the template and made sure it would form the packaging correctly (without adding any adhesive).  This is now the template I'll be keeping for future boxes. 

NOTE:  I could have used the original box as a template, but I find the original packaging can be distracting when trying to follow score lines and cut lines.  Also, I had already cut the panel off one side of the box -- I like keeping tea fresh in canisters, etc., and I include a snippet of the tea info with it. 

Template cut out and ready to be scored

Template scored & folded - left tabs will hold the adhesive

Using the template, I drew around the deco cardstock (CS) I chose for the boxes and cut them out.  Instead of drawing on the score lines, I laid the template over top of the deco CS and scored them both together.  If you choose, you can draw light pencil lines on your deco CS and score them individually. 
SCORING TIP:  Because of the odd shape of the CS once cut, it makes it difficult to line up on your score board.  I found an easier way to do this by laying down your ruler at the bottom of your CS, and lining up where you'll begin scoring with a particular number on the score board (ie. 4"), with where the score line should end on your CS set to the same measurement on your ruler (ie. 4").  I like to use Tim Holtz Ideaology Ruler because it is exact, without any lead-space on the front end of the ruler.  I also use the Martha Stewart Score Board because I like the 1/8" spacing and the right side of the board being open.
(If this score tip doesn't make sense, I'll try to update this posting with a YouTube video this week.)

Note the 4" score line matches both top & bottom measurements

**If you look at the image above, the 4" score line at the top of the score board lines up with the 4" line on the ruler at the bottom. To make sure your ruler will give you straight lines and match up with the score board lines, hold the ruler flush against the top & left side of the score board -- your measurements should match up.  This will help give you accuracy when scoring mis-shaped objects.**

For the boxes I made, I only glued the side seam together, and folded the bottom of the box without adding adhesive.  That way, if they want to reuse the box later (more repurposing) for another's gift, they can open up the bottom, fold the box flat and store it for use another time.  I forgot to take a picture of the contents, but I used cello bags for my Chocolate Edamame and added a tag. 
The finished gift boxes

Other ideas you could fit in these boxes are mini purse notebooks, deco tissue packs, bath beads, soaps, jewelry, gift cards, etc. (if you use heavier items, I'd recommend adding adhesive to the bottom of the box).  My Grandmother is diabetic but loves chocolate, so I found some yummy sugar-free chocolates to add to hers.  =)  Wouldn't these be great gifts to make just to cheer someone's day?  I just think they are a "sweet" addition to any gift basket.

I hope all you Mothers out there have a LOVELY Mother's Day!!  Lisa


  1. These gift boxes are lovely but I did ***not*** need to know that dark chocolate edamame exists. Those are two of my favorite things and I may have to make the run to TJ now.

  2. dear Lisa,
    Absolutely Brillant idea. Love these boxes. Chai did u say? Great minds think alike. LOL. Hope u had a great Mothers Day....mine was quiet with my DD in NYC. Shell be home for 7 weeks this summer cant wait. Thanks for stopping by, you know I do appreciate it!
    take care, gerri

  3. Well I love dark chocolate, but not sure about the edamame! Now these boxes are quite clever and adorable! Thank you for sharing! I hope you are having a great weekend!


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