DIY Crafty-looking Fabric Boxes

Standard

I have this thing for those cutesy canvas and/or other fabric storage organizer container things. If you knew me in real life, you’d probably be surprised to hear this because I ain’t exactly the queen of organization. I’m not even a princess. Heck, I’m more like the fourteenth assistant kitchen maid. Anyway, I love to look at pretty organizational bins at stores and imagine them beautifying my own castle…well scullery, I guess, if I’m just a kitchen maid. BUT, I never buy them. Because seriously, they cost a ridiculous amount for what they are. Boxes. Or wires. Covered in fabric. Not really worth it to this kitchen maid.

In addition to my cute canvas bin fascination, I have a red bookshelf in my home (yes it’s red on purpose) on which rests many books and four boring boxes – 2 black, 2 white – with “stuff” in them. I bought the boxes from IKEA for a different purpose and when that purpose had ended, they came to rest on the bookshelf. Now, what I really wanted was cute fabric-y boxes to match the aqua/red theme in that room. Couldn’t find anything I loved enough to spend money on. Pinterest to the rescue! (Of course.) There are a myriad of simple tutorials for covering an ordinary box to pretty it up. I happened to mostly use this one. Here’s the pin.

THE RESULTS

New and Improved “Cute” Boxes

Sorry, no before pictures – I didn’t think to take them until it was too late. As far as covering the boxes, I didn’t have any spray adhesive on hand, so I used Mod Podge. Just spread it on w/a standard cheapo sponge brush. Worked like a charm.

WHAT I LEARNED

*All of these people who say that 1 yard of fabric covered 2 diaper boxes must either 1-buy very small boxes of diapers, 2-have had much wider fabric than me or 3-be lying. Since I can’t imagine why someone would lie about such a thing, and since I can’t imagine why someone who has a child that poops and pees regularly would make a habit of buying small boxes of diapers instead of big ones, I’m going to go with numero 2. The boxes I covered were probably about half the size of your standard bigger box of diapers, so I figured a yard would cover 2 no problem. Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight. They were about 5 inches too short! I decided to go ahead and slice those babies down the center to cover 2 boxes anyway and figure out what to do about the 1-2 inches exposed at the tops later.

*That huge run-on rambling up there just means that I learned you should measure before you buy fabric and assume it will work. Which goes against my nature, so I’ll just warn ya’ll about the perils of not measuring and go on with my standard mode of operation.

*I ought to have covered the black boxes w/the more blue fabric instead of the white-heavy one. Didn’t think that one through before charging ahead and now my daisies are a bit muted.

*Knitted stretch fabric isn’t the easiest thing to work with when you’re ironing and using Mod Podge and want straight lines. Now, in my defense, I hadn’t planned on using that fabric, but after the too short fiasco, it was the only white fabric I had on hand and I wanted to add a white band to the top (no, I did not line the whole thing, just the tops) and I certainly wasn’t heading back to the store for more. In the end, it worked out, but other choices would have been better.

—Side note on this one. I just realized that the tutorial I’m linking to doesn’t give instructions for just a top faux-liner and I can’t remember the one that did, so I’ll give the quickest rundown I can here.

First, measure the length all of the way around the top of the box. Add 4 or so inches. This is your length. Then decide how tall you want your “liner” to be and times that by 4. This is your width. Cut a piece of fabric to those measurements.

Iron it.

Fold it in half longways.

Iron it so there’s a crease in the center. Open it.

Fold one edge down to the crease.

Iron it.

Fold the other edge to the crease.

Iron it.

Now fold it in half again along that original crease.

Guess what you do next? That’s right. Iron it.

Viola. Now you basically have a really big binding. Glue it to your box. I glued the inside first and then went around and glued the outside. Your inside corners might be a little bunchy:

Inside Corner

It’s okay. Well, unless you’re OCD. Which, if you’re reading this post, it’s probably not such a good fit anyway. When you come back around to where you started, fold your end under an inch or 2 before gluing it down. Like so:

Where the “Lining” Ends

That’s it!

THE VERDICT

Well, I think they’re pretty cute, anyway. Certainly not professional, but good enough for who they’re for. :)

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