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Sunday, December 4, 2011

Free Tutorial

Well folks I have had such an overwhelming response to my last post about the santa hat box and all my Christmas boxes that someone actually asked for a tutorial. Well, as usual I am a little pressed for time, since I spent last night in the ER with what they think might be another blood clot (yuck). I am fine and we are keeping a close eye on things, so no worries gals.

On to the more important things in life...decorating for the Holidays !!!. Well I dont have another octagonal box, but I am going to give the simple steps to transforming ANY box into a prim work of art for literally pennies with stuff you probably already have around your house. These boxes also make wonderful gifts when you stack them in set of 3 and put little goodies inside. You can use any shaped box you can find...this will change the way you look at your "trash" ladies...todays tampon box could be tomorrow's beautiful prim decor item.

OK, so you dont want to use a tampon box ???? You can use any how about a USED Priority mail cube box ? Just please be sure not to use a NEW one as it is a federal crime ot use Priority boxes for anything other than priority mail.  Well if you dont want to use a tampon box or run the risk of a federal crime ( cuz I know some of you are already contemplating breaking the law...tsk, tsk) Dollar Tree has these 2 pc sets of boxes in their gift wrap section for $1...Here's what they look like ...

Then I just base coat them in the colors of my choice which today were black &barnyard red and I also had one more slightly larger box that I painted yellow...I think it was a left over gift box from last Christmas that I then painted a golden straw color.

Then you just decide on the pics you want to use...Now some folks just print the pics out on those awesome kraft paper sticker labels, which is awesome and easy, but kind of expensive and it means unless you have those little buggers on hand you cant just do this project at the last minute, which as most of you know, is how I roll. So I use good old Mod Podge shown here...
But I have also used good old Elmers school glue with a little water added and gotten the same effect, so literally, this is a really easy project. Next you will need the actual photos you want to use. Now here's the fun part cuz you can use just about any image you want...anything form old Christmas cards, old calendar pics you name it. I used some vintage style labels I have saved on  my computer which I am offering for you to use today...simply copy the pics and then you can size it to your liking using your favorite resizing program...I use Picasa to crop my pics and then make them look older using their "sepia" tone. I then can print them in a myriad of sizes from wallet to full 8x 10 which is what I used for the large santa box. These labels will be about the right size already depending on the box you're using. Here are the pics I chose...


As you all know, normally my photos are copyright protected, but today you can use all 3 of these labels in any way you wish...for your personal use or if you want to make 1000 boxes and sell them at a craft show...well, God Bless ya, you have my blessing and express permission. Go forth and create !

Uh, er, well, now that I got that little overly exuberant theatrical experience out of the way (because yes, I actually said it out loud), on to the tutorial.

Ok, so now you want to print out your pictures and trim them down so no white edges are showing from the paper (I, being very frugal just use regular old copy paper but you can use any kind you want...I wont tell). Here's how mine looked after I cut them down...

Next you're going to paint the mod podge all over the front of the box. I usuallu go in both directions to get good coverage. Then place your item where you want it and paint the mod podge (or watered down glue) over top of it. Be sure to press out any bubbles as you go and smoothing them out with your fingers...if you have a stubborn bubble simply pop in with a pin and add more glue. Then let it dry which takes about 10-15 minutes.
Next I add some stain or antiquing medium...frankly its which ever I have handy. I have used regular minwax left over stain or the little bottles or craft stain as shown here. It's Folkart brand Antiquing medium #810 but you can also use watered down brown paint for the same effect.

For light colored boxes I just brush on a few random splotches and then either rub in with a rag or add a water laden brush to disperse the stain.

For the red box I like to add a TINY bit of black paint in the same manner....
And then just use a watery brush to feather it out. Repeat until you get the desired effect. When adding the stain, just be sure to be ready to immediately wipe it off (gently) from the pictured part of your boxes. Once it's dry I either spray with a sealer or just mod podge again for a final sealant. Let dry completely and voila....awesome Christmas decorations for next to nothing...
This same process works on wood and glass too so the possibilities are endless. Here are a few other examples...

I hope this was helpful and as always, feel free to email any questions. Just think of all the BIG boxes you could do up and place on top of your kitchen cupboards or under a tree...oh the possibilities are endless. I would LOVE to see what you gals come up with so please be sure to share your final projects !

Well, I am off to to put my legs up and take a short break.
Grace to you,


  1. Lovely! Thank you for so generously sharing this tut and labels. I usually find I have a whim to make a certain thing only to find I am out of supplies needed. Go figure! I have everything but the boxes but I think a scout around the house should fix that!


  2. Love your boxes!
    Thanks for sharing your tutorial and your labels! I do believe I have some boxes in the I just have to find them, Lol!

  3. Thanks Margie for the tutorial and the labels. I love taking things from around the house that costs me nothing and make something new. I will be sure to use this idea and post some pics.
    Thanks again
    Country at heart

  4. Woo Hoo!!! LOVE these boxes Margie Girl! Thanks ever so much for the "show-how know-how" and the awesome graphics!! One of these days I'm so going to do this....(If I can unstick my Mod Podge from where I last set it down....) ;o) Hope that clot issue resolves....scary, scary, stuff.....Wishing you a wonderful Sunday and a great week ahead....Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin

  5. Hoping you are ok today, Margie. I could have used your expertise today while I was shopping for a frame for quilting and maybe one day hookin! I am not happy with what I brought home. Heading back to find something of a better quality. I'll be praying for ya...


  6. Love 'em!
    Thanks for the wonderful labels.


  7. Margie: They look amazing! Love these graphics!! Thank you. Hope you're doing better. stay away from spinach and about a thousand other foods!!
    Take care,
    Patti :)

  8. First of all, I hope you are feeling good and the clot issue is resolving itself. I'm worries, despite your reassurances. Second, thanks for this wonderful tutorial. I love the graphics and the boxes are so great!!

  9. Hope you get better soon and thanks for sharing the labels off to pin this.

  10. Margie ~
    Glad all is well and I hope it continues to be so.
    Thanks for the tutorial. One of these days I need to try it.
    Hugs :)

  11. Just love. Great job Friend.
    Saying a little prayer for you.
    Christmas Blessings

  12. Thanks Margie for the tutorial. Sounds easy enough. I have a small set of boxes. Think I might just give it a try. Thanks for sharing the labels. Take care of yourself. And have a great week.

  13. Good morning Margie, Thank you for the wonderful tutorial(Great Job) and sharing your beautiful labels. I am sending prayers up for you my friend! Hugs Mary

  14. I just washed and saved a can and I have a wood box sitting on the counter waiting for a makeover. Thank you, Kendra

  15. Thanks for the tute! Very well written. I have made the boxes in the past myself but I printed the labels on a laser printer with no trouble. Now when I print the labels on my inkjet printer, I have trouble with the ink smearing as I apply the mod podge. Do you have this same problem? Or am I just being impatient and not letting the labels dry enough before applying them? Thanks!

  16. Hi Margie~

    Fabulous tutorial!! Thanks for sharing!!

    Have a wonderful day~Becky

  17. Hi there,thanks for the great tutorial! These would make great gifts. Also, I got a surprise in the mail today :) Thank you soooo much, you are just so sweet!!! I LOVE them!
    Big giant hugs~Stacy

  18. Margie, you bad girl. Why didn't you tell me about the previous clot? (just kidding) I've been waiting to
    hear about your visit to the Rheumatologist
    and have neglected my friend duties in emailing you so I would have known if I had written you. God, I hope you are alright.
    Thanks for the great tuts. Please take care
    of yourself.
    Warm Holiday Wishes,

  19. Woo Hoo and thank you. This is fantastic. I am going to take some time, one of these days, and make these boxes. Thank you for the labels and the tutorial.

  20. Margie thanks so much for the wonderful tutorial and the awesome graphics! Love how your boxes turned out.Hugs,Jen

  21. Love your boxes!!! I'll have to try this out...thanks. :0)

  22. That is a wonderful tutorial Margie. Thank you for sharing with us and being very detailed. I always think I need to buy expensive labels from ebay or etsy, I don't think about getting images right from the computer for free. This would be wonderful for any holiday or season. Thank you also for sharing your free images, they are darling!

  23. Christmas labels are not only easy to make; they're also fun and resourceful. You can actually put labels all around your belongings during the holidays since they're useful, hassle-free and convenient to make. =)

  24. Thank you so much. I have wanted to do this and just didn't know how. I thought I had to go and buy the paper mache boxes never thought of the dollar store or all the boxes I have around the house. That I had to buy the graphics and labels. Again thanks so much and have a wonderful weekend. Debbie

    "Smile it never hurts"

  25. These labels do NOT BELONG to Hungry Hook PRimitives. They are illegally posted under copyright law. They belong to me; Leslie Perkins @ They are my desgins. If you are copying or printing them too, you are also breaking the law. In accordance with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, the text of which may be found on the U.S. Copyright Office website at There will be legal action taken against the owner of this blog any illegal copies on PINTEREST.

  26. Labels post on this site are posted illegally against copyright law. If you copy them, you too are commiting a crime. These labels belong to me, my designs at

  27. You have been notified by email and you have responded that you purchased these labels. Therefore you did not make them yourself. Under copyright law, you do not have the legal right to post these labels and distribute for sale or for free. I am posting on your site for time stamp. You have 24 hours to remove our labels from your site or you will be subject to legal action.

  28. opaque leotards come in 10 don't paster any media approximately Hither. Is it a shipway to make labels. tracheotomy stomas are surgical openings cut in the pharynx as external respiration holes, variable star, with many printers handling labels up to 2 inches across-the-board, others are 4 inches broad or larger. The packaging was sheer gabardine, be feared or neglected.

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