Welcome to my first DIY wedding post! This post will be about how I made my beautiful tiered wedding card box! It was a great place for guests to put cards and a wonderful statement piece at our wedding as it was one of the first things you saw when you walked into the reception! Since I made this card box before I started my blog I do not have my own step-by-step tutorial with pictures. Here is a link to the tutorial that I followed on Crafts Unleashed to make it. I will list some changes that I made from the Crafts Unleashed tutorial and some tips I have for you. For simplicities sake I will mostly refer to Crafts Unleashed as “CU”.
To get started you need to buy a pack of nested paper mache boxes. I got mine from Joann’s with a 40% off coupon. The ones we both used come in a 5 pack and are the same sizes. We both only used 4 of the boxes. CU didn’t use the smallest box but I decided to not use the biggest box instead. I just thought the biggest box was WAYYY too big for my wedding and I didn’t want it to completely take over the gift table. I also liked how the smallest box looked on top. But, depending on how many cards you think you’ll get you might need the largest box because the cards only go in the bottom of the tier. Look at Crafts Unlimited’s tutorial for other materials.
To put the box together I followed the basic instructions from Crafts Unleashed but have a few modifications of my own that I think made it easier to create and have a cleaner overall look. Here is a list of what I did differently:
1. Spray paint the insides
First thing I did differently was spray paint the inside of the bottom 2 tiers black. I didn’t like that you could look into the box hole and see the cardboard material and the messy look of the fabric inside. The black helped mask the “ugliness” inside, especially in a dark reception.
2. Keeping the lids on all tiers
I wanted to keep the lids on each tier of the box for three reasons:
• First, I just liked the extra interest it gave the box.
• Second reason is if you look at the way the top 3 tiers of CU box’s are you can see the fold lines like how you would wrap the side of a present. I wanted it to have a cleaner look and didn’t want the fold lines to be there. Therefore, for the top 3 tiers I just followed CU’s instructions on how to wrap the lid in fabric (minus the giant hole on top) and glued the lids to their box with a little bit of spray adhesive (after wrapping the box in the fabric of course). You won’t need to get inside these tiers so gluing it just helps keep the card box together. This applies to the top of the box too. You would have to cover the entire top up with something decorative if you didn’t want the folds to show. I didn’t want a large flower on top so I went with my “lids on” method.
• Third reason is it will allow for the tiers to be more secure to each other. The way CU is adhering the tiers together without the lids just allows for a tiny surface to adhere together because you are basically just flipping the box upside down and gluing. I would think this would fall apart very easily, especially over time. Also this way you can be as messy as you want with the fabric on the bottom of the box and it won’t show because you’ll be gluing it down!
**Keep in mind if you want the lids on like mine you will need to make an extra cut in the 2nd biggest tier so the cards can drop to the bottom. After I made the cut in the lid for the bottom tier I just traced that opening onto the bottom of the 2nd biggest tier and cut so the openings would be the same.
(To break up the text here’s the professional picture taken at my wedding
of the finished card box by LJ Franklin Photography. So pretty!)
3. Seams in the back
CU’s instructions were not caring about what the back of the box looked like and this might not matter to you either. But, if you do care about the back looking nice because your box might not be up against a wall or you just want it to look nice, here is what I did. I started to glue my fabric on closer to the edge of the box in the back instead of in the middle. Wrapped it all the way around like CU did and then took it to the edge of the box so the seam would end up on the corner of the box. Once you get to the edge leave about an inch of fabric more past the edge and fold that under itself back to the edge so there will be no ugly, fraying edge and glue it down! I also took an iron to the seam on the edge before I glued it down to make it more of a crisp edge. Make sure for consistency to have all your seams on one side.
4. Hot glue
CU says to glue the boxes together with Fabri-Tac…I just used hot glue because I had it on hand and it worked just fine for me. Just make sure to not glue directly on the edge, go in about 1/2 an inch or so to allow for some glue seepage when you press it down. *Not sure how well hot glue would work if you are following CU’s instructions without using all the lids. If you are using my method with the lids hot glue works great! I also used Aleene’s Tacky glue (in the brown bottle) to help glue down some of the stubborn pieces of fabric.
5. Adding a “slide”
Not sure if this is totally necessary or not but I thought having a bit of a lip between where you drop the card in and where it would fall into the box might cause cards to get stuck. Therefore, I took some of the extra cardboard left over from cutting out the opening on the box and made a little bit of a slide. I spray painted it black and just glued with hot glue right under where you cut the opening where you drop the cards in and made it just long enough so it would hit at the opening of where the cards drop in. Hope that made sense 😛
Obviously you can decorate the box however you want but here is what I used:
• Ribbon to “tie” the card box all together. This also prevented people from being able to open the bottom tier. You would first have to un-tie it to open the box. It will help keep hands out if you are worried about that. I just tied a normal bow and glued a rhinestone embellishment on it.
• Ribbon to tie around the bottom of each tier (except the bottom one I vertically centered it to go with the name plate I put on it). I just used scrapbook runner tape to “glue” those onto the box. Made the ribbon’s seam centered in the back and put a pearl on the seam to cover it up and make it look like buttons.
• I found a sheet of self-adhesive pearl strips at Michael’s that I used for the border around the letter hole.
• Used a strip of self-adhesive rhinestones on the top tier to give it some bling.
• Used 3 flowers that matched my theme and adhered them with hot glue.
• Then to top it all off I made a personalized name plate using my Silhouette Cameo. Go to this freebies post to get the free download to make your own!
• To make sure people knew what the box was for I found a cute little frame in the Michael’s dollar bin and put a sign that said “Cards” with an arrow pointing to the box. Free download for this coming too!
I did happen to take one in-progress picture when i was working on the card box to share with friends:
• Make sure to iron your fabric if it’s very wrinkly because it will show up on your box!
• Spray adhesive will get everywhere. Make sure to cover the surface you’re working on and to wipe your hands often so you don’t get sticky fingers on your clean fabric! Also, make sure not to saturate the fabric too much otherwise it will start to look messy. A quick swipe works just fine.
• Make all cuts needed in the boxes before you start wrapping it with fabric.
• Make sure the cut you make for your cards to drop in is big enough for a large card! The largest card we got was 9″x6.5″!!
• Make sure you don’t have a bunch of fabric bunching up under the lid when you are gluing it down. The small amount of fabric makes closing the box tight already and if you have a bunch of extra fabric there it will make it very difficult to close (if even at all).
• At first I tried wrapping it with wrapping paper and just taped it down to save on the cost of fabric. It worked okay but you could see wrinkles in the paper and I just didn’t like the way it looked. It was too shiny and looked a bit tacky.
• I can’t remember how much fabric I used but it will all depend on what size boxes you get so remember to measure twice, cut once!
Good luck on making your own tiered wedding card box! Let me know if you have any questions or comments! Be sure to like Project Abode on Facebook and follow on Instagram!