Monday, December 19, 2016

DIY Christmas ornament box photo mat

When I was helping my Grandmom decorate her tree this year, I noticed one of her ornament boxes was on the verge of completely falling apart. My Grandmom is kind of quick to just throw things out, without regarding sentimental (or vintage) value so I asked if she ever decided to toss out the box if I could have dibs on it first. To which she replied, "Just take it now!"

It was too delicate to actually use to store ornaments anymore, but the design is such perfect vintage, and it's been around for so many family Christmases (this one has been in use since my mom was little!) that I couldn't bear to see it thrown away. I thought I'd share what I used the box for, just in case anyone else is in a similar situation, with all these beautiful boxes that land somewhere between "too fragile to use" and "too special to throw away."

I decided to use my box as a mat for a festive photo of Arrietty. The box was *almost* 8" x 10" so I just bought a piece of red polka dot scrapbook paper at the craft store to fill in the gaps. I carefully cut the sides away from the box and then taped any rips and tears to create a sturdy mat for my photo. I used repositionable glue dots to hold the photo in place and then mounted it in the frame.

I definitely could have stopped there (and tbh my frame would have looked a lot less DIY/crafty if I had) but I didn't want the illustrations on the sides of the box to go to waste, either. So I cut them out carefully (I used scissors but if you have a delicate box, learn from my mistake and use an x-acto knife instead) and hot-glued them to the base of the frame. Then I used a paint pen to add some embellishments that matched the design of the box.

I'm so happy that I was able to save a piece of our family's Christmas heritage and turn it into a decoration that I'll be putting up for years to come :)