Friday, February 10, 2012

A simple, meaningful, DIY gift

Although this site normally focuses on gifts for geeks, this gift would be really great for anyone. It's simply a box of cards, on which you write things you like/love/value about the recipient. As you'll see in a later picture, I made this for my husband for our 16th anniversary; that was 13 years ago, and he still has it! He said at the time it was probably the best gift anyone had ever given him. (And honestly, I'm not sure I've topped it since.)

The assembling of it won't take much time and costs very little. What will take the most time is coming up with the things to write, but don't rush that, because that is what gives the gift its meaning.

It starts with a simple cardboard box. I bought this one at Hobby Lobby, and you could probably get them at any craft store, or the craft section in WalMart; you could even use a jewelry gift-box you might have on hand, as long as the logo is just on the top panel of the lid.

The black stripes on the edge and around the top were simply made with a fat black marker. I didn't worry about getting them perfectly straight. I was going for a handmade look, after all.

For the lid, I cut out a few pieces of paper of diminishing sizes and glued them on top of each other. I wrote "That's What I Like About You," but you could write whatever makes sense for your relationship. (About the weird spelling... I was referring to a song from the 80's, where those words were sung with a sort of British-sounding clip of the ending T's. Or at least, that's how I remembered it at the time.)

As you can see, I wasn't terriby concerned about making it perfect calligraphy. I think that makes it all the more personal. I used papers that were subtly different for an architectural quality, but you could use brighter or more contrasting papers if that suits your style.

I also wrote inside the top of the lid. Quite optional.

By the way, for both the layered paper on the lid and the note cards themselves, I just used paper I had on hand. If you or someone in your house is crafty, you can probably do the same. Or you could upcycle some junk mail, if that's your thing!

I built a simple little easel in the box of folded cardstock, so that the cards stand at a slant when stowed in the box, but you could certainly just place the cards inside flat. Much easier!

For the cards, I used a couple subtly different colors of card stock, and varied the style of lettering I used. But again: do what works for you! You could even create the cards on your computer and print them out on ready-perforated business card stock.

Tie it up with a raffia bow if you're going for a natural look; use something bright or shiny if that's the style you're after.

1 comment:

  1. So cute. Very thoughtful. Love the box and your handwriting.


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