Sunday, July 8, 2012

Toss The Smokes; Alter The Box

The Kindred Souls group is in the midst of a cigar box swap, and I was lucky enough to be paired with Neil, an awesome artist from England.  We briefly communicated and both decided that whatever each of us did would be fine.  I was happy to be making a box for a man, because I don't often get to do that,  and I did what I love to do......a little bit vintage, a little bit steampunk, a little bit grunge, and a whole lot of texture.   I just mailed the completed box the other day, and it will take about two weeks to reach Neil.  So, Neil, if you're reading this and would like to be surprised, step away from the computer or go visit another blog!


Above, a look at the box with the lid partially opened (yes, it closes nicely).  And now for some closer looks.  First, the top.



I took some corrugated cardboard and ripped off the paper covering one side, then cut it into different sized pieces for the mosaic look.  I used inks and stains to color the pieces until I thought they looked suitably grungy, and adhered them with a strong glue.  Then I went through my stash of keys, selected some and glued them down.  I wanted to attach some sort of knob to the top to aid in opening the box, but the craft knobs I had on hand (lots of them!) didn't have a screw long enough to go through the lid, and I had no screws in my junk drawer that would fit, so I wound up using a finial from an old lamp that worked perfectly.  It took a while to get the hole made, but an awl worked fine.



The sides of the box were covered with many scraps of patterned tissue paper and sealed with Ranger's Glue N Seal.  Oh, I used that on the top of the box too, by the way.  The chain goes all the way around the box and the swags were created by attaching the chain with plain old thumb tacks....which I banged up and colored with permanent ink to get a rusty look.



Decorating the inside of the box was optional, but I just couldn't leave it naked.  Here's what it looks like fully opened.  And next, photos of the inside of the box and inside of the lid.

                                         

For the bottom and sides of the inside I took some patterned paper and altered it with stamps and stencils.



The underside of the lid was covered with Tim Holtz's tissue tape, which was then colored with both Golden's fluid acrylics and distress inks.  And yes, everything was sealed and protected with more Glue N Seal.




I think boxes look nicer if they have some lift, so I added feet.....made from bingo markers.  The paper on the bottom of the box is plain old kraft from a disassembled grocery bag.  It was inked, crumbled, inked some more and glued down, without smoothing it too much so some of the wrinkles remained.  It may not look it in the photos, but I think it resembles leather. 

I left this out and opened for DAYS before packing it up (carefully enough, I hope) and sending it across the ocean.  Even though everything seemed dry after a few hours, you really want to make sure of that before shipping something like this.  I wouldn't want Neil to be unable to open it.  Speaking of which, before packing it up I did put a little something inside for Neil to discover.  No photo of that, so even if Neil decided to look, something will still be a surprise.








27 comments:

Dorothy said...

Wow!!! Eileen, this is amazing!!!

Lori said...

Absolutely stunning work, he'll love it! Very fitting for a guy....or me. LOL..love the idea of the bingo markers for feet, I happen to have a ton of those.

Patzee said...

LOVE this manly cigar box. The mosaic on top is fab and the chain all around is super cool. Brilliant use of those wood bingo marker!!

Heidi Bound said...

Eileen, this is gorgeous! The texture is amazing-I just want to reach through the computer & touch it!!!

Elaine Akers said...

Eileen, you did a fabulous job transforming your cigar box. Wonderful piece, and I'm sure Neil will love it.

Helen said...

I am sure Neil will love it, as it looks incredible.

Mary-Beth said...

gorgeous piece Eileen!

Penny Duncan said...

This is absolutely WONDERFUL....I love how the top looks like rusted metals........

Rita Loyd said...

Wow Eileen...this is amazing....and I can see all the work that has gone into this...I am sure Neil will be very very pleased....

Bearcrazyman said...

Incredible as always. I have almost finished mine for this swap too.

Anonymous said...

Oh Eileen, Neil is going to love this! It is a spectacular piece. Very grungy and steampunky! Love, love it!

Kathy Eddy said...

Oops, somehow I hit anonymous on my comment. It was me. LOL

Lynn Stevens said...

Fabulous!!! Neil is a very lucky guy to receive your awesome box.
hugs Lynn

Vic said...

Fabulous! Every detail is super.

Alicia said...

How Amazing this is Eileen! I know Neil will treasure this for always! LOVE those bingo marker legs and the draped chain! *Hugs*

Unknown said...

Another amazing creation by Eileen, agreed Neil is one lucky guy! All the details so well thought out!

Candy C said...

Very cool cigar box! You have inspired me to drag out some of my old boxes and do something fun with them! Love your piece....inside and out! <3 Candy

Debs Doodles and More said...

I love what you did for Neal great box!
Guess I had better get me in gear and get Heidi's finished
thanks for the inspiration

Stephanie Rodgers said...

This box is awesome! I love the chains on the sides, and the Bingo "feet".

Sue Fraser said...

Eileen you did an amazing job with the texture and steampunkery! Love it

Gloria said...

Amazing!!

Tammy D said...

Eileen I finally got a chance to stop by your blog and check this out. WOW it's awesome!

lostartcreations said...

SOOO COOL Eileen! Love all the details!

Anita Houston said...

What a super fun swap, and moreover, what an awesome box!!! Absolutely cool!!!

teri said...

This turned out great. I love seeing the finished product.

CuddlyBunny said...

This is UNbelievable! I love the key pattern on the top, and especially your corrugated "tiles"!

The feet, and the chains ... just ... UNbelievable!

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