Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Cigar Memory Box and Journal by Lori McClellan

Cigar Memory Box and Journal
Designed by: Lori McClellan

I bet you already knew, but just in case you didn't......  The Hen's Den has some of the COOLEST stuff around, and I got to work with a few of their amazing products this month.

  I was jubilant when I saw that I got this awesome unfinished cigar box to work with.  This amazing box could be used in so many different ways, jewelry box, treasure box, but since we are at the beginning of a new year, I decided to turn this into my special Memory Box.  I am going to walk you through the steps I took to create it, but I hope that something sparks in you, inspires you and you get a great idea of how you want to make your own unique, special box.

1. Take off all the hardware and paint the Darice Unfinished Cigar box.  I used a brown acrylic craft paint.

2. While it is drying cut the paper you need to fit on all the surfaces you want covered.  I used the Gertie "You and Me" Numbers paper from My Minds Eye.
3. Tear some of the paper to make it look aged.  Ink it with Tim Holtz tea die distressing ink.
4.  Use modge podge to adhere the paper to the box.  If your paper is going to cover the holes for the hardware, make sure you keep them open.  I used a toothpick to poke holes in the paper so I could easily put the hardware back on.

5. Add the hardware after the modge podge has dried.
6. Using the Hattie "Happy" Polka Dots Paper from My Minds Eye, cut 2 pieces to fit on the inside of the box and adhere it to your box.
7. I took a piece of the May Arts Ribbon - crochet Ivory and wove a piece of yellow ric-rac from my stash through it.  I glued it on the top of the box.
8. I cut a tag shadow from Hattie "Happy" Polka Dots paper from My Minds Eye, and the tag from Hattie "Buddies" Argyle paper from My Minds Eye.  I used Thermo-web 3d foam squares to give the tag a little pop, and added the words "Memories 2012".  Adhere it to the box.
9. I added a Prima Parfait flower and a clock charm to finish off the top of the box.

I wanted to utilize the space inside, so I created a little pocket where I could keep special mementos, pictures or journaling tags from the year.

10. Cut a strip of paper from Hattie "Buddies" Argyle paper from My Minds Eye to fit across the box, and about 1 1/2 inches tall.  Glue another piece of the May Arts Ribbon - Crochet Ivory, and the yellow ric-rac across that top.  I added a My Minds Eye Stella and Rose Gertie You and Me layered sticker.  I put adhesive on 3 sides, leaving the top open and stuck it to the inside of the lid, creating a pocket.  In the picture you can see there are some matching journaling cards in there, but you could also put pictures, ticket stubs, or other fun memorabilia poking out.

Your memory box is finished!  However, I wanted to have a journal to record some of the fun memories we make this year, and since The Hen's Den has so many awesome products, I wasn't finished playing sooooooooooooo......I made a matching journal that will fit inside the memory box.  Here is how I did that.

1.  Cut a piece of chipboard  to 6 1/2 x 9 inches.  (I used an old cereal box.)
2. Cut a piece 6 1/2 x 9 in piece of paper from Hattie "Buddies" Argyle Paper from My Mind's Eye and another (same size) of Hattie "Boy" Tapestry Paper from My Minds Eye.
3. Adhere the papers, one on each side.  Ink the edges of the paper with Tim Holtz Tea dye distressing ink.
4. Score your journal at 4 and 5 1/2 inches.  Fold you chipboard.
5. Take your binder ring.  Place it in the inch and a half wide area, center it and mark where you want it to go.  Punch holes where you marked, (I use my crop-a-dile, but any small hole punch will work).
6.  Using the brads that came with the binder ring, put em through the holes and spread them out on the back of the journal  Note: the backs of the brads will now be visible on the outside of the journal.
7.  Cut a piece of paper 1 1/2 inches x 6 1/2 inches from the Hattie "Boy" Tapestry Paper from My Minds Eye, ink with the tea dye distressing ink, and adhere it to the back of the journal to cover up the brads.
8. Glue another piece of the May Arts Ribbon - Crochet Ivory with yellow ric-rac to the front of the cover.
9. Cut a tag from Hattie "Buddies" Argyle paper.  Tie the Tim Holtz Word keys charm to the tag and through the lace and adhere it to the front of the journal.
10.  I added 7 gypsies Book Corners in antique brass to the corners of the book.

For the inside I knew that I wanted to have different sections, I debated on having one for every month, but in the end I decided to have different categories.  To start I cut some file type cards with the tabs on top.

11.  Cut tabbed page dividers 3 3/4 x 5 3/4 from several of the My Minds Eye paper collection including Hattie "Boy" Woven stripe paper and Hattie "Happy" bouquet.  Add titles to your tabs and punch holes to fit the binder.
12.  I added these awesome 7 gypsies paperclips avignon to the tabs as well.  As you can see in the picture, I clipped a ticket to the page , so you can also use the clips to add memorabilia to your journal.
13.  Add additional blank pages to record your memories.

And it is that simple......  I know that was a lot of instructions, but don't worry.  I hope that something made you thinks of an awesome unique way that you would like to create your own special box.  My plan is to fill this with fun memories, pictures, funny things the kids said, fun places we visited, school programs, people we love, ect and next New Years Eve we will pull this out and read it together as a family and be reminded how lucky we are to have each other.

Happy Crafting everyone!!

Products Used:


  1. Wow! What an amazing project! Love every detail...:)xoxo

  2. I LOVE it... what a ingenious project... hope I spelled that right...
    The Scrapbooking Queen

  3. amazing, love that book that you can put in the box!!

  4. What a fabulous memory-keeping idea!


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