Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Lucky Day St. Pat's Box Card Assembly

Have a fun and creative time preparing
to celebrate March 17th, St. Patrick's "Lucky Day"
as you assemble this festive box card.
Front and side flaps, back tall panel help it hold its box shape 
to display a multitude of decorative elements
suspended on two “bridge” strips, 
The box card also folds flat for storing or sending. 
Measures approx. 7” tall x 3” deep x 2.75” wide. 

1. Identify and cut the shapes:
A box card base
B side flap decor panels (2)
ctr front flap panel (includes hole punch)
D back panel decor shape
E bridge strips (3 shown; only 2 needed)
F back panel shamrock decor (3 layers)
G back bridge decor: clear panel, "Lucky Day" letters and base, positioning template
H front bridge decor: leprechaun shapes
I front flap decor: 17 tag, horseshoe
J left flap decor: shamrock sprig
K right flap decor: shamrock sprig

2. Position and attach the flap panel decor shapes to corresponding panels. For the front panel, layer the "17" tag first and attach to panel decor shape with mini brad before gluing panel in place (punch hole has been omitted from front flap).

ALTERNATIVE: Position front panel along and use an appropriate tool to punch a corresponding brad hole through box base front panel, then attach tag at later stage.

3. Form the box base into a tube to bring the lower side tab straight edge in line with the opposite tab perforation line of the back panel. Adjust to align bottom edges of both, then glue in place.

4. Layer the back panel decor shapes. The tendril and two shamrock/clover sprigs are numbered with cutouts on the base shapes, with no. 1 being the front, no. 3 the back. For more dimension, small foam dimension squares are placed between the base sections.

NOTE that there are overlay contrast clover head shapes provided to add more color and variety to this sprig and also the side panel sprigs, at your discretion and choice.

5. Position and attach (more foam squares suggested on the back of no. 3 base) to the box back panel. Center the base between the box sides, with the straight bottom edge approx. 1/2" below the side flap fold (or as you otherwise prefer.)

You may also choose to "invisibly" attach the clover head areas as needed to each other and the back panel in strategic areas if they flop forward undesirably when the box is completed.

6. Prepare the two bridge strips by bending back the side tabs to a ninety-degree angle.

7. Apply glue to the outer surfaces of the back bridge, insert it into the box, position it approx. 1/3 of the distance forward from the back of the box interior cavity with the top of the strip even with the flap folds. Check for parallel to box front/back, adjust as necessary, then hold tabs in place until moderately attached.

Before tabs are completely attached . . .

. . . it is suggested that the card be folded into its closed position as shown here to allow the bridge connections to self-adjust as necessary.  Apply pressure from the top of the flattened assembly in the area of the two end attachments to help them adjust and become secure.

(Repeat this process after the second bridge is attached also.)

8. Prepare the decor assembly for the back bridge. Layer the "Lucky Day" letters on their offset base shape.

Position and attach the bottom portion of the assembled element to the top of the clear panel (sticky tape or other "dry" adhesive is recommended).

NOTE: There is a "template" shape included in the cut file that can be cut from second grade paper to use as a positioning guide. Though difficult to distinguish the clear shape - except for its reflection glare - this image shows the template on the bottom, the clear arch panel with bottom and side edges lined up, with the "Lucky Day" shape being positioned and aligned over the top so that it can be attached as originally designed.

9. Attach the bottom portion of the clear panel to the front of the first bridge, centered and with bottom edges of both lined up.

(Use "dry" adhesive here as well.)

10. Prepare the leprechaun head decor shape by assembling the various shapes on the base shape.

(NOTE: I realize now that shaped edge of the hat base shape includes a slight "bump" in the echo edge that indicates I placed my layered shamrock on the right side instead of the left side where it was originally designed.)

11. Prepare and insert the second bridge strip into the box's interior, approx. half way forward from the first bridge strip (i.e., at the front one-third division) as described in step 7.

12. Position the leprechaun head, tipped and as far to the left as possible to determine where the glue should be applied. The bottom of the beard is approx. 3/8" to 1/2" below the top of the bridge. Apply glue only to the bottom portion of the base backside where it will actually attach, then position and hold until secure.

13. Prepare the two side flap decoration shapes by layering contrast clover heads and centers over the base shape as desired. Bend the stems back where they attach to the squared off oval and fold flat.

14. Apply adhesive to the oval base (this is actually the top/front surface of the base shape oval where the glue is being applied), then . . .

. . . position, centered front-to-back, over the side flap. The bend of the stems should align at the fold of the flap, and only the oval base shape is being attached. 

The left side is shown here. Repeat for the opposite, right side. NOTE that the longest swirl tendril is nearest to the back of the box card.

15. Layer the horseshoe and its base. Position (centered) and attach to the front flap, with it's inner curved edges aligned around the tag, and lower edges slightly offset above the lower flap curved edge.

Here is the completed box card in its open position. 

Here is the box card folded flat.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Mini St. Patrick's Day Bowler Hat Favor Box

It may seem like a tiny leprechaun
has left his bowler hat behind!
Small-scale topper is a favor box, a treat holder,
or simply decor for March's Irish celebrations.
Measures approx. 4" brim diameter x 2" crown height.
3d hat fits over an octagon box base.

1. Identify and cut the shapes:
A crown wedges (8)
B brim main ring (cut a 2nd for underneath)
C brim rim ring
D hat band
E shamrock hat band decor
F base box boxing strip
G base box octagon insert (inside)
H base box octagon bottom cover
Not shown: crown interior octagon cover

2. Prepare the 8 octagon crown wedges by folding the side tabs back slightly, the bottom tab outward slightly, and folding on the three horizontal perf lines.

3. Join the first two wedges by overlapping the right lower straight edge over the adjacent wedge's corresponding tab, to the perforation line, adjust so top and bottom section corners match, then glue in place.

4. Bend the two wedges so that the straight edge and perforation line of the second level line up, and glue in place.

5. Repeat the joining process for the top level section straight edge and tab.

6. Add a third and then a fourth wedge to the assembly with the same process to form half of the crown. Join the remaining four wedges in the same manner to create the second half.

7. Bring the two halves together and line up the lower level section straight edge and perforation line as in other wedge joining steps. Complete this lowest tab joint on both half-seams and allow glue to cure until joint is strong.

8. Push the two half domes together to overlap the straight edge over the corresponding tab perf line. Work to get the best alignment possible, then hold in place until the seams grab.

(NOTE: in this image the two halves are still being pushed together, hence the large center gap. Some gapping may still remain when joint is worked to best outcome.)

9. Apply glue to the underside of the interior octagon cover shape, then place on the inside of the crown assembly to cover the gap, if any exists.

It may be helpful to turn the assembly top down onto a flat table top to provide a press-against surface for the completion of seams and also for attachment of octagon cover.

10. Place the main brim ring octagon opening over the crown. Slide it down until it seats completely against the lower crown tabs.

(It will be a snug fit, so it may take some patience to work the brim into place.)

11. Apply glue to the upper surface of the crown tabs (that is, between the tab and the underside of the brim ring), then press each tab to join to brim ring.

12. OPTIONAL: Place a second brim rind over the underside of the already-attached brim, line up the octagon opening and outer edge carefully, and glue in place.

(NOTE: This is optional since if the hat box remains mostly "closed" during display or use, the construction tabs on the underside of main brim will probably rarely be seen and therefore may NOT need this extra brim shape to mask the assembly.)

13. Apply glue to underside, then place the brim rim ring over the crown and into place with outer edges matches with the brim.

14. Prepare the hat band by bending on all perforation lines.

Place the hat band around the crown with perforation lines aligned at the wedge seams. Overlap the straight side edge, adjust the band to be as snug as desired, then glue edge in place over tab.

15. Quicky layer and glue the shamrock decor shapes, then tuck the stems behind the hat band before the band glue is too dried.

16. Prepare the box base boxing strip by bending lower tabs and upper flanges back, also bend slightly on all vertical perforation lines.

NOTE that a tiny circle cutout identifies the upper (opening edge) flanges.
17. Fold the upper (opening) edge flanges back and glue in place, all except the flange opposite the side tab.

This image shows all the upper tabs folded and glued under in place, except the end tab.

18.  Form the boxing strip into a ring to bring the straight side edge over the opposite side tab's perf line. Adjust so that top and bottom side seam corners align, then glue in place.

19. Finish gluing the left-undone upper edge flange.

20. On the bottom of the box base, bend tabs in toward center.

Apply glue to the upper surface of each tab, on the inside of the octagon.

Select the interior octagon base (does NOT have the thumb tab) . . .

. . . then insert it into the box's interior, adjust to align the straight edges with the boxing ring's straight sides, and push down until the octagon edges seat exactly against each segment of the boxing strip's bottom tabs.

Place the assembly on a flat surface to apply pressure uniformly along each tab until the octagon is neatly in place.

21. On the bottom of the box base, position the outer octagon cover over the box assembly's bottom, adjust so that edges of box and base cover line up, then press in place to secure.

Take care that the thumb tab does not get glued down.

22. Insert the base box into the octagon opening on the underside of the crown and brim.

Here is how the model hat looks 
when the box base has the box upper in place.

And here is the hat box being shown
with the base box open and filled.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Shamrock Block On a Stick Decor

March approaches fast and here is 
the perfect decor project to get your 
St. Patrick's Day "greening of the home" into gear!
Two sizes - large 14" x 5.25" and medium 12" x 4.75" -
of festive shamrocks on sticks supported by base boxes
can stand on a shelf, in a niche, provide mantle focus,
or cluster on your St. Patrick's Day table.
Shamrocks are built as open-back boxes with whole clover cover.
Stick posts are sized for inserting a 5/16" wooden dowel
(cut to size) which makes them extra sturdy for use year after year.
Posts are  inserted into easy-build base boxes.
Adorn as you wish, including ribbon bows as shown.

ASSEMBLY: (same for large and medium sizes)
1. Identify and cut the shapes:
A shamrock front (dark green) and accent front
B top boxing strip
C left side boxing strip
D right with bottom boxing strip
E back "hollow" shamrock with center support
F back shamrock whole "cover" (same as front)
G post strip
H base box main (sides) shape with accents
I base box back/top with accents
J base box bottom with trap door
L base bottom hole cover
K base box support interior strip

2. Prepare the boxing strips by folding tabs inward, folding vertical perforation lines inward or outward according to the angle that matches their location at the shamrock front shape edge.

To know which way to bend the perf lines, lay out the boxing strips to "match" the inward or outward angles of the edge.

The top boxing strip includes a tiny "C" cut into the front edge tab that will help identify that indent and perf line as the center top. The top strip can be visually divided into left and right mirror image halves. The indent between the two shorted segments and tabs is the center top "valley" angle of the whole front shamrock.

The boxing strips also include tiny cutout symbols to help identify how the strips join to each other around the perimeter of the front shamrock shape. Here, the tiny circle cutout is shown in the right end tab of the top boxing strip.

The left end of the right side boxing strip will  have a corresponding circle cutout in the end tab.

3. Apply glue to the first tab (begin at the center and work toward right end or left end first), then overlap the corresponding straight edge to the perforation line at tab edge, adjust so that the tab and edge ends also line up, then apply pressure and hold until the bond is complete.

4. Bend the boxing strip to bring the next segment tab and shamrock edge into alignment, apply glue to tab, re-align and adjust, then apply pressure and hold.

Once the initial grab of the adhesive is made, it may be helpful to turn the assemblage over and apply pressure from the backside (on a flat surface). 

5. Continue to bend, align, adjust and attach each segment tab to corresponding shamrock straight edge to complete the joining of first half of top strip.

6. Complete the second half of the top strip in a similar manner.

7. Locate and prepare the right boxing strip by folding tabs and vertical perf lines as was done for top strip. Slide the lead edge tab perf line under the right end straight edge of the top boxing strip that is attached to the shamrock front, adjust top to bottom for accuracy, then glue in place.

8. Bend, align, adjust and glue each of the tabs to the straight edges of the shamrock front. to complete the joining of the right strip (with bottom segments).

9. Join the left boxing strip to the end of the right strip, then bend, align, adjust and glue most of the segments of the left side boxing strip in the say manner as before. Before the final 2-3 segments are prepared and attached in place . . .

. . . prepare to attach the left end and the top strip lead end in the same operation. Apply glue to the appropriate surfaces, then slide tabs into place at shamrock straight edges as you position end straight edge over end tab.

Adjust, then apply pressure to ensure that all tabs and edges are accurately joined.

10. Apply glue to the backside of the shamrock front accent shape, then position, centered, over the block assembly.

It will be helpful . . .

. . . to turn the box over and apply thorough, rotating pressure to the entire inner face of the shamrock front until the accent shape is thoroughly attached.

11. Prepare the back "hollow" shamrock shape by bending the center support tabs inward and outward as shown.

12. Apply glue to the exposed tabs as seen in the second half of step 10. Position the back shamrock outer edges to corresponding tabs, adjust and align, then apply pressure by inserting fingers behind the rim's edges.

13. Apply glue to the underside of the end narrow support tab, then re-position the support tab so that it is perpendicular to the shamrock front and back shapes. Apply pressure and hold in place until secure.

(Be sure to allow the tab to dry to hard join before trying to insert pole in following steps.)

14. Prepare the post tube by folding on all long perforation lines. NOTE: take care when folding and creasing since the narrowness of the sections between perforations are subject to tearing undesirably.

15. Form the pole shape into a tube, overlap the side straight edge over the opposite tab to perforation line, check ends for alignment, then glue in place.

It may be helpful to insert the OPTIONAL 5/16" diameter dowel that will be cut to size into the tube to provide a "press-against" surface all along the length of the tube.

16. Measure the dowel for length by inserting into the pole tube, aligning cut end at the end tab perforations, then mark the opposite end tab perforation position onto the dowel. Add at least an extra 1" to the length, and cut to size. 

(NOTE: exact length is not important, just a good straight perpendicular cut on the end that will be the bottom.)

17. Insert the cut-to-size dowel into the post tube.

18. Adjust the dowel at  the top of the pole tube back away from the top end tabs. (The end will insert more easily through the hex openings without the dowel extended behind the end tabs.)

Insert the top end through the shamrock front's bottom hex opening AND through the support's hex opening.

Bend the top tabs outward . . .

. . . then glue the tabs in place on the support strip.

19. Prepare the base box sections by folding all tabs inward, and folding all vertical or horizontal edge creases inward.

Arrange the sides shape (at right in the image)  with the side tab at top. Align, overlap back/side straight edge over the center segment tab, adjust ends, then glue in place.

20. Fold the assembly into a box shape, bringing the unattached side panel into alignment with corresponding side tabs or edge, adjust and glue tabs in place.

21. Prepare the center support strip by folding at the center perf line as a valley fold, also bending end tabs inward slightly.

22. Insert into the base box with the V end toward the box's front and centered along that box face. Move support "arms" outward until they touch the box's sides. Glue the end tabs in place.

NOTE: the support should be centered and symmetrical as much as possible.

23. Prepare the pole bottom support plank by making accordion folds as shown. Glue surfaces together that will touch each other, both on the front and on the back.

The resulting shape should be a stack with hex hole cutouts as exactly aligned as possible.

24. Position the plank on the underside of the box's bottom panel, taking care to align the hex hole cutouts as exactly as possible.

25. Position the box bottom over the open end of the base box, taking care to orient the square so that the hex cutouts of front and back line up. (NOTE: the top and bottom flat sides of the hex cutout will line up with the front and back of the box.)

Test close the trap door to see that it closes properly.

26. Apply glue and attach the top accent square to the box's top surface.

(You can also adhere the side accent shapes at this point, though tutorial images show them attached at a later stage.)

27. Insert the bottom of the pole through the box's top cutout (top accent should be in place before this step) . . .

. . . through the box and into the trap door hex cutout.

Apply a little glue along the exposed edges of the support strips under the trap door as it is being closed during this step of construction.

Fold and glue bottom end tabs back. 

Glue the cosmetic hexagon in place on the base box bottom to cover the post construction.

28. Glue side accent rectangles in place.

29. Apply glue to the shamrock hollow back, then position the whole back into place, adjust so that edges match, then apply whatever pressure is possible to achieve a good, smooth join at edges.

Finish your shamrock by tying a 12" length of accent ribbon
at the top of the pole.

Side view, below:

This shot is of the medium sized shamrock.
Construction of the medium is identical to the large
that is featured in the tutorial images.