Crafty Boxes using Coloring Images

By Stephanie Anders

We are all looking for creative ways to use our colored images. Some of us put them in a drawer or an album in the hopes that we find a use for that image we spent a lot of time coloring. Normally I buy all my children a kitchen appliance every year for Christmas. This year I am making all my gifts. and I’m starting now so that I can finish  in time.  Am I saving money? At first glance it appears as if I am spending about the same amount on supplies. However, these supplies, such as the paint, will go a long way towards other craft gifts.  My first project was this set of nesting boxes incorporating pages I colored as the liners. You could take this idea and make it your own or you could create a set just like these for yourself.

Here are some supplies you will need: 

I love distressed decor, and I’m going to give my boxes that distressed, antique look. The trick is in the black craft paint and the candle wax. I used Wrought Iron by FolkArt. This paint is thick, and I did use a flow aid to thin it up some. Paint your box or boxes along with the lid black. Allow it enough time to dry completely before covering the surface with wax. You simply rub your candle across the surface with a light layer of wax. I like using tea lights because they’re so inexpensive and one tea light will last you many projects. Be sure to apply wax to the entire surface of your project. When you are done simply smooth off the little flakes left behind and get ready to paint.

My boxes did get two coats of paint. If you are still seeing some black through the paint you chose, no worries mine did too and it will add to the distressed look of your box. Once my boxes were completely dried, I took my sandpaper and began sanding. I hit all the edges of the lid and around the bottom edges of the box. You want to sand lightly but hard enough for the black to start showing through. Once I had the lids looking as if time had cracked their color away, I began randomly sanding different areas of the boxes. You could also use a craft Dremel with the sandpaper attachment.

Once your boxes are all distressed, it’s time to apply the liner. For my liner I colored  an image  from the September issue by Antonina Kalinina, I then scanned my image and reprinted it four times to cut out for my liner. It is a bit messy and does require a little trial and error to cut out and Mod Podge the images inside the boxes and the box lids. There really are no set directions to applying the liner. Do what works best for you and watch a few Mod Podge videos on YouTube.

Once your liner is in, apply a light layer of Mod Podge over the entire surface of your box inside and out. This will seal not only your painted surface but also your liner, insuring they last for years to come. Hopefully this example sparks some wonderful ideas for you to use with your coloring images.

When scrolling through our companion coloring group, Coloring Books for Adults, I often comment that images need frames. I decided to make a matching frame to go with my boxes using the same paint technique and put that sentiment to use. The center image was drawn by our feature artist, Christine Aldridge and colored by Debbie Mulkey. I also framed the image I colored for the liner. Use your coloring work for gift boxes, memory boxes, or even for those baked good gifts we give away at holidays using these same techniques. Color On and happy crafting!

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