Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Wedding Present

Two of my dear friends got married this weekend and I wanted to make them an extra special present. But I also wanted to craft more.

I had heard about the wine box ceremony a few months after our own wedding and I thought it was great. Well, knowing my friends, Matt and Rachel, were wine fans, I thought it would be perfect.

I found the perfect box at Home Goods. I even ran around the store, trying to find a suitable wine bottle substitute to make sure it would fit in the box, and the box would still be able to close. I made due with a bottle of margarita mix. (I even got a discount because the clasp was broken--something I never thought I would be able to ask for, but I mustered up the guts and got a whole $1.64 off! Haha.)

Now, I know the box looks gorgeous. And when I brought it to my dad for advice, he tried to talk me out of doing anything to it. But, what you can't really see in the picture are the knicks and scratches on the box. But it was a solid wood box, and it was the perfect size. Especially for the two glasses I was lucky enough to find to also fit in.

(Please ignore the old mail, tape dispenser and my wine glass. One day, I will adequately set up my pictures...or maybe not.)

So, first I had to remove the hardware and figure out a suitable replacement for the broken clasp. I'm telling this out of order, though, because I ended up bringing the whole box to Lowe's to show to the hardware department manager. But, she was able to help me find one that worked just fine.

Because the clasp wasn't the same color as the hardware, I spray painted them all in my brushed silver spray paint. (I think the can is magical...I keep finding projects for it, and never running out!)

I had found a window box shelf I adored at Home Goods, as well, so I sanded it and added it to my collection of things that needed to be spray painted blue.

After three coats, the box came out perfectly! I didn't bother spray painting the inside rims because I figured I would either touch it up or figure out another solution later.

Knowing the wedding colors were blue and brown, I was able to use scrapbook paper I had for use in the living room. I had made blue- and sepia-toned wallet-sized copies of some of their engagement picture and other pictures I found on facebook. I used a ruler and craft cutting knife to cut in the squares as a sort of mat for the pictures to sit in.

Then, I started placing pictures in the holes and used Mod Podge to adhere the pictures to the paper.

Then, I placed the pictures and paper on the box top and used even more Mod Podge (but, then again, I don't believe there is such a thing as too much Modge Podge). Then I added the names and the wedding date cut from the invitation and the Save The Date cards, as well as the decorative ribbon.

After about four coats of Mod Podge, I started spraying it with acrylic sealer. Then added another three layers of Mod Podge. Then sealed it again with five more layers of acrylic sealer. Needless to say, these pictures weren't going anywhere.

While I was waiting for the layers to dry, I had to figure out a way to make sure the wine bottle and glasses were well packed. After remembering getting into trouble as a child, I remembered how easily carved floral foam is. (Quick story: my mom had some, I had fingernails and was an only child and amused myself for about an hour with the stuff.)

When I brought home the blocks, I began to carve them with, don't laugh, an ice cream scoop and a melon baller. I should point out, at this moment in time, that I worked for five years at Carvel. It was nice to find out I hadn't lost the art of the perfect scoop.

Unfortunately, the box was a little too small to accommodate all the bulk of a wine bottle and glasses, while still being able to close the lid.

So, after wasting a few hours on that, I cut slices from the cut pieces and used Liquid Nails to adhere the foam to the velvet lining.

Instead of touching up the edges of the boxes, I remembered my glue gun. (Oh, my glue gun. I made a vow that if I ever opened a craft shop, I would name it "Happiness is a Warm Glue Gun". Sorry, kind of a fan of puns.)

I purchased a piece of scrap fabric with a wedding motif. First, I ironed the rough edges under, then glued the corners to the corners of the box. Before that, I attached ribbons to the sides of the box just for a little extra holding power for the contents. I used finishing nails as an extra precaution on the ribbons.

After adding the hardware back on, I had to make a nice presentation of the "instructions" for the box.

Here's a bigger picture of the text.

Here's the final product.

After another few layers of acrylic sealer, I was ready to wrap it up.

If you're a fan of Mod Podge, this article from Mod Podge Rocks is fantastic for wrapping. I used the Press 'N Seal wrapping like the article recommended. I haven't heard anything from the bride and groom, but they're in Aruba, so I won't press them for details of how well my Mod Podge held up.

Oh, and while I was waiting for one of the many layers of either Mod Podge or acrylic sealer to dry, I spray painted a frame with some leftover blue spray paint, and used my circle cutter to use some of the leftover pictures.

Unfortunately, I didn't take a picture of the final products and wrapping. (I even made a bow from leftover ribbon! I'm pissed I forgot to shoot it!) But when I told friends what I made them, I got at least three informal invitations to future weddings because they liked the gift idea so much.


Mod Podge Amy said...

This looks wonderful! I love it.

lavendarrose29 said...

I have not seen or heard of this before but what a stunning idea. Your project looks great. Mod Podge rocks.

BlueCastle said...

Awesome project. Very original. :) Love it.

Emily said...

Thanks, all! I'm still getting compliments from the bride and groom! I must say, it's one of my biggest accomplishments.