By Noreen Doll.
We wanted to use some boxes under our coffee table to hold miscellaneous items, but the cardboard boxes didn’t look very pretty.
So we decided to cover the boxes with paper and Mod Podge.
It isn’t hard to do, it just takes some time as you have to allow the Mod Podge drying time between coats.
The finished box feels like wood instead of cardboard.
Here’s how we did it.
Scrap Book Paper with a Wood Grain, enough to cover your boxes.
White Elmers Glue
Ruler or Yard Stick
Plastic Bag and Wax Paper to Protect Surfaces
Disposable Cup to Hold Mod Podge While in Use
Small Ziplock Bag to Keep Brush from Drying Out Between Coats of Mod Podge
2 or 3 Foam Brushes
Piece of aluminum foil to cover cup in between uses.
Open ziplock bag to place brush in while Mod Podge coat is drying.
1 damp paper towel to wipe sticky fingers while working.
1 dry paper towel to dry fingers or wipe up messes.
How to Make Easy Faux Wood Crates from Cardboard Boxes
1. Cut all the top flaps off the box.
2. Glue the box to make it sturdier and stay together well.
After the glue has dried, remove any tape from the areas you will be adding paper to.
3. Carefully measure and cut paper to fit each side of the box.
Mark the box sides as 1, 2, 3, and 4.
Number the paper on the back to match the number on the side it fits.
Not all sides of the box will be the same, and this will ensure the paper gets on the side of the box you cut it to fit.
4. Prepare everything you will need to use while Mod Podging, as once you start you need to work quickly to finish with the brush before the Mod Podge becomes tacky.
5. Work quickly with the Mod Podge. Apply a liberal coat of Mod Podge all over side 1 of the box. Not too thick, but enough so it doesn’t dry out before you can adhere the paper.
Align side 1 paper on the Mod Podge, making sure the top edge and 1 side edge of the paper are even with the box top and side edge.
Smooth the paper on the cardboard rubbing firmly from the center to the edges.
Support the under side of the cardboard with your free hand while you work.
Run your finger around the edges to be sure the paper is completely adhered to the box.
6. If any of the paper extends beyond the edges of the box, use scissors to trim the excess paper off.
7. Apply a coat of Mod Podge over the paper, making sure the edges are completely covered and sealed.
Work quickly but thoroughly to finish before the Mod Podge becomes tacky.
8. Use the brush lightly to make long strokes across the box, either horizontally or vertically to finish.
Allow the Mod Podge to dry completely.
We use a hair dryer to speed drying, by moving it back and forth (don’t stop in one place) over the box.
You can then start the next side as soon as the previous side is dry to the touch.
Continue with sides 2, 3 and 4 until the sides of the box are completely covered with paper.
9. After the first coat has dried, apply a second coat of Mod Podge, this time ending with brush strokes going in the opposite direction as the previous application.
We applied 3 coats of Mod Podge to the boxes because they will get a lot of handling.
The final coat of Mod Podge should be going in the same direction as the wood grain to give it a more authentic look.
10. One box had a lid, so I adhered paper around the sides of the lid and then found a wallpaper print I like to attach to the top of the box.
And because I also love this map wallpaper, I adhered it to the inside of the box lid – though it wasn’t really necessary.
Use the same process to apply this paper as you do for the box.
11. Two of the boxes didn’t have lids. I could have made some lids for them, but to allow easier access to the contents, we just cut a piece of cardboard to size and lay it on top of the contents for privacy.
We used this paper to cover the other lid.
Be sure to wipe off scissors blades after cutting paper with Mod Podge on it, or set the scissors blade down in a cup of water to soak while you work.
The inside and bottom of the box don’t need to be covered with paper, but you can if you wish.
I used the same pieces of wax paper over and over, allowing any glue or Mod Podge on them to dry before reuse.