I have written before about fabric boxes. If you’re curious, there are four other articles here: One, Two, Three, and Four. I am enthralled by boxes, be they polymer clay, needlepoint, or wood. Recently I decided to revisit the boxes of Meg Evans, which I’ve made before. This time I decided to play with her exact design. And therein started the problems.
Hand-Stitched Boxes: Plastic Canvas, Cross Stitch, Embroidery, Patchwork, by Meg Evans
Ms. Evans’ book is a delight. She has instructions for many different types of boxes, including some fun ones that fall open in a sort of puzzle-like fashion that I’m dying to make. They’re above my skills, and then it hit me: practice!
I bought supplies to make all the easy boxes with the exception of the kleenex box covers, since I’m not a huge fan of them. I started with the square box since I’ve made it before. How hard could it be, right?
This is the beginning of the design. It uses crewel wool and pearl cotton, held double. I had fun working out the cover and then started doing the central diamond.
Only one problem: I misread the instructions and was supposed to do a square 30 bars wide, but I cut it 30 squares wide. By the time I caught it, it was too late to fix it without taking the entire thing apart.
I figured, to heck with it, I’d just finish the top. In the image below, the top is along the top row, on the right.
Then I started working the bottom piece. This time, I added two extra lines of ivory squares to make up for the mistake in cutting the boxes too large.
I finished the design and realized that I’d forgotten to put in the center squares on two of the parts of the diamond.
I worked the walls of the bottom piece last and laid them out so you can see the design.
It sewed up fairly quickly. Here it is with the first wall up.
As I finished the rest of the sides, I realized something. You can see it in the image below. There’s a little face!
I showed this to a friend of mine and she said it looks like a little cat face. I think it looks like a little robot.
I used the dark blue to finish the top of the bottom part of the box as well as the edging along the top. It came out quite striking, especially when you see both pieces side-by-side.
This is the completed box put together.
I learned a lot from this project, but nothing I expected. I don’t really have a better idea of how to put the complicated boxes together, but I learned to accept my mistakes and keep going. The only part I took out was the one side I put on too tightly; the rest of it, I let stand because it made the box unique.
See, here’s the thing: I do this to relax, not to make perfect boxes. I don’t need to do make a box exactly like the instructions, I can play around with it.