Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Tutorial: Using grid paper to make box templates

Grid paper is so much more than a work surface. Among other things, you can use it to help you line things up, to measure and... to make box templates.

Now I know some of you panic when it comes to boxes (*cough* Mary *cough*) but they really can be quite simple. This rather lengthy double tutorial will show you how to make a simple box template to fit your contents and, secondly, how to make a box template to accommodate a stamped image.

To see the pictures in more detail, just click on them and they should enlarge. If they don't, just email me for a PDF of this tutorial.

First, making a box to fit a gift. I couldn’t find anything fun to put in a box so settled on these three mini highlighters. I forgot about the stash of Mini Ritter Sport under the stairs, but they'll wait for another day.

1. First lay your gift on the grid paper, making sure it’s straight and roughly centred within the lines. Then draw around it, along the lines, to create a template for the base of a box.

2. Next “measure” the sides of the box by checking the height of your gift against the paper.

3. Draw the sides on your box. Make these ever so slightly wider than the height of your gift.

4. Now you can build up your template by adding a lid (same size as the base) and a flap (make it narrower than the sides).

5. You need to add flaps, as shown in the photo, to hold the box together. Now you have your template. If you like, you can cut this out of the grid paper and work from there.

6. Alternatively, mark the measurements on your template. You can either measure them with a ruler or simply count the boxes - the paper is marked in centimetres.

7. Now cut out a piece of cardstock of the correct size and score to match the template. I’ve shaded the areas that need to be cut away.

8. You can see where I’ve folded the cardstock – I’ve marked the cut lines in black.

9. This is the template folded and cut in the appropriate places.

10. Here I’ve turned the template over (this is the outside of the box) and marked the areas that need adhesive.

11. Assemble the box and there you have it. If you make this much larger, it would be helpful to have flaps on the sides of the lid, too, but you will get away without them on a small box.

12. And look! The pens fit perfectly.

Now to make a box to accommodate a stamped image. I usually make boxes and then search around for an image but if you want to use a particular stamp, it’s handy to be able to work the other way round.

1. For this project, I wanted to make an upright box with an elephant stamped on the front, so I started by stamping the elephant on to the grid paper and marking a rectangle around it to represent the white cardstock I would be stamping on.

2. Next I built up the front of the box – I added a rectangle to represent a layer ½” cm larger all the way around, then drew a larger rectangle to represent the front of the box.

3. I added the sides and base of the box – they need to be the same width. Next I added the back of the box (same size as the front) and a flap (narrower than the sides). I’ve shaded the area that needs to be cut away from the template.

4. This is the template cut out of cardstock, scored and folded (all folds go in the same direction).

5. I forgot to take a photo of the assembly – you need to apply tape down the side flap and join the box to make a rectangular tube. Turn the box upside down so all the flaps are sticking up, then fold the small sides flaps in with the long flaps on top. You only need adhesive on the last one.

6. Now you have a box which you can decorate with your stamped image which should fit perfectly.

Hope this makes sense! Making boxes can seem complicated but I’ve found this method makes it really simple.

Oh and by the way, I made the border on this box using the corner rounder, then punched holes using the Crop A Dile.

Stamps: Wild About You
Cardstock: Regal Rose, Rose Red, Basic Gray, Whisper White
Paper: Sweet Always
Ink: Basic Gray, Rose Red
Accessories: Square Scallop Punch, Stitched Ribbon - Rose Red, Corner Rounder, Crop-A-Dile, Rich Regals Brads, grid paper

All products by Stampin' Up! Please email me to order a catalogue, or click the link on the right to view it online.


  1. your tutorials are wonderful., thanks for posting ;)

  2. Outstanding tutorial! Being a "visual person" loved the photos. Thanks!!!! CC

  3. An absolutely brilliant tutorial - thank you!!!

  4. Great tutortial, I like the easy steps you have shown and I get it.



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