May 15, 2012

Mailing Box Cubby Bins

Today turned out to be super productive. Love when that happens because it doesn't seem to happen that often. Do you ever have projects that every time you look at them they bug you? I had three and .......
today I got all three done!!

We have a 100 year old house and storage is always an issue. They turned the first floor coat closet in to a first floor half- bath which isn't half-bad but I need a WHOLE lotta more space to put coats and crappola!

 This is what we had originally although it did look a bit better because I had a cover over it that I had made out of a cool tablecloth. But really,  it still looks bad no matter how you try to disguise it.

So my dear neighbor, Mr. Rich, passed last December and his sweet daughter gave me this amazing mail slot cabinet that he had handmade. It is all minty green and delicious goodness.
I needed some big spaces for those book bags that are giving my son a torqued back, you know the ones. 
So I saw-zawed some of the slots out because this thing was put together like  jig-saw puzzle so I could not just 'remove" the back and slide them out.  Most of my projects start out with the words "I'll just..." 
Been there?

This is so sad.......

......and messy.......

 .......and just well, sad. 

Beautiful bins from Target were calling my name so sweetly that I headed right over there to pick me up some.  Do you know they cost like $6.00....a piece?????? for the ugly ones!!! Of course I didn't like the guy ones.  I liked the ones that were $8.00 each and I need 8 boxes and, well, I hate to say it but I am El Cheapo and I wasn't payin' Uno Peso for them. 

This is where it gets good and ironic. Because I am so cheap, I am usually trolling other aisles for ideas instead of going to the appropriate aisle.  (table clothes for shower curtains/ place mats instead of the purse section) I went looking in the scrap booking section and came around the corner to the packaging area. Mailing boxes of all sizes lined the shelves. Hmmmmm........

Took out the measurements I had in my purse and found boxes that were perfect for my slots. How about that irony....mailing boxes for my mail slot cabinet? LOOOOOve it!

(ALWAYS take measurements of everything and keep them in a notebook in your purse so when you see something out and about, you can refer to it and save a ton of time and effort because you won't have to return anything. I also keep an Ikea paper tape measure and swatches of my paints and fabrics in that notebook. It takes up hardly any space and has saved me more than like 300 times from making a bad purchase)

I still needed something to cover the boxes however because I like a little bit of pretty.  Decided to go back to the scrap booking section only to find that paper is apparently an endangered species because those prices were outrageous as well. Can't a girl catch a break?

To the party aisle to find some rad cocktail napkins! Remember anything can be used differently...

Here's the skinny...

Take your boxes and tape them all up. 

Cut the sides on an angle like above. There is writing on all but one side of the box. That will be your front just in case the napkin you choose are pretty transparent.

They should look like this after you are done cutting. Fold the top flap that is in the front inside and tape in place.

Reinforce the top edge with tape

Wrap the top like this

Fold tape inside like this

All of the boxes folded, reinforced and ready for decoupaging.

Unfold your napkins and dry fit where you want them to sit. BEWARE!! Mine had small writing near the middle when I opened it up so make sure you put that somewhere out of sight.

Paint some glue on the box, including the sides, a little on the bottom and inside. Lay your napkin down and smooth it out. Paint some glue over the top and let dry.  8 boxes took me about an hour to complete, that included folding, taping and decoupaging. 

Now the next part was not so stellar. I had seen all these great tutorials on transferring images using wax paper/ or freezer paper. I found wood tags at a local craft store, was ecstatic and thought 
"Well, I'll just....." 


Two hours later  (I DID have to run to CVS to get more ink...and more wax paper.. and more chocolate because at this point, I was screaming at the printer and not saying some very nice things) this is what I  was "okay" with but not ecstatic. But sometimes you need to move on...

Wanna see?

I didn't do the insides because once they are filled you can't even see the back. 

Kinda like how the tags turned out once I tied the twine on and attached them. Hot glued them at an angle  to slow down the wear and tear that will surely come upon them.

I made this one facing the wrong way! Honestly, it is amazing I get anything done right

Here it is all corrected and organized. I didn't add tags to the other bins either because those items will most likely change often. Maybe "I'll just" use chalkboard paint on those tags?

The total cost for 8 bins? 
Target: $64 for 8 $8.00 bins
Me: $15.50 

 What else did I accomplish today? Practiced some photography  and editing.....
Mexican Heather


 Library Book Bin got a cardboard and twine bunting because I am tired of the library books getting put on the regular bookshelf and I am tired of the regular books getting stored in the library book basket!

Kids helped with the lettering. Love it,  makes it theirs and it satisfies my need to be organized with a little bit of pretty. Second problem solved.

Grabbed this beauty from the trash! and got it sanded and primed! 

Wish my legs looked this good after so many years

This was not a problem just a happy perchance today.

AND since I am officially over the hill since I have officially bought my first pair of reading glasses.. I made a glasses case from one of my husband's old ties.  I have only been using them for a week and I have already lost them 4 times in my purse. Third problem solved!

Tie tutee will follow tomorrow because 

I am like three kinds of tired

I'll just go lay down......

Always being renewed,

Please see the link party page to see where I link arms with those blissfully beautiful bloggers that host every week. So gracious they are. Todays Creative Blog vif187 all crafts Homemade Projects ~ Add Yours! {5/1} Home Stories A2Z


  1. Such a great idea! I need some more organization in my house... especially for paper! Thanks for sharing at Craft and Tell!

  2. wow honey !! You accomplished so much in one day ~ it would take me weeks, and still I probably would'nt have done it all ! Love transformation of the mail boxes.

  3. Very cool, and resourceful! Thanks for sharing at our Handmade Tuesdays party!

  4. This is a fantastic project! Love the upcycled boxes! Would you consider linking it up at my Pinworthy Projects Party? I hope to see you there!

  5. That is a COOL piece of furniture! Love the mail slots and your organization additions!!! You're blasting with all your projects! Xo, Aimee

  6. What a great idea and I love that you used napkins to cover them ... so creative! I really appreciate you sharing this (and the super cool glasses case from one of your hubby's ties!) at the {what's shakin' link party}!

  7. Love how you repurposed that great storage piece! your mailing boxes turned out so cute. Yay for a day that you can accomplish a few things. thanks for linking up to Vintage Inspiration!

  8. Great idea! I wanted to let you know that I am featuring this today!

  9. Thanks for sharing and you've been featured at Sunday's Best!

  10. Wow!! Awesome job with the mailing boxes - very clever! And I love your library basket - so cute.

  11. I love that unique cabinet! You gave it a whole new life!

  12. I am so glad you shared this - I've been wanting to organize my pantry and linen closets but wasn't willing to shell out an enormous amount of money for the "real" organizer bins. I'm definitely trying this!

  13. WOW!!! You have been busy!!!!!!! The cabinet has completely new look now that you made some cubby bins!

    Thanks so much for sharing at The DIY Dreamer... From Dream To Reality!
    I'm looking forward to seeing what you link up this evening!

  14. SO drab to fab! Great idea and completely functional!

    Thanks for linking up with me at last week's Drab to Fab! Hope you'll come back this week and link up again. I love seeing what you're up to!

    Amy @ Sugar and Spice


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