I finally found a good, cheap hatbox with handles at a thrift store. I’m going to buy all of these I can because there are so many ways to decorate and use them for storage.
For this first one, I removed the braided rope handle, then primed and spray painted flat white over the paper box, which was covered with paper printed with small pink and red roses–but only on the outside. The paper was pretty so I kept it inside as a surprise when you open it.
Then I used the splendid blender transfer method (thank you Rosemary Villabarnes) and added a great hatter image I found on The Sweetly Scrapped blog. I took the address from the image I used on the top of the box and blew it up for the side of the box. As often happens, an unanticipated consequence had a good result. The blender tended to smear when I pressed hard enough for the image to actually transfer, and even buckled patches of the paper on the box. At first I was upset, but when I looked at it after I was through doing the transfer, the little buckling had settled down into a kind of aged crackle effect that looks great! Happy accidents (not always!)
Then I traced over the design with a ultra fine black sharpie–as I said in a previous post–you have to be patient to do this kind of transfer. Finally, I antiqued it, sprayed it with clear matte sealer, and reinserted the rope handle. I love this so much I may not be able to part with it!
Inspired by that success, I picked up a 75-cent wooden clipboard at the thrift store and tried the same technique, this time using an image from The Graphics Fairy–one of my favorite source websites. (BTW, there was no crackling “problem” with the transfer method on wood.) It turned out really well–very fun! Hope you like these and try this technique yourself.