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Level: Junior and up
Grades: 3 and up | Age: 8 and up | Written by: Amanda Formaro
[Amanda is the crafty, entrepreneurial mother of four children.]

This adorable box is all "girl" with its flower motif and fun fur lining. A little papier mache, glue, and some paint, and your little girl can have her very own jewel box. The instructions listed below are for making the jewel box that is pictured here. However, with simple changes and adjustments, you can make your own personalized box. Simply change the paint and fur color, the size and/or shape of the box, or the design on the lid and sides. Get creative!

What You Need:
What You Do:

Prepare papier mache by mixing half and half the white craft glue and the water. Tear newspaper into thin strips and set aside. Using a ball point pen, draw a flower design on the lid. Dip two newspaper strips at a time into the glue and water mixture. Remove from mixture and gently twist from one end to the other. Place twisted newspaper onto line drawing, creating a three dimensional flower. Continue with strips until flower petals and center circle are complete. Repeat so that the petal outline is two strips thick all the way around.

Tear more newspaper into larger pieces, dip one by one into glue mixture, and "paint" with more glue mixture over the flower outline (see picture). Continue until you have two coats of newspaper covering top and sides of lid. Set aside and allow to dry completely. This could take several hours. Drying time can be decreased by using a blow dryer in a sweeping motion on the LOW setting.

While the lid is drying, place the white fun fur, fur side down on a clean work surface. Place box, open side down on top of wrong side of fur. Trace the outline of the box with a ballpoint pen. Remove the box and cut out the circle from the fur. Set fur circle aside.

Using large paint brush, paint the outside and bottom of the box pink and allow to dry. Give box a second coat and allow that to dry completely as well. When paint is dry, use fabric glue to adhere the fur to the inside, bottom of box. Using a ruler, measure from the surface of the fur you just glued in to just below the top of the box side. Use this measurement to cut strips from the fun fur to glue to the sides, inside the box. Trim any excess fur.

Using the small paint brush, dab on dots of yellow paint all the way around the outside of the box, about one inch apart. Clean brush. Using the small brush again, use white paint to dab on dots for petals all the way around the box.

Be sure lid is completely dry before starting! Using fabric glue, glue mirror to the center inside of the lid. If using a purse mirror that already had a fabric border, you can disguise it with fabric, or as in our case, use the cuff of a child's mitten (pink outline around mirror). Alternatively, you can use mirrored cardboard cut into a circle and glued in place. Cut scraps of fun fur and glue around the mirror.

Using the large paint brush, paint lid completely with pink paint and allow it to dry. Repeat with a second coat. When that is dry, use the white paint and small paint brush to highlight the raised outline of the flower petals. Repeat coat if needed. Do the same with the yellow paint for the center of the flower.

When paint is completely dry, spray entire surface with a clear coat sealer. Allow that to dry and you're done!

Recommended Books/Products:

Papier-Mache for Kids
by: Sheila McGraw
By experimenting and simplifying, papier mache expert Sheila McGraw has created a how-to book for kids with projects that fit the level of skill, the hand-size, and the attention span of children.

Family Fun Crafts : 500 Creative Activities for You and Your Kids
by: The Editors of FamilyFun Magazine

Creating by Recycling (Crafts for All Seasons)
by Laia Sadurni, Anna Llimos
Create art with objects from around the house.

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