DIY: Haunted Halloween Hatboxes @RuthlessCrafts

DIY: Haunted Halloween Hatboxes @RuthlessCrafts

 Haunted Halloween Hatboxes

Are you ready for Halloween? Need some cool decorations that you can make yourself? These customizable paper mache boxes look great on their own or holding ghoulish treats of your choice. They come in many shapes & when Halloween is over they are also great for storing your spooky treasures until next year.  The best part about this DIY is that if you’re not happy with the result or want to change the decoration to go with another holiday, simply prime & repaint!


Time: About 1 hour; Skill level: Beginner


1. Mod Podge Matte

2. White, black & orange acrylic craft paint

3. Paper mache boxes

4. Sandwich bags

5. Black ink pad

6. Paper towel or stamp cleaning pad for stamps

7. 2″ Sponge brushes, need 3

8. 1″ round sponge brush

9. Sandpaper 100 grit or finer

10. Halloween themed stamps (rubber or acrylic)

11. Halloween themed paper

Step 1: Decide which paper to use for the lid & the box. Rip strips of paper to fit then use a 2” sponge brush to glue to the box & lid. Rip off any overhang/excess.  If you have a snug-fitting lid you may want to glue the paper on the box a bit lower to account for this. The paper will add depth & interest to the completed box.IMG_2247Step 2: Mix the paint to your liking in the baggies (I added a bit of black to my orange & a bit of white to my black).  With the paint in the bottom of the baggie, twist the bag 2-3 times & use your free hand to smush the paint around the bottom of the baggie.  For a more transparent painted look, add a little water to the mix. Better to start too light as you can always add more later. Use a 2” sponge brush to coat the box & lid in orange. Do a second coat if you’re unhappy about the coverage on the first coat. Leave the sponge brushes halfway in the baggies in case you need to touch-up later on.IMG_2248Step 3: Flip the box over & designate, using small pencil marks on the bottom, the size of your stripes. As math was never my forte I will use any object at hand to determine a roughly equal size stripes (or you could break down & use the ruler). The total number of stripes must be an even number. Use the pencil to draw lightly down the sides of the box as a guide when you are ready to paint. Dot some black paint on every other stripe to designate which stripes will be black. Use another 2” sponge brush to create the stripes.  Don’t worry about being precise—it’s meant to look a bit rough.

Step 4: While that’s drying take your lid & the 1” round sponge brush. Saturate the sponge with a decent amount of paint; if needed, blot the excess on a paper towel. While holding the lid in one hand, place the round sponge halfway on the lip of the lid to make a semi-circle. To evenly disperse the paint, give it a slight twirl as you lift up. Don’t worry about smudging the top as you do this. Continue around the lid until finished.IMG_2249Step 5: While the lid is drying, take the sand paper to the box. I like to start with the bottom edge (top edge won’t be seen once the lid is on) & then go back over the rest of it.  During this stage sometimes the paper underneath will tear more than I intend so I will touch it up with some paint.

Step 6: Sand the lid. If paint glopped onto the top from the scalloped edge, sand it down. I like to do both edges, around the lip & over the whole top.IMG_2250Step 7: Take your stamps & stamp the orange parts of the box. There is no rhyme or reason to this part; just make yourself happy.

Step 8: Once you’re happy (or once you’re done stamping) coat the box & lid in a final coat of glue to seal in the paint.IMG_2252If you plan to store this item, heat & humidity will take its toll on your hard work. I would recommend storing in a cool, dry place.

Happy crafting!

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Ruth is a DIY blogger; mixing manic over-achievement & disproportionate attention to detail with an uncontrolled overactive imagination since 1982.

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