Christmas Mail Box

Marion Beswick-Arthur
Alberta
Canada
brownowl@idmail.com


******* Please read through a few times before making.*******

These mail boxes can be used to post family cards.

Materials:

1 wooden stair rail spindle about 3'6" high
1 piece of wood 12" by 12 by 3/4"
1 extra extra large coffee can and lid
1 1 1/2" woodscrew
1 1" wood screw and a flat washer
Wood filler
Thin cardboard
Wood glue not craft glue
Hot glue gun
Batting to pad the outside, bottom, and the lid of the can
House paint latex color to go with the material
Christmas material enough to cover the outside, bottom, & one side of the lid
Lining Material enough to line the inside, the inside bottom & one side of the lid
Pre gathered lace 1/2" wide enough to go around your can 3 times
Assorted decorations.

If you have a router pass all the sides of the wooden board through the router to make a decorative edge.
Fill any defects with wood filler.
Sand the spindle and the board.
Find the center of the board and spindle.
Drill holes in the centers.
Use the wood glue and the 11/2" screw to hold them together.
Wipe off any execs glue and set aside for the glue to dry.
When dry paint it with 2 or 3 coats.

Can's lining

Cut a circle of thin card to fit inside the can.
Cut a circle of the lining material about 1/2" bigger than the cardboard.
Clip the edges and glue on to the cardboard circle by bending the clipped edges over.
Cut enough lining to make a tube to fit inside the can , leaving extra for the side seam and about 1" extra at the top and bottom.
With right sides together (the right side should be on the inside when stitched) stitch the side seam using a machine or double hand stitch with strong thread & small stitches.
Clip around the bottom edge of this tube, glue the tube to the cardboard bottom so that the right side of the material is on the inside.
Take the can and make a hole about 3/4" from the top edge - make sure you other screw will go through it.
Take the lining tube and glue it inside the can only glue it to the bottom.

Outside of the can

Pad the outside and the bottom of the can with the batting, glue it in place.
Cut a circle of the Christmas material just a bit bigger than the bottom of the can.
Cut enough material to make a tube to cover the outside, (remember to allow enough for the seams & the padding) allowing about 1" extra for the top & bottom.
Stitch up the side seam with wrong side together.
Pin and stitch the circle to one end of the tube making sure when you turn it all the right sides are on the out side & the seams are on the inside.
Clip the edge of the bottom seam after stitching.
Slip the tube over the padded can.
Drill a hole in the center on the top of the spindle.
Take the wood screw & put the washer on it, poke the screw through from the inside of the can working it through the padding & the material on the outside & firmly screw the can to the top of the spindle - (the can is sitting on its side watch for the alignment of the can & the board)
The lining will hide the screw.
Turn in the raw edge of the lining, easing it around the can to fit, glue it neatly to the outside of the can
Do the same with the outside material except you turn the raw edge & glue it neatly to the outside of the can.
You will have to pull it fairly tight smoothing and easing as you go.
Cut two length of the lace and glue one length to the bottom to cover the seam it will kind of stand up
Repeat for the open end of the can.

Note: Try to get your outside seam underneath the can
Watch where you make the hole.

Lid

Lightly pad one side with batting & cover it with lining material - (remember to clip & turn in the edges so they don't show)
Cover the non padded side with the Christmas material.
On the lining side glue on the last length of lace so it lies flat and sticks out - the lace hides the glued edge.
You can now decorate the whole mail box as you wish.
Glue the lid to the can after you have finished decorating it
It can be glued to one side or to the bottom to look like it is open.

Decorating ideas

Mine has a cute small stuffed hedgehog Santa sitting in some evergreens & flowers on the top of the can
I used lots of plastic rope beading around the lace.
On the lid I glued a plastic Merry Christmas sign.
I sit a Santa or decorative bird house under the mail box too.
Some just make a big flower arrangement on the top of the mailbox & one underneath it


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