Inspired by the Beach

by Holli Long

Beach Inspired Nesting Boxes by Holli Long

Moving back to Southern California after twenty-three years in Georgia has given me inspiration overload!  I’m not complaining, in fact, I’m a happy crafter.  All of the beach cities have wonderful little gift shops with souvenirs galore! They are really eye candy for those looking for inspiration.

I used this inspiration to create these “beachy” Nesting Boxes.  From the distressed wood look of them, to the simple jute accents, and the lovely shells I found beach combing, these boxes make me feel like I’ve come back home.  And truly, I have.

I’m a “design as I go” type of crafter.  I gather my supplies and let the inspiration go wild.  So, I got together some of the better shell finds in my stash, my roll of jute, which I thought would be an appropriate embellishment, and my nesting boxes.  I used my paint chips to find a nice color palette and thought it would be pretty to add some Extreme Glitter to the shells for a slight glitzy effect so I snagged the Turquoise and Hologram colors from the line.

Gather your supplies to make these cute nesting boxes.

Here’s the full list of supplies you’ll need to make this project:

FolkArt Acrylics 
320         Jamaican Sea
450         Parchment
452         Raw Sienna
524         Calypso Sky
602         Country Twill
649         Warm White

FolkArt Extreme Glitter
2790       Turquoise
2796       Hologram

Other Supplies: Large flat brush for basecoating, stiff bristled stencil brush for spattering, paraffin wax, sandpaper, soft clean cloth, masking tape, jute, hot glue gun, assorted shells.

Base coat each box a different color.

I base coated the boxes each a different color; for the large box, I used Jamaican Sea, the medium sized box is Country Twill, and for the small box I picked everyone’s favorite, Calypso Sky.  I used a very fine grit sandpaper to lightly sand the boxes and lids.

Use parrafin wax along the edges to help create an aged look.

I took a small piece of Paraffin Wax and rubbed it across all the edges of the boxes and lids and then across the front sides of the boxes so that when I sanded the topcoats the entire box would look old and distressed.  I used a soft cloth to lightly rub the wax crumbs from the surface of the boxes.

Add a top coat of paint to the boxes. When dry, lightly sand to create the aged look.

A light top coat of paint over the wax; I used Parchment on the large box, Jamaican Sea over the Country Twill on the medium box, and Warm White on the small box.  When the top coats were completely dry, I quickly sanded again, using a sanding sponge.

Spatter the sides of the boxes and lids with Raw Sienna.

I also watered down some FolkArt Raw Sienna and used a stiff bristled stencil brush to spatter the sides of the boxes and the lids.  I created a simple background for this project because I really wanted the shells to be the main focus.

Paint a few shells with FolkArt Extreme Glitter.

It was quick to paint the shells with a few coats of Extreme Glitter.  I used a soft bristle brush and let each coat dry completely before adding the next.

Knot a few yards of jute.

Trying to make my jute embellishment more exciting, I taped it securely to my work bench and knotted a couple of yards of it.  I kept the knots loose because I liked the look of the loops it made.

Make jute flowers.

I made the jute flowers by looping a yard or so like I was making a Christmas Bow, tying it in the middle to secure it, and then cutting the loops at the ends to let it flair out from the center.  I added all my embellishments with hot glue, and want to thank my handy Hot Glue Gun Helper mat and tools for making this job so easy!

I hope this project inspires you….to look around, see what you like, and make it your own.

2 Comments to “Inspired by the Beach”

  1. Thanks, Carey! It’s good to be home again! I appreciate the props on my project. It went perfectly in my hall cabinet, wish I could have kept it!

  2. These are super cute Holli! I’m so pumped to hear you are back in the ocean air- and totally jealous! All the gorgeous weather and none of the blasted humidity. Keep craftin’ lady.

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