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Cocktails & Crafting: Photo Box

I’ll be the first to admit, I get Martha Stewart impulses during the holidays (Give me a glue gun and some glitter, and it’s on!). Inspired by the many ways our subscribers have repurposed their Birchboxes, I came up with three simple (read: stress-free) upcycling ideas of my own. And for me, no crafting session would be complete without a seasonally appropriate drink. I tapped cocktail aficionado Emma Emerson, the founder of Gastronomista, for three of her holiday favorites.

Three crafts, three seasonally appropriate tipples, three days of the most fun you’ve ever had (right?). Try these over the holidays with family or invite friends over for a cocktails and crafting party. First up: the photo box.

Birchbox Upcycle #1: Photo Box

Concert tickets, playbills, photos: You name it, I save it. And there’s nothing I love more than a chic place to store all of these keepsakes. This photo box ensures that everything stays organized—while also looking pretty darn cute at the same time. And since they’re so easy to personalize, they make a great homemade gift.

Here’s what you’re going to need:

• 1 Birchbox
• 1–2 Paintbrushes
• Paint color of your choice
• Glitter paint
• 4 Photo corners
• Photo to display

Step 1

Start by painting the exterior of your box, top and bottom. I went with a dark gray, but it’s really up to you. Wait for it to dry and add a second coat. You can paint the inside too, but I love the box’s interior chevron print, so I’m leaving mine as is.


Step 2

Next up is the glitter (the best part!). The number of layers you paint depends on how much sparkle you’re going for—for this, I used three. Make sure to let the paint dry between layers.

Step 3

Once the paint has dried, it’s time to personalize the lid. Before adhering the photo corners to the top of the lid, insert the photo of your choice (anything works, but I used a black and white one for a nostalgic touch) and place the photo corners onto the photo.

photo placement

Step 4

Place the photo with all four photo corners onto the lid (this helped me place the corners exactly where I needed to on the lid). I eyeballed it, but you can also use a ruler to measure and mark for exact placement.

Spirit #1: Rum Old Fashioned

No art project would be complete without a festive cocktail. This classic is basically impossible to screw up. It’s a little stiff, so sip carefully.

2 oz. Mount Gay Rum
1 oz. Mandarine Napoleon Liqueur
Orange peel
Lowball glass

Combine ingredients in a mixing glass with ice. Stir for 30–40 seconds, then strain into a lowball or rocks glass with a large ice cube. Garnish with an orange peel.

Check back this week for more crafting and cocktails. Until then, go forth and make merry!

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