Author Topic: Silk Invitation Boxes  (Read 2070 times)

Offline Erica McPhee

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Silk Invitation Boxes
« on: September 10, 2015, 04:21:27 PM »
Calling all book makers (or super crafty invitation designers)... has anyone made silk covered boxes? I found a few sketchy details on making them via a google search. But I wondered if anyone who has experience either making the boxes or with book making could share some instructions or tips...

Thanks in advance!  ;D
Truly, Erica
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Offline jeanwilson

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2015, 06:26:26 PM »
Build the box out of Davey board which is very dense cardboard.
It is somewhat difficult to cut by hand, so if you can get it cut by a commercial paper cutter, that will be better.
because the cut edge needs to be perfectly square, it is hard to get hand cut edges perfect enough.

Gluing is pretty easy - PVA glue
Gluing the box together is the easiest part.
You can sand the box to smooth seams.

The silk needs to be fused to something to stabilize the fabric.
What you use will depend on what kind of silk you use.
There are archival iron on products that are very good.
Bookbinder suppliers will have products listed.
You can also buy silk that is already stabilized and ready to use.

Adhering the stabilized fabric to the box is not hard, but, to do it well, you need to practice.
You need a brush to apply the PVA and a brayer to smooth the fabric.
You also need a bone folder to coax the fabric into the corners.
Sharp knives (Xacto) to make precise cuts.
Metal ruler.

Tricky parts:
getting glue where it does not belong - some fabrics are not very forgiving
making the overlaps neat - they show, so you need to work them into the design

Once you make a few, it is either something you love to do and you will make more
or you will say - never again.


Offline jeanwilson

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2015, 07:08:45 PM »
Hollanders has silk book binding cloth
There are a couple videos on YouTube for how to laminate silk to paper for book binding.
Search book binder silk

Search: clam shell box book binder
and you might find some directions that include all the details on how to do the corners.
 
corners can be tricky and you also have to deal with fraying.


Offline AndyT

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2015, 07:18:33 PM »
Once you make a few, it is either something you love to do and you will make more
or you will say - never again.

Hmm ... I've made quite a few buckram covered razor boxes, and you certainly need to be in the right frame of mind otherwise it's a bit of a trial.  They are quite satisfying though.

The only thing I'd add to what Jean has said is that it pays to let the glue go off for a while before you lay the cloth: if you catch it when it's tacky it won't bleed through the fabric (not that that should be a problem with the backing), and you won't have to contend with the overlay slithering around.  You do need to work fairly briskly though.

Offline Blotbot

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2015, 07:55:32 PM »
Craft stores have boxes.  You might get lucky and find the right size.

Offline Erica McPhee

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2015, 01:26:15 AM »
Thank you Jean, Andy, and Ellen!  :) As luck would have it, I found a silk covered box at the Goodwill today exactly the size and what I was looking to make so I am going to use it as a pattern.

Question - do you think I could use archival double sided tape instead of glue?

Also, could I use matte board instead of Davey board? I may just order the Davey board cut from Hollander's. But I am short on time. Or maybe even foam board.

When I printed on fabric with my inkjet, I ironed the fabric onto butcher paper. I wonder if that would work.

Andy, do you cover the buckram with fabric first or use it as is? 

I used to make fabric covered notebook holders years ago so I'm hoping it will go similar to that. But I'm most worried about the sides.

Thanks again for all the great info!
Truly, Erica
Lettering/Design Artist, Homeopath, Photographer, Mom, Wife
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Offline AndyT

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2015, 03:49:50 AM »
Speaking as a cabinetmaker, double sided tape gets used for all manner of things in the most unlikely places - but don't tell anyone!  ;)  I think you'd need to be very confident to use it for this though, because it won't allow any repositioning.  It'll also be very awkward to do the corners.

Matte board - I've used it with no trouble at all.  Not so sure about foam board which will probably need a different adhesive for the box construction, but I'm guessing.

The buckram I used was ready to lay with no further preparation.  I do recall reading about how to turn any fabric into bookcloth, however, and it looked like the iron on film would be far and away the easiest way to go.  If you have or could get some archival tissue paper, that might be a good bet for the backing: you certainly want something lightweight.  Aha! ... I was positive that Sealemon had done a video on making bookcloth, and sure enough:

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBUJtRNUGOA[/youtube]

I hope that helps a bit.

Offline jeanwilson

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2015, 07:26:36 AM »
if you want a box that will last, the traditional materials and techniques will give you much better results.

if it just a photo prop, you could use mat board or foam core and double face adhesive. you can buy large sheets of DF adhesive that would work better than tape as you could cut it to fit each area, but it will not allow any margin for adjusting, so that is challenging. spray adhesive would be easier - but only good for a photo prop. not good for something that will last.

PVA might warp the mat board. or the layers might separate. you'd want to do a test run to see if it worked.

butcher paper would probably be a real headache. it has a moisture barrier. it curls. you want a paper that is soft and flexible with only enough body to stabilize the fabric.

hopefully you have time to do a test run. you will learn so much on the first one that will help make the second one go much better. the third one would be even better, if you have time.

Offline AndyT

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2015, 09:13:20 AM »
PVA might warp the mat board. or the layers might separate.

No such problems in my experience, but it could certainly happen with a large box unless you cover both sides (the First Law of Veneering).  Again, it's a good idea to lose some of the moisture in the glue before using it: brushing it out on scrap paper until it feels distinctly sticky is an easy way to do that.

Offline Erica McPhee

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2015, 01:00:48 PM »
Again, many thanks Andy and Jean! Very helpful indeed. And yes - that video is definitely helpful!

I have one of the Scotch ATG 700 adhesive transfer tape guns from back when I used to do custom invitations and it works quite well. I just don't recall using it on fabric. I'll try it and if it proves more hassle than help, I'll use the PVA.

I will most likely buy an iron on fabric stabilizer. Buckram is hard to source locally.

This will be fun! Well, maybe I'll reserve the "fun" judgment for after I'm done. It will be interesting and creative! I like that, too!  ;)
Truly, Erica
Lettering/Design Artist, Homeopath, Photographer, Mom, Wife
Dasherie Magazine | Paperwhite Studio | Instagram | Facebook

Offline Erica McPhee

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2015, 01:04:27 PM »
I forgot I have a couple of packages of Heat and Bond from when I made cheerleading bows. I can use that with the archival tissue paper.

That Sea Lemon has some excellent videos!
Truly, Erica
Lettering/Design Artist, Homeopath, Photographer, Mom, Wife
Dasherie Magazine | Paperwhite Studio | Instagram | Facebook

Offline Estefa

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Re: Silk Invitation Boxes
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2015, 02:31:13 PM »
Back in art school, I made a quite complex box (with linen, not silk) for a photo project. I remember it is crucial, like Jean said, to make a 'dummy' from paper to test how you fold the corners, how much fabric you need to cover everything without getting 'bulky' stuff on the back sides etc.. I hope that doesn't sound too unclear it's sort of hard to explain in English, as I don't have the proper words  ::). What I mean is, test it :).

I used some special glue for bookbinding that stays flexible after drying, but the linen came with a back already (also special bookbinding linen for that purpose).

I am curious to see your project when it's done :)!
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