SignCut Blog | Exploding Box | Creativity

Exploding Box

Creativity, Paper Crafting

Did you ever wonder what an exploding box is? Check this unique, custom-handmade pieces and super easy DIY explosion box tutorial.

Supplies needed:

  1. Carrier mat with low tack adhesive.
  2. 60-degree blade.
  3. Two (2) sheets of 12” x 12” cardstock. We suggest a weight of 200 to 250gsm. We used dark purple.
  4. Two (2) sheets of 12” x 12” cardstock. We suggest a weight of 160 to 250gsm. We used a very pale lilac.
    We used a pale blue patterned card to signify the sky.
  5. One (1) sheet of 12” x 12” cardstock. We suggest a weight of 160 to 250gsm. We used a patterned card with a different colour on each side so that we could have two colours of butterflies.
  6. One (1) sheet of acetate approximately the minimum size of 50mm x 297mm (2” x 12”)
  7. Glue and double-sided tape.
  8. Scissors.
To get started, gather all the supplies needed and download the files here and unzip.

Cutting the Design

This design uses six different cutting files so we will start with the simpler ones first.

1. Open the file acetate.scpro2.
And place the acetate in the cutter.

2.  We don’t need to choose a colour or to choose between Optimised and Whole Area as there is just one colour.
Click on the knife icon (1) to bring up the Cut Window.
Make sure Use Weeding Frame is NOT selected (2)
Set Position after cutting to Go back to beginning (3).

It is always best to use this option when possible in case the cut is not quite all the way through and needs to be sent a second time.

Click on the Cut out button (4).

3. Place a sheet of the pale lilac card in the cutter and open the file Plain panels.scpro2 and cut out.
4. Place the second sheet of pale lilac card in the cutter and open the file Plain butterflies and panel.scpro2 and cut out.
5. Place the sheet of patterned card in the cutter and open the file Patterned butterflies and panels.scpro2 and cut out.
6. Place a sheet of the dark purple card in the cutter and open the file Box base.scpro2.

7. Click on the pink colour button to select just the pink lines.
These will be our fold lines. We usually say that either pouncing or scoring is acceptable. With this design, we suggest using pouncing so that the folds retain the full strength of the card.

8. With the pink selected right click on the pink coloured button to bring up the Set Attributes window.

9. We want to set the Pounce in this window.
First, we choose the type of Pattern (1) for our line, we suggest using the first option, a simple up and down dashed line.
Next, we choose the Pounce down length (2), we have set this to 0.2mm, the shorter the down length, the stronger the card remains.
Next, we set the Pounce up length (3), a shorter line gives for a neater fold, so we set this to 0.5mm.
Finally, click on OK (4) to make the settings and close the window.

10. In the main Signcut window, we can now see that the pink lines have become a series of tiny dashes.
Click on the All Colours button (1) to select both the pink and black lines as both can now be cut together.
Click on the knife icon (2) to bring up the cutout window.

11. In the cutout window, it may appear that all the lines are solid cut lines.

But clicking on the magnifying glass (1) several times will allow us to take a closer look and we can then see that the lines are actually pounced as they should be. Click on Cut out (2).

Note: Cutting may take longer than you are used to because of the number of tiny dashes.

12. Place the second sheet of purple card in the cutter and open the file Box top.scpro2.

Again we want the pink lines to be for folding so as with the previous file, we click on the pink colour button to select the pink lines and then right-click on the same colour button to bring up the Set Attributes window.

13. We now make the same settings as for the previous file. The pattern type is the default one of a simple dashed line, the down length is 0.2mm, and then the up length is 0.5mm.

Click on the OK button to close the window and set the attributes.

14. You will see the dashes in the main window, click on the knife icon to bring up the Cutout window. Click on the All colours button.
15. Again you may not see the dashes in the preview until you zoom in. Click on the Cut out button. We now have all the pieces ready for assembly.

Assembling the Design

Our first step is to assemble the top of the box. For this, we need the smaller purple piece, the largest square of patterned card and the largest square of pale lilac card. Two butterflies cut from the pale lilac and two matching butterflies cut from the patterned card.

1. Take the purple card and fold along each of the crease lines.
2. The first fold we make is the horizontal one at the bottom of the card.
3. Next, we fold the bottom up and over again so that it is doubled up on itself.

4. Now we fold each side in towards the middle.

5. Repeat with the top of the card.
6. Fold over the right side.
7. Fold over the right side again so that it is doubled up on itself.
8. Repeat with the left side.

9. Now we unfold the top edge of the card and add glue.

10. Fold over once and then repeat the glueing and folding with the bottom edge of the card.
11. Note: We have rotated the card by 90-degrees to make it easier to see the next steps. Add glue to the back of the left-hand side piece that folds into the middle.
12. Add glue to the back of the right-hand side piece, and also to the top edge of the card.
13. Fold the two side pieces inwards.
14. Fold the top glued edge over.
15. Turn the card around and repeat with the opposite side.
16. The next stage is to decorate the top of our box. For this, we need the two squares of card and the four butterflies.
17. Stick the square of pale lilac card to the top of the box and then stick the patterned square on top of that.
18. Take one of the patterned butterflies and glue onto one of the pale lilac butterflies. Note: there are three styles of the butterfly, we need to make sure that the correct ones are paired together.
19. Repeat with the second butterfly.
Note: this is where we can turn the patterned butterfly over because we cut it from a double-sided pattern paper. Turning it over allows us to use two colours of butterflies. Note: you can either glue the butterflies together entirely, or you can just glue the body so that the wings can be lifted up from the one underneath.
20. Glue the two butterflies to the top of the box lid.

21. Now we can move onto the base of our box. To start with, we need the second purple piece of card, the remaining 9 of the pale lilac squares, 5 of the patterned squares. Note: Do not use the four patterned squares with slits in them.

22. Fold up the bottom along the crease line and then repeat with the other three sides.
23. Glue a pale lilac square in the centre of the bottom flap.
24. Repeat with the other three flaps and then add a square in the centre of the box.
25. Add one square of patterned card to the centre of the box.
26. Turn the card over.
27. Add a square of pale lilac and a square of patterned card to each of the flaps. Leave the centre empty as this will be the base of our box. And won’t show once the box is turned the right way up.
28. Next, we want to add the butterflies and the remaining panels.
29. Glue each patterned butterfly to its plain counterpart. Next, cut a short strip of double-sided tape and add to one end of an acetate strip.
30. Remove the backing to the tape and glue to the underside of the butterfly’s body.
31. Place the other end of the acetate strip through a slot in one of the panels. Each of the patterned panels we have left to use has either two or three slots and so will use either two or three butterflies.
32. Decide how long to leave the acetate and use another piece of double-sided tape to glue to the back of the panel and cut the excess acetate away. There will be enough of the acetate strip left to do at least one more butterfly.
33. Add the other butterflies to the panel, using different lengths of acetate so that they do not all look the same.
34. Add glue to the back of the panel and stick in place on one of the four flaps.

And stick in place on one of the four flaps.

35. Repeat with each of the three remaining flaps.

Note: We left the centre panel empty of butterflies. You could add more butterflies here if you wish, or you could add a greeting. We chose to leave it empty because it creates an ideal space to add a gift, whether it be something loose just placed in the centre of whether it be another smaller box.

36. We chose to add some small easter eggs.
37. Lift each flap upwards, making sure that all the butterflies (and any other contents) remain inside. And then place the box lid on top so that the panels are held closed.
38. When the recipient removes the lid, the panels will fall open, and the butterflies will float above.

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