From Simple to Simply Divine: Turn Cardboard into Artful Shrines

“I have always loved things that have the ability to be transformed from something simple into a piece of artwork. I find these items lend themselves to the awakening of so many creative ideas. In this age of recycling challenges, I find it quite appealing to create these lovely shrines from discarded cardboard and packing material. Nestled within these altered beauties is a story of sorts, a story created from layers, textile bits and historical pieces that all have meaning and, when combined, tell a tale all on their own.” – Kristen Robinson

Project Details

Artist: Kristen Robinson

Instructions: The instructions for this project can be found in the Fall 2018 issue of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine.

Techniques included in this project: Creating a box structure, plaster wrapping, collage, painting, hand and/or machine stitching, embellishing


  • Cardboard
  • Craft knife
  • Metal-edge ruler
  • Pencil
  • Bone folder
  • Masking tape
  • Acrylic paint (I use Golden® Artist Colors or Liquitex® pain in white and off-white.)
  • Dust mask and gloves
  • Scissors
  • Plaster wrap
  • Non-stick craft mat
  • Cookie sheet
  • Bowl with water
  • Paintbrush, flat (I used a ½” paintbrush.)
  • Fabric, 3 different weights in neutral tones (I used one lightweight, one medium weight, and felt.)
    • TIP: Use scraps from your stash. I used neutral tones, but create your own look.
  • Crochet or heavyweight thread
  • Embroidery needle
  • Ephemera, including vintage papers
  • Fabric and paper adhesive (I used Beacon Adhesives™ Fabri-Tac® and Aleene’s® Tacky Glue®.)
  • Buttons, 3 small
  • Beaded trim
  • Crochet trim, a few inches
  • Book text
  • Colored pencil (I used a Prismacolor® Premier® colored pencil in Dark Umber.)
  • Watercolor crayon (I used a Caran d’Ache® Neocolor® II water-soluble crayon.)
  • 20-gauge wire
  • Wire cutters
  • Aggressive adhesive (plaster safe), such as E6000®
  • Optional:
    • Sewing machine and thread

Create your own artful shrines from cardboard when you get the digital or print Fall 2018 issue of Cloth Paper Scissors magazine.


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