DIY Keepsake Box - timeless and affordable!

Want to make a loved one a timeless gift that costs less than ten bucks?

Then you've found the right blog!

Today I'll be showing you how you can make a wood and leather keepsake box for less than $10 of materials.

Finished product. This is actually one of my most absolute favorite gifts M has given me so far. I've had it for a couple years now, and still feel special when I look at it!

First, you'll need to pick up a couple things. Here's what I recommend.

To get a box, visit a (some) local cigar shop(s) and ask if they are selling any cigar boxes. We have found that the average price of an empty cigar box (which nice brands will use legit wood to maintain quality for the cigar) a buck. Yes, you read that right! One dollar for a wooden box! We usually pick up a few while we are there.

Then we go to Michael's or Hobby Lobby to get leather. They both offer 40% off coupons on their websites, so make sure to use that! With the coupon, a bag of scrap leather should cost around $8. You will have left over leather to play with, or you can make lots of keepsake boxes. You'll use about a dollar or two worth of material.

Then you will need glue. The Dollar Tree has super glue for a buck. If you would rather use a wood or leather glue, that works too! You can also buy glue at whatever store you get the leather from, but it will cost more.

Now, you can get sand paper if you want a weathered look, or rubbing alcohol if the cigar box has some sticky sticker residue left on it (not all of them do). Those are both optional, so it's not included in the price.

So, a quick break down (not including tax):
Box - $1
Leather - $8 for bag, $1-$2 for box
Super glue - $1 - $3.
Total (box only) = $4 - $12.

Try getting a leather and wood box online for that price!!

Now to make the box:

Clean the box off and out. This includes stickers and cigar separaters, if they are present. Depending on the style of box you choose, they may or may not have them.

Measure the sides of where you want to put the leather. We chose top and bottom, interior top and bottom. Then measure your leather and cut it out.

Our kids tried coloring the leather with crayon. Although it's not as clean looking, I still love using it! You can see there are tabs on the side where the separaters were. You could even leave them in if you wanted to.

Next, glue the leather pieces on and let sit until dry. M used super glue.

Leather on the bottom of the box. 
Afterwards, M added a few touch ups he thought I would like - he sanded some of the edges down just a hair, and outlined the top leather with black permanent marker to frame the leather. Then he experimented with different leather dyes and finishes until he found one he liked. The wood was already stained and finished.

Honestly, I love opening it up to smell the leather. Call me obsessed, but sometimes I open it up just to smell the leather. :D

Ta-da! A keepsake box for less than $10 and a priceless homemade gift.

Here's a simple version of this blog post. Enjoy! :)

If you'd like to check out other keepsake boxes, leave a comment and I'll get back to you. If there's an interest in these boxes, we will post some on etsy and let you know.

Thanks for checking this out and have a great day!



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