Pillow Box Die Owl Tutorial

Hello, as promised when I previewed a version of this owl as part of the recent Sneak Peeks, here is a step-by-step photo tutorial for how to create a cute pillow box owl using the Tonic Studio Dies.  You can also find a downloadable PDF of these instructions on my own blog DipsDesigns.

Step 1 - Die Cut your Cardstock

First of all, you will need the following dies (all by Tonic Studios, shown in picture above left)
  1. smallest layering circle die
  2. smallest layering scallop circle die
  3. second smallest layering circle die
  4. smallest love arches die (the heart)
  5. pillow box die
You will also need the following pieces of card stock:
  1. Brown textured cardstock cut to 9.5cm x 20.5cm, 2 pieces of 3.5cm x 8cm and 2 pieces cut to 3.5cm x 3.5cm
  2. Black textured cardstock cut to 2 pieces of 3cm x 3cm
  3. White textured cardstock cut to 2 pieces of 4cm x 4cm
  4. Watch the Birdy double-sided patterned cardstock cut to 2 pieces of 3cm x 20.3cm
From these pieces, cut out the following 

  1.     The complete pillow box die from brown card 
  2.     2 sets of the central eclipse shape from brown card
  3.     2 sets of hearts from brown card
  4.     2 sets of second smallest layering circle die from white card
  5.     2 sets of smallest layering circle die from black card
  6.     6 sets of smallest layering circle from one side of patterned card and 6 sets of smallest layering scallop circle from other side of patterned card

Step 2 - Trim the Wings, Score the Beak and Shape the "Feathers"

You may be wondering why I made you die-cut two pieces of brown card from the central eclipse section of the pillow box die.  You are going to use these pieces to make the owl wings! Using a pair of scissors, carefully snip around the perforated edge of the eclipse to reveal a perfect wing shape.  For a really professional finish, lightly rub a piece of fine sandpaper around the edge to remove any nibs left behind after trimming.

You are also going to convert one of the brown cardstock hearts into the owl's beak.  To do this, score a T-shape on the back of the heart, running vertically from centre top-to-bottom and then across the heart to form a "T".  Fold the heart along your score lines.

Finally, in terms of preparation:
  • Fold and shape the pillow box die cut, but do not stick together
  • Stick the smaller black circles slightly offset onto the white circles and add the googly eyes
  • Curl the patterned scallop circles by running them over a boning tool
  • Cut 2 of the patterned circles in half, then curl all of the patterned circles with the boning tool

Step 3 - Assemble the Owl

Starting at the bottom of the front of the pillow box shape, apply a small blob of glue to the back of the point of the un-scored heart, and stick this to the middle bottom of the pillow box die cut (as shown above left). These are the owl's "feet" and help ensure you can stand your owl upright once assembled. Adhere the top edge only of three of the small scalloped patterned circles in a row along the bottom of the front of the pillow box shape (as shown above left).  For even spacing, I find it easiest to place the middle circle first, and then add the other two on either side.  Next, again working from the middle out, apply the next row, this time with plain-edge circles, and offsetting them from the row below.  This means that you will need two of the half circles, one at each end, to complete the row.Repeat another layer of scallop circles.
For the final row, adhere the two full circles into place.  Then glue the beak into place as shown (below left photo).  Finally, glue the wings into place and add the final two half circles to finish the final row of "feathers" (below right photo).

Next, apply glue to the bottom half of the back of the eyes and stick into place.  Set the owl aside for 5-10 mins for the glue to dry and firm up.  Finally, glue the sides of the pillow box together and tuck down the top flaps.  Once dry, stand your owl up and admire your handiwork! 
Please do let me know if this tutorial has been useful, or if you need any clarification on my description or any of the steps.

There are more photographs of the individual steps and a printable PDF version of this Pillow Box Owl Tutorial on my blog DipsDesigns.com

Enjoy your dies and happy crafting!

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