Happy Birthday Explosion Box

May 18, 2015

Design Team-May-2015-5

Hi, this is Selma Stevenson to show you how I decorated a Birthday Explosion Box using three of Susan’s new flower dies. The recipient will not only receive long-lasting flowers, but also a gift card to make their birthday wishes come true! Susan’s new Garden Notes flowers are just the perfect size to decorate cards and boxes, and I am sure they will be treasured because they look so realistic.

Design Team May 2015 2

When closed, this is a six inch square explosion box.

Design Team May 2014 Front

*Creating the lid (shown above):

1. The top of the box must be just slightly larger than the box. Use 12″ x 12″ white cardstock. If using a score board, push the the cardstock over 1/16″ and score at 3″. Do this on all four sides. This will make the lid just slightly larger to fit over the bottom of the box. Add adhesive to the four corners to create the lid. See photo below.


2. Use Secret Garden Graphic 45 design paper to cover the top and sides of the box.

3. The Grid framing “Secret Garden” is die cut using Susan’s Garden Patch – 7/8-inch & Mini Leaves die set. Four squares are cut out of the center of the grid and centered over the words in the design paper. Add flat-back pearls at the intersections of the grid.

4. Die cut the Garden Notes – Hydrangea. Instructions for die-cutting, shaping and adhering the hydrangea is at the end of this post.

5. Use black Corner peel-offs, tulle and a ribbon to complete the top.

*To create the Explosion Box itself:

1. Use 12″ x 12″ cardstock and score at 3 inches on each side. See photo below.

2. Cut out the four corners and crease the seams well. See photo below. ECD-STCDT-May-2015-tut6*Inside panels (next 2 photos below):

1. For the flower on the bottom, use Garden Notes – Hydrangea. Cut white cardstock slightly smaller than the panel and emboss with Swirly Curves and adhere to the panel.

2. For the flower on the left side, use Garden Notes – Lilac. Cut white cardstock slightly smaller than the panel and emboss with Swirly Curves and adhere to the panel.

3. For the flower on the right side, use Garden Notes Hyacinthe. Cut white cardstock slightly smaller than the panel and emboss with Swirly Curves and adhere to the panel.

4. On the side of the box with the Happy Birthday PopUp, adhere purple cardstock to that panel of the box.

*The center, inside panel (next 2 photos below):

1. Cut a piece of 6″ x 6″ white cardstock and emboss 3/4 of that cardstock at the bottom with the Sea Glass embossing folder. Cut out the top of that white cardstock to fit around the popup panel on the top.

2. To create a pocket on the bottom for the tag, use the Paris Edges lacy die. Adhere on the bottom and each side with a small roll of Transparent Double-Sided Tape.

3. Die cut purple and white cardstock with the Tags & More 6 – Daisy die. Die cut the purple cardstock from the tag outline die and die cut the white cardstock with the decorator die in addition to the tag outline die. Create a pocket at the bottom to hold a gift card.

4. Adhere a sheet of Transparent Double-Sided Tape to a piece of white cardstock large enough for the black candles and gift peel-offs. Adhere the peel-offs onto the tape, sprinkle with Cool Diamond Silk Microfine Glitter and color with Copic markers. See a video tutorial HERE. Both the candles and the gift are attached with dimensional tape.


*To create the dimensional “Happy Birthday” shown above and below:

1. Use the Happy Birthday PopUp dies. Click HERE to see a video tutorial.

2. Use 6″ x 9″ white cardstock for this die cut and score at 3″.

3. Place the die cut on the score line to create the popup.

4. The words “Happy Birthday” are die cut using black cardstock.

5. Die cut the stars using Transparent Double-Sided Tape attached to white cardstock. Then pour Silver Silk Microfine Glitter over the tape and polish with your finger. The silver stars are glued to the popup.

6. Glue a strip of the glittered cardstock behind the 6 stars on the bottom of the popup. Die cut the small stars on white cardstock and adhere the negative image white star strip on top of the glittered strip.


*Finishing touches:

1.  Use letter stickers to adhere “a gift for you” sentiment by the gift.

2. Black border stickers are added around the Happy Birthday PopUp and along the bottom of the center panel.

3. Add black peel-off corners to inside panels as shown to match those on the lid.


*Shaping the hydrangeas: Click HERE for a video tutorial.

1. Shape the base piece in the Garden Notes – Hydrangea die set using the largest ball stylus as shown above. By shaping this base piece, it will give the hydrangea the rounded (domed) shape.

2. Die cut the petals using four shades of light purple card stock and mix the colors on each flower as shown below.


3. Using the smallest ball stylus, press down in the center of each petal to give it shape then press down in the very center to cup the petals as shown above. Note: Die cut many petals at a time and use extra for future projects.


4. Glue the petals around the bottom of the domed base and then cover the entire base. Mix the shades of purple petals to give variation to the color of the flower. After the entire base is covered, add additional petals on top of the ones already attached which creates a nice full blossom.


Here is a closeup of one of the finished Hydrangea. The finished flower is less than 2″ wide and about 1/2″ high. Aren’t they beautiful! Shape the lilacs and hyacinthe similiarly (without the dome) and adhere as shown.

Explosion boxes are always a lot of fun to receive. I hope you will give this a try and surprise someone you know!


Elizabeth Craft Designs:

1020 Susan’s Garden – Hydrangea

1017 Garden Notes – Lilac

1016 Garden Notes – Hyacinthe

1004 Garden Patch – 7/8-inch & Mini Leaves

808 All Metal Tool Set

810 Large Molding Pad

603 Silver Silk Microfine Glitter

642 Cool Diamond Silk Microfine Glitter

Transparent Double-Sided Tape

E119 Swirly Curves embossing folder

E125 Sea Glass embossing folder

979 Paris Edges

959 Tags & More 6 – Daisy

947 Happy Birthday PopUp

1226 Corner Peel-Offs

2545 Candles Peel-Offs

2544 Gifts Peel-Offs

1004 Straight Borders Peel-Offs

1281 Alphabet 1 Lower Key Peel-Offs


Cardstock: white, black, 4 shades of light purple

Graphic 45 Secret Garden Design Paper

Copic Markers

White tulle

Narrow Lavender and purple gingham ribbon

Flat Back Pearls

Dimensional foam tape


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  • Marge May 24, 2015 at 10:06 am

    Awesome and I must give it a try as I’ve never made one of these before

  • Debra Hensley May 20, 2015 at 1:42 pm

    Stunning! Absolutely gorgeous and what a wonderful gift idea!

  • Joleen May 19, 2015 at 9:22 am

    This is a totally amazingly beautiful card!! WOW!! Your work is amazing!!

  • Mary Prasad May 19, 2015 at 8:59 am

    Gorgeous box! The flowers came out beautifully!

  • Selma May 19, 2015 at 7:39 am

    Thank you everyone for the nice comments. I am happy you enjoyed my project this month and I hope you will give it a try.

  • Yvonne May 18, 2015 at 11:09 pm

    How lovely to receive this through the mail.

  • Sharon Welch May 18, 2015 at 8:33 pm

    Wow – so unique and unusual and extra special and beautiful to boot! Truly loved it and looking forward to making something similar.

  • Frances May 18, 2015 at 5:40 pm

    gorgeous creation Selma

  • Mary E. May 18, 2015 at 4:42 pm

    Such a beautiful and unusual card. You have outdone yourself!

  • Debbie Kaste May 18, 2015 at 1:59 pm

    Just gorgeous, Selma. You are incredibly talented. The flowers look real!

  • Camilla Narayan May 18, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    Love it!!!

  • clickityklak May 18, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Barb Macaskill SAID IT ALL…..WHAT MORE CAN I SAY…..GORGEOUS AND I WISH I WERE THE RECIPIENT ! Gotta try this. Thanks you for sharing, ever so much!

  • Candy Spiegel May 18, 2015 at 9:59 am

    Wow. Those flowers are beautiful!

  • Nicole May 18, 2015 at 9:37 am

    Beautiful explosion box! Thank you for sharing the tutorial!!

  • Judi Kauffman May 18, 2015 at 9:35 am

    Gorgeous, Selma!

  • linda May 18, 2015 at 9:16 am

    Beautiful but how can you mail that?

    • Selma May 18, 2015 at 9:33 am

      I wrap the explosion box in bubble wrap and mail in a cardboard box. It is a very light gift to mail.

      • Elizabeth Craft Designs May 19, 2015 at 9:46 am

        Thanks, Selma! I didn’t see your reply before replying myself.

    • Elizabeth Craft Designs May 19, 2015 at 9:44 am

      Hi Linda – explosion boxes with bottoms and lids can’t be folded down. With this box, you would carefully wrap it and put it in another box to mail.

  • beejaymc May 18, 2015 at 8:50 am


  • Raquel Mason May 18, 2015 at 8:42 am

    Wonderful explosion box! I love the Paris Edges as a place to hold the tag and the corner peel-offs add the perfect touch.

  • Patti Leeke May 18, 2015 at 8:41 am

    Lovely, TFS

  • barb macaskill May 18, 2015 at 8:13 am

    Absolutely breathtakingly gorgeous!!! TFS!

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