Today I have a DIY mermaid Valentine’s Day mailbox to share with you.
I’ve been busy creating Cricut Valentine’s Day projects. I already shared my unicorn Valentine box that I made with my Cricut Maker here. If you prefer mermaid valentines though, keep reading!
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While I was shopping at Hobby Lobby for the felt to make my Unicorn Valentine Mailbox, I came across printed vinyl that looks like mermaid scales. I knew right away that I had to make a mermaid valentine box too!
How to Make A DIY Mermaid Valentine Mailbox
I picked up my metal mailbox at the Target Dollar Spot, but I have seen them at Walmart as well.
I bought my felt, patterned vinyl, and sequins at Hobby Lobby. The felt is a stiffer felt which cuts much easier than soft acrylic felt. I though it was best for the tail so that it holds its shape when the mailbox is picked up.
Cut the vinyl and felt using the Cricut Design Space file.
The first step to make a mermaid Valentine mailbox is to cut the vinyl and felt using the Design Space file I created.
The Design Space file is in my resource library. You can get the password at the bottom of this post!
Cut patterned vinyl
Make sure to note which direction the scales are going! Even after double checking, yep, I still did it upside down the first time (insert facepalm emoji here, lol).
The vinyl that wraps around the mailbox has a hole cut for the little flag that raises up, and a small slit to help the vinyl lay down seamlessly.
cut tail, ears, and bow from felt
If you have the Maker, I would use the rotary blade for the bow since the felt I used for that isn’t stiffened. The tail and shell ears can be cut with the fine point blade. (Don’t try to cut the shell ears with the rotary blade- they’re too small to get a good curve on the bumps).
Don’t have the Maker? The stiffened felt will cut fine with the fine point blade. You may want to buy a stiffened felt for the bow, or be prepared that the felt may need to be cut several times to get a clean cut. All of the bow pieces are straight lines so you could even finish cutting them with scissors if needed.
Change the name in the design space file (and a note about shadow fonts)
I used the Don Juan font which is a Cricut font, but you can use any font you like. The mailbox is 4” from front to back, so I tried to keep my name around 3.75” wide. You may need to adjust the size based on how long the name you are cutting is.
It is important to note that Don Juan is a font that was created with a shadow layer. I thought that since the patterned vinyl was so busy, the name needed a shadow to help it stand out.
In the Design Space file, I have the shadow layer visible. Some, (not a lot), of Cricut fonts were designed to have a shadow layer also. The tricky part is that unless you look in the layers panel, you don’t know if it has a shadow or not!
You can make a hidden shadow layer visible by going to the layers panel. When you find the text you typed, it will have the top text as well as the shadow text. If the little eyeball next to the shadow layer has a line through it, it is hidden. Just click that eyeball and the shadow layer will appear!
Cut the name and eyes from vinyl
Cut the eyes and name from adhesive vinyl. Removable or permanent will both work fine here. I just grabbed what I had on hand, which was Cricut Premium Removable vinyl.
If you need a vinyl refresher, check out the Vinyl 101 series here.
Assemble Mermaid Valentine Box
Once everything is cut it is time to put the mermaid together.
Adhere the patterned vinyl using the “hinge method”
The “hinge method” of applying vinyl basically means that instead of peeling off the vinyl backing and trying to work with a big sticky piece, the backing is instead removed in two or more pieces. This gives you more control over the placement and will save you a big headache!
First, weed away the excess vinyl, including the circle that was cut out.
Next, gently lift the vinyl from the edge just enough to cut away a small piece of the backing so that the area under the hole and slit have no backing. Also, cut a line in the backing from the part you removed across to the other edge. (see image #1)
Raise the flag and maneuver the hole in the vinyl around the flag base. It should be easier since only a small amount of the vinyl is actually sticky at this point.
Once you have it lined up, go ahead and peel the backing away from the smallest part and smooth the vinyl onto the mailbox.
Slowly peel the backing from the rest of the vinyl, starting with the inner part first, and smooth the vinyl onto the mailbox as you continue to peel the backing.
apply vinyl eyes and name
Apply the vinyl eyes to the front of the mailbox with transfer tape.
Next, apply the top layer of the name to the shadow layer.
Here is my trick: I put transfer tape over the top layer and peeled the backing off. Next, I put the backing back on, but scooted over where only the first letter is sticky. This allows me to line up the first letter on the shadow without worrying about the rest getting stuck down too early or in the wrong place.
Once the first letter is lined up just right, then pull the backing off and lay down the rest of the name to the shadow layer.
Adhere felt tail and decorate with sequins
Line up the mailbox on the felt mermaid tail and adhere it with lots of hot glue.
Adhere felt bow and ears to the mailbox
Assemble the felt bow by taking the longest piece and folding each end over and adding a dab of hot glue to make the loops. Center it on the strip with the pointed ends. Finally, wrap the tiny strip around the middle and secure it with hot glue in the back. Center it on the mailbox top.
Next, fold over the little rectangle part on the seashell and apply a little hot glue. I tried with the E6000 but the hot glue is easier and works better. Place a shell on each side of the bow for the mermaid ears.
Tada! You have now made the most adorable Mermaid Valentine Box ever!!!
I would love to see your DIY Mermaid Valentine’s Day Mailbox if you make one!