Thinking outside the shoebox – DIY

You know one of the perks of working at a sporting goods company like adidas? You never fall short of shoes. And with that of course come those piles of shoe boxes.

So my next DIY project is converting a shoe box into a suitcase.

But this time I am working on a DIY for a special reason. The adidas Group has just opened up applications for the next round of the Talent Carousel Programme – an exciting internal career development opportunity that would offer 20 adidas Group employees the chance to make a career move into a completely new area in a completely new location. Just how exciting is that!

The first round of the application process involves submitting brand “you” within a shoebox. This shoebox is your canvas to show the world how you represent collaboration, confidence and creativity. My first thoughts: Let’s literally target “thinking outside the box.” I didn’t just want to submit brand “Me” in a shoe box. I wanted it to mean something.

The wide universe out there has so much to offer in terms of people, cultures, experiences and learnings and that’s what the Talent Carousel stands for to me. An unquenchable thirst for knowledge and growth that I will take along with me wherever I go. And I am all ready for that next step. And this is what the suitcase represents. However, wherever I go, there are something that will remain constant – The “I” factor. The thing that makes everyone special and helps us celebrate diversity and benefit from it. And it’s this “I” factor that will reside within my suitcase.

As this is my blog on travel, DIYs, scribbles and random musings, this blog post will only cover how I transformed the shoe box into a suitcase. Hey and even if you are not really applying for any career programmes, believe me, the suitcases make adorable storage boxes! Here’s nine steps for this easy and fun project. Well easy is probably a bit of an exaggeration. There are a couple of steps to get there, but hey – no pain, no gain!

Supplies:

  • Scissors
  • A shoe box of your choice
  • Acrylic paint (black, white and brown)
  • Paint brushes
  • Faux leather cloth
  • Metal rings
  • Hot glue gun
  • Measuring tape
  • Scotch tape or double sided tape (optional)

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Step 1:

Take your shoe box and cover them with three coats of paint. I chose an adidas Y-3 shoe box as it was bigger than your average sneaker box size. Start with a coat of black paint, then brown and then white. Make sure you allow each coat of paint to dry completely.

Step 2:

You now need the faux leather material to make leather strips for your box. First measure the length of the lid of the box and extend the measurement by atleast 5 cm to make sure to also cover the side flaps of the box.

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Measure the width of the metal ring to give you the width for the strips. Now cut out 2 such strips. Mine turned out to be 33 x 3 cm.

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Step 3:

Now stick the 2 strips onto the lid of the box. Measure to make sure you paste them exactly the same distance from the side of the lid (5cm from the edge). Starting at the top end of the lid, paste it down so the extra length hangs loose in the front. This will give you space to attach the metal rings.

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Step 4:

Repeat this process for the sides of the actual shoe box.

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Step 5:

The next step is to attach the lid to the bottom of the shoe box. For this you would need to cut the corners of the back of the lid open and stick one side of the shoe box to the open flap of the lid. Press down firmly.

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Step 6:

Now take the metal rings and loop it through the extra fabric hanging in front of the shoe box lid and stick the fabric firmly together around the metal ring.

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Step 7:

Next, take another strip of fabric and stick it to the front of the shoe box. This will form your suitcase handle.

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Step 8:

Now for the final touch. Cut 8 small circles from the left-over fabric. They could be around 2.5 cm radius. I did not have a compass and hence I used the lid of a spice bottle.

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Cut out one quarter of the circle. The remaining three quarters will act as the edges for your shoe box.

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Step 9:

Paste these at the corners of the shoe box and voila, check out that transformation. You are now all set for your next adventure!

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Coaster Boaster Alert!

Before starting this, I have a confession to make – about how much I adore Pinterest and the lovely treasure trove of inspiration it holds within.

So that’s usually my go-to starting point when I am looking for ways to convert bits an bobs lying around the house into fun DIY projects.

My latest one – Wine cork coasters. These things look so chic and could make lovely gifts too.

Material:

  • Wine corks (You would need 4 for 1 coaster. Don’t have them lying around in the house? Shamelessly ask family and friends :))
  • Hot glue gun
  • Knife
  • And creativity!

Step 1:

Soak the wine corks for about 15 minutes to soften them.

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Step 2:

Cut them into two halves vertically. Best not to do this just after you’ve drunk the wine 😉

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Step 3:

You should now have eight pieces of cork to put your coaster together. Arrange them accordingly to get an interesting mix of shades and writings.

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Step 4:

Now join the  pieces using a hot glue gun. I found it easier to stick two pieces of cork along the sides and then piece the pairs together.

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Step 5:

Some blogs also suggest that you could stick the wine corks onto a different surface like a piece of cardboard or cork board. However I quite like the rustic look of the cut wine corks.

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Step 6:

Now you are all set to wine and dine in style.

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The Son of the Winds

The Son of the Winds

Lanka is burning my lord
It burns – the flames maliciously licking the walls
Each lick a caress – devouring impurity, leaving a carcass so pure
White, pristine; even through the black charcoal

The souls are freed my lord
The sweet sweet suffering
Oh how it hurts, they scream
They scream loud my lord, willing the pain to stop

Even as the souls fly free
Looking into the blue
Mocking the crimson below
Yellow against black, rays against ash

At last the sins are wiped out
Yes my lord, you won by blood
But what of the sinned ashes?
Will Ganga’s sharp fangs come to meet them?

The golden walls are no more, my lord
It’s one now, with mud and water
Lanka is burning, the dark smoke rises
As I sit on the rock, with my tail in the sea

The Gopika of Madhuvan

The Gopika of Madhuvan

What were you thinking Radhe,
when you ran down that shadowy path;
so mesmerised by the tune
that even the leaves had stopped rustling to hear.

Such silence, oh such disturbing silence;
the sun was long gone.
Was it the moonlight that beckoned to you;
The wind, its ally, teasingly playing with your senses?

What, oh what, were you thinking Radhe,
when you let the cloth slip down your hair?
As the thorn slowly tore through the sole of your foot
The sweet sweet pain marking your red footfalls

How will you claim him Radhe?
He dances on the serpents Radhe
Even as the beetle leaf juice
Leaves its mark on another

She then lifted her head
Her fiery eyes unabashedly claiming her right
For, long after, when the stories were told
She was Abhisarika, forever by his side

The prince of Pandu

The Prince of Pandu

Let go of the arrow Arjuna
Don’t you linger Arjuna
This is just the start
Battles will be many

What are you searching for Arjuna
Why the reluctance Arjuna
Oh noble prince
What stays your hand so?

It wasn’t your fault you say
Is that how you consoled yourself?
You are but one of five
Alone, yet dependent

Yes you did win her
And yes you did love her
But come back to today
Come back from your thoughts

The eye awaits Arjuna
It moves swift Arjuna
You are the water
The water is you

Victory; now rejoice
The soft descending feet
You promise her happiness
You promise her protection

You will be tested Arjuna
You will get lost Arjuna
Stay true to your path
So all can be won

The daughter of Drupada

The daughter of Drupada

Where are the tears Draupadi?
Why the silence Draupadi?
Oh daughter of Drupada
Do you still call yourself a princess?

You look beaten down Draupadi
You look broken Draupadi
What’s that in your eyes?
Defeat, resignation…fear?

Why didn’t anyone stand up Draupadi?
Where were your lovers Draupadi?
Oh wife of the pandavas
Tell me what’s on your mind

“Oh Arjuna”, you cried
“Oh Arjuna”, you sighed
He did not lift a finger
He did not raise his bow

Where will you go now Draupadi?
What will you do now Draupadi?
They have taken all away
They have taken all away

Then she spoke oh then she spoke
The chill in her voice like a thousand thorns

“There will be blood”, she said
“I’ll have my vengeance”, she said
All is not lost
And all shall be won