I bought this beat-up old wooden silver chest* at the Goodwill awhile back. I thought that it could make a really nice jewelry box, and would be a fairly easy project. I ripped the guts out of the box and lightly sanded the exterior for good paint adhesion. I primed the box, and used an oil based enamel that I had leftover from a shelving project I did in my bedroom to coat the box twice.
* this is not my actual box in first photo, as I lost my "before" shot and had to pull one off ebay. My box did look exactly like this one though...I promise.
After painting, the box looked a little plain, so I decided to paint my initial on the top of the box using silver craft paints. I drew my "C" on paper first and then transferred it onto my box with carbon paper. I did not trust that I would be able to freehand a perfectly formed letter "C". You could also print out a letter from any font you like, if you don't want to draw it yourself. I added a new knob and pull to finish off the outside of the box.
Moving on to the inside of the box, I decided which pieces of my costume jewelry collection I wanted to house in the box and then set to work retro-fitting the box. I cut pieces of cardboard and used spray adhesive (use it outdoors) to stick some 1/4" foam or batting (also cut to size to the cardboard.) I then choose Amy Butler's Midwest Modern print for the lining. I wrapped the foam/cardboard pieces like a present, and fitted them into the box.
I wanted the lid of the box to house my pin collection, so I used some fabric scraps to make three strips that I wrapped across the front of the fabric and around the sides of the lid insert so that I would have something that I could pin to.This project took me about 3 hours to complete (not including drying time) and cost less than $35. I think this would make a lovely gift. Here is a breakdown of the materials costs.
old silver box: $10
1/2 yard of fabric: $8
seashell knob: $3 (on sale at Anthropologie)
pull: $4 (Home Depot)
cardboard: free, I cut up a box
paint & primer: free, leftovers
My box even has a bottom drawer!