DIY Warm & Cozy Christmas Shadow Box to Personalize!

Family Shadow Box to Personalize! | Winter Box Frame Idea

This cozy fireplace shadow box scene is giving me ALL the warm winter feels for a hygge-inspired Christmas shadow box craft.

Welcome to Day 4 of the Christmas Craft Countdown for 2021, where I’m revealing a new craft project every day for 20 days.

Today’s project is a gorgeous layered shadow box for Christmas. It shows a fireplace with a wonderful roaring log fire, a decorated Christmas tree and a comfy armchair with a lovely little cat having a snooze in front of the fire.

This design is special because you can add the names of your family along the garlands (ribbons) across the top of the frame. However, if you don’t want to do that and you just want to make the frame as is, there is a version included without the garlands.

Close up of the ribbon

This project is part of 2021's Christmas Craft Countdown.

View all 20 craft projects!

Layered winter shadow box video tutorial

Watch the video below to see how to make the layered winter shadow box. Keep scrolling for a written tutorial.

Note: This video was recorded with Design Space version 6.17.143. Later versions might look a little different.

Materials list to make a Christmas shadow box

Here is a list of the materials that I used to make this project:

Please note that some of the links included in this article are affiliate links, which means that if you click through and make a purchase I may receive a commission (at no additional cost to you). You can read my full disclosure at the bottom of the page.

Christmas shadow box

Layered Christmas shadow box SVG assembly instructions

Here’s how to make your very own Christmas shadow box using a Cricut machine!

Step 1) Download the file & unzip the downloaded folder

Use the box below to download the cutting files for this project. Please note that this is not a free file.

It is part of the Christmas Craft Countdown which is a collection of 20 exclusive Christmas themed craft projects.

This design is part of the 2021 Christmas Craft Countdown.

Find out more

Just want this file without signing up for the Christmas Craft Countdown? Purchase it here

Forgot password?

Before you upload the SVG to Design Space, you need to unzip the download folder that it comes in.

Step 2) Upload the SVG file into Design Space

Open up Cricut Design Space and click “Upload”.

There are three different versions of this shadow box design to choose from: one with 1 ribbon along the top, one with 2 ribbons along the top and one without any ribbons for if you’d prefer not to add names to the design.

Three different fireplace design versions

Make sure you upload the file which starts SVG_ in the filename!!

This is how it should look after you have uploaded the file:

Uploaded file

After uploading, the shadow box design will show in your “Recently Uploaded Images”. Click on it and then press “Add to Canvas” to put it onto your Project.

Add to Canvas

Step 3) Personalize the design

Here’s how to add a message to the ribbons along the top of the design. You could add anything you want here – perhaps your family’s first names or surnames or a greeting such as ‘Merry Christmas’, ‘Season’s Greetings’ or ‘Christmas 2021’.

If you aren’t going to personalize your shadow box then you can skip straight to Step 4!

Click on the shadow box and then press “Ungroup” at the top of the layers panel to separate the layers.

Design Space Ungroup Icon

Click the little eye icon next to all the layers apart from the one shown in the image below that contains the ribbons.

Hide layers by clicking the eye icons

Go into the Text tool and type out the first letter of your first word.

Design Space Text Tool

Change the font to something a little bit fancier than the default Cricut one! Choose a font that’s quite bold so that you’ll be able to see the letters when they’re all joined on to the ribbon. I used Belwe Std Medium which is a Cricut Access font.

Resize the letter to make it a suitable size for the ribbon and then rotate it and move it so that it is touching the left side of the ribbon.

Add the first letter to the ribbon

Click the letter and then “Duplicate” it.

Design Space Duplicate Icon

Change the text on the duplicated layer to the next letter in your word, then position it over the ribbon so that the top of the letter is just overlapping.

Add the second letter

Keep repeating this step until your words are complete.

Top tip: Place a star shape at the beginning and end of the ribbon and in between every word. This will give you a solid piece of card to add foam pads to when sticking the layers together to give it more of a “3D” appearance.

Finished words

When you’ve finished the words, select all the letter layers and the main shadow box layer and Weld them together.

Design Space Weld Icon

This joins them all into one solid layer which means all your letters will become part of the ribbon.

Welded layer

Click the eye icon next to all the hidden layers to turn them back on. Drag-and-drop the red layer so that it is back in the correct position (third from the bottom, above the two grey wallpaper layers).

Turn the hidden layers back on

Step 4) Measure your shadow box & resize the SVG

Take the back off of your shadow box and take out the spacer.

Measure from one edge of the spacer to the other.

Measure the spacer from inside your shadow box

In Design Space, press “Select All” to highlight all the layers.

Design Space Select All

Click “Group” so that we can resize them all together at the same time.

Design Space Group Icon

Use the width and height boxes at the top of the screen to resize the shadow box design to match the measurement you just took of your frame spacer. Mine was 6.5 inches square.

Resize the design

Step 5) Cut out all of the layers

If you haven’t already, make sure you save your Project before you cut it out.

Click “Make It” and cut all the layers of the shadow box from card.

Lay the layers on top of each other after you have cut them (without sticking them) to check you are happy with the colours and that you haven’t missed anything.

Cut out all of the layers

Step 6) Stick the shadow box layers together

Included in the download folder for this design is a PDF file called “Assembly Instructions.pdf”.

Open that on your computer and use it as a guide to see the order to stick the layers together in, and whether you should use foam pads or glue for each layer.

This PDF file can be printed if you don’t craft near to a computer.

Christmas shadow box assembly

My favourite glue to use on papercraft projects is Collall All Purpose Glue.

It’s SO good because it doesn’t “warp” or bend the cardstock like some glues do. You can use as much of it as you want and the card stays perfect – and it dries perfectly clear too!

To make it even easier to apply glue to layered card projects, I highly recommend getting some of these needle tip applicator bottles to put the glue into.

The nozzles are REALLY tiny which makes them perfect for putting glue in the pieces of cardstock that make up this Christmas shadow box.

Collall glue and needle tip applicator

Some of the layers will be stuck together with 3D foam pads to give more dimension and create the “3D” appearance.

When adding foam pads to the square layers, don’t just put foam in the corners. Place a few pieces along each of the edges of the square to give the cardstock stability and to stop it “sagging” in the middles.

Add foam pads all the way around the edges

When you get to the ribbon layer, try to put foam pads under the star shapes and along the ribbon if it isn’t too thin. This will help the ribbon to “stand out” from the previous layer and give the ribbon a more consistent 3D appearance across the whole of the design.

Adding foam pads to the ribbon layer

Step 7) Frame the Christmas shadow box SVG

When everything is stuck together, it’s time to frame the design!

First, clean the glass on the inside with a alcohol wipe to remove any dust or dirt.

Take the spacer out of the frame and then place the design in the frame. Put the back on and close down the metal tabs.

Tip: If your shadow box isn’t quite tall enough to fill the shadow box then you can stick some foam pads together and stick them to the inside glass, close to the inside edges of the frame. Your papercraft project with then sit on top of the foam pads rather than touching the glass, giving it more depth and helping to stabilize it inside the frame.

Christmas shadow box

I hope that you enjoy making this family Christmas shadow box!

This project is part of 2021's Christmas Craft Countdown.

View all 20 craft projects!

Happy crafting,
Sarah x