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Baby You Can Light My Fire! With a Pretty Matchbox, of Course… DIY decoupage matchboxes

To Be Simply Happy: Docoupage Matchbox

Hi friends! Happy First Day of our Blog! Besides preparing to launch our blog, my last couple of weeks have been full of end of school year activities with my kiddos. I can’t believe another school year has gone by… My son Jack is “graduating” from elementary school and will be starting middle school in the Fall! My little boy will not be so “little” anymore soon. He’s already almost as tall as me and his shoe size has surpassed mine. My daughter, Lola, is growing up too fast too as she will be going into the 2nd grade in the Fall and, she’s growing like a weed! She’s finally hit the 48″ mark which opens up a multitude of new rides at the water park! Woo hoo! We’ve been waiting for this day!

But, what I’m really here to talk about today is DIY decoupage matchboxes! I’m not quite sure when my affinity for them began, but I can’t resist them! They are perfect to keep in your gift closet along with some candles when you need a gift on the go or, to keep around your house for when you need to light candles. Problem is, they (the pretty ones) are not always easy to find in the stores. Enter the DIY decoupage matchbox! This project is so easy I don’t know why I didn’t start making these years ago. There are so many paper and fabric options you can truly make one of a kinds. Oh crap! I forgot I put a gluten free pizza in the oven a while ago and now I have a burned pizza 😦

Ok, back to the matchboxes.


  • large matchboxes – I got mine at the grocery store
  • scissors
  • exacto knife – I got mine at Michael’s
  • decorative papers – I got mine at Paper Source.
  • Mod Podge – I got mine at Michael’s
  • foam paintbrush or regular paintbrush

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox


To make things easier, I removed the inner chamber of matches and laid my matchbox cover on top of the decorative paper leaving a little space around the edges. You will have to fold the paper over the edges later on. But, leave the space where the striking area is. I used a ruler to make sure I had straight lines. I marked where I was going to cut with a pencil (lightly). For this size matchbox my pieces were 5″x 3″. Maybe a tad over… I then cut out my piece of paper with the scissors but, you can also use an exacto knife. Just make sure not to push too hard or you will end up damaging whatever is underneath. Like your countertop!

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox


Using your paintbrush, coat 1 side of your matchbox with mod podge. Not too thick, but not too thin either.

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox


Lay your decorative paper on top of the matchbox and press and smooth out with your fingers. After that I used a credit card to scrape over to really smooth it out. Make sure and smooth down the sides too. At this point, I let the paper dry a little bit on the matchbox (about 5 – 7 minutes).

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox


Go over with another coat of the mod podge to seal. Allow to dry somewhat (again 5 – 7 minutes) and then proceed to the other side of the matchbox and do the same steps.

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox


As for the end. You can either cut off the excess paper or fold it into the box lid and secure using the mod podge.

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox

Voila! A pretty matchbox you can proudly display! These would make a great gift to give along with your favorite candle. You could also remove the matches from the inner chamber and use it for other things! I can’t wait to try with some other decorative papers that I saw!

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox

To Be Simply Happy: Decoupage Matchbox


Note: As for the decorative papers, there are some that feel a little more like fabric. Like the light green and cream matchbox in my pictures. It needed 2 layers of the paper. After the first layer dried you could kind of see through to the writing on the matchbox so I applied a second paper layer. I guess another option/step would be to paint a light coat of white paint on the matchbox before beginning.

This was my first time attempting these. I am hoping that they hold up for a long time. I’ll have to post a follow up someday to let you know how mine are doing. And, if you make some pretty matchboxes after reading this please do share! We’d love to see yours too!


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