By Talia Yat, Maker and Creator
When my mailbox door fell off its hinges for the hundredth time, I knew it was time for an upgrade, but not just any upgrade would do. Being a huge lover of the canine variety, I simply needed a dog mailbox in my life – one that would stand out from all the other dull mailboxes, greeting the postman every day, serving as protector of my mail and reigning top dog in our street.
Creating the elements
I decided to create the dog from acrylic pieces and my Dad’s old steel mailbox (which I spray painted black). In Adobe Illustrator (if you don’t have this at home, you can use it for free in The Edge’s DML), I designed simple silhouette shapes of the dog head, ears, tail, and feet. I added little tabs to each of the parts, and created platforms with slots for the parts to sit in. Also, sketching up the size of the mailbox, helped with designing the parts to scale.
Once I had the vector shapes, it was time to start cutting them on the Laser Cutter. I’ve completed the Laser Cutter induction, but it also helped getting some tips from Mick and Phil when it was time to transfer the Illustrator file to the Laser Cutter software. Also, etching features in (like the paws) allowed me to peel back parts of the backing paper to create a ‘stencil’ where I could then spray paint and peel back. The facial features and nose were painted on by hand.
Assembling the parts
I pre-drilled two holes in the top of the mailbox and added an acrylic platform strip so I could put bolts and washers in the top to create more strength, as it would have to adhere to the roundness of the mailbox arch. It was then time to start assembling the parts and gluing them together. I scored both sides of the acrylic to create more bondage points for the glue to seep in and make it stronger. The ears were glued to the head, and the number to the mailbox. While I waited for the glue to set, I prepared the rest of the parts.
The leg platform strips were applied to the bottom of the mailbox, and the feet were glued into the slots, wiping away excess glue as it oozed out.
I left it upside down until it dried out, and then flipped it over to apply the head and tail in the same process. Once dry, my doggy mailbox was ready to take outside for its first outing.
For more cute pics, follow Thor and Zeus on Instagram @sausagedogsthorandzeus