Here is your goal. I actually made most of it before I decided to start taking pictures of what I was doing, but I imagine some day I'll go back and redo some things. This one is 30" wide, 35" tall, and less than 4" in profile. The French memo board at top left is 14" wide by 24" tall. I made the memo board in a strange and unnecessary way, so I suggest not using the instructions I will eventually give.
Here's what you need:
2 cardboard boxes
1 fairly large piece of cardboard
several smaller scraps of fabric
ribbons, buttons, small photographs, appliques, and other decorative elements
Elmer's multi-purpose glue