Even though I'm not one to really plan out what I do on any given day for any given project, I will say that when making something for someone else, I do put some thought into it. Here are some things to consider (and there will be other things depending on your project, but you'll get the idea).
- Will what you use show on the opposite side?
- Will you have to cover things like the securing part of brads?
- What will you be putting inside? If it's something easily scratched or will catch on brads, or whatever you're using, you may want to consider another option.
- Will the tool you need to do what you want fit in the project so that you can work it properly? If not, choose another option.
- If you don't have what you want to use, do you have something that you can substitute even if you have to alter it a little? No sense in making a trip to the craft store or wherever if you already have something that will work. Of course, if you're looking for an excuse to make the trip, then I'm certainly not going to stop you :)
If you want to do something that's steampunk-ish, for instance, and you decide to raid your tool box or junk drawer, that's great. However, be conscious of what you're planning on attaching it to. If you're putting all kinds of washers, nuts, bolts, gears and keys on a canvas board, then it doesn't matter. If you plan to attach a bunch of it to this box example, then consider if it will weigh down the paper too much before you start gluing. Not that you CAN'T use it still, but think about where to put it ... like the heavier bits on the bottom as "feet" or where the most sturdy part of your project is.
If you have moving parts (even a lid that comes off) be aware of where you're putting something so that moving parts aren't obstructed ... like getting the lid on and off of this box. Too much stuff on the side of the lid too low and you'll get the lid stuck (or it might fall in the box from the weight and you won't be able to get it out).
And the most IMPORTANT thing folks forget: It's not finished until it's ALL finished. This means the back and the bottom and the inside of whatever you're working on. There are those that are of the mind that "what's on the bottom (or behind me) doesn't matter" and while this may be true in some cases, inevitably you will have someone who will look there to see if it's finished properly. Properly means it's ALL finished. Brad tails covered, glue covered, unfinished edges covered (unless that's intentional) ... all of it. Quality is in the details no matter what you're making, so take pride in the work you've put in and finish it. That way when Nosy Nancy (no offense to anyone named Nancy of course, unless you are nosy, in which case you already know that about yourself, so there's no reason to be offended) starts eyeing it to see if you've forgotten something, you can sit back and revel in your smugness.