I wasn't interested in spending $30 on a fly box for saltwater flies that I might use 1-2 times a year so I started a DIY Google hunt. That's when I found this blog post and thought it looked like exactly what I wanted, the price was right, and it should be a fun Sunday project.
I headed down to my local fabric/craft store and was able to find everything I needed in under 5 minutes and my grand total came to a whopping $6 per fly box total. Here's the breakdown of how construction went.
I started with the "photo case" from the craft store:
The other supply purchased was a corkboard from the children's department. It's essentially just a firm blue foam on top of a standard cork backing. It fits the box perfectly and the cork backing helps give some extra rigidity (is that a word?).
After placing the case face down on the corkboard, I traced the outline of the box with a pen and then carefully cut the shape out of the foam. A fresh blade in my utility knife made this extremely easy.
From here, it's just a matter of cleaning up the cuts a bit so things look tidy. After that, I made long parallel cuts in the foam for the flies to be placed into. I made mine kind of wide...on my next one I plan to place them a little bit closer together.
Next step was pressing the foam/cork into the box. If you traced the outline properly and cut well, the foam will fit tightly and hold itself in the box. At this point, I suppose I could have glued the foam in, but the fit was so snug that I didn't feel it was necessary.
I placed a few flies in there to test out the box, and was really pleased with the results. I plan to make at least a few more of these in the next few days. For $6 a piece and about 10 minutes of labor, it's a no-brainer.
Hopefully this shows how simple and cheap this box can be and is helpful to someone looking for a quick solution without breaking the bank. Don't get me wrong, I love "nice" boxes from the retailers as much as the next guy, but in this instance and for this use I find this box to be perfect.
If you found this post helpful and would like to check out where I got the idea from, don't forget to look at Dharma of the Drift, which happens to be a terrific blog.