I cut on end of the box down the middle, including top and bottom flaps, then opened it up until the flaps came together. i trimmed the flaps to make the triangle shape. Then i took another piece of cardboard, folded it in half and created the point of the bow. Then used A LOT of tape!
I attached the smaller box upside down on the back and attached with tape. The smaller box was slightly wider, so i had to work with the remaining flaps on the large box to create a shelf of sorts. I also cut windows, one on each side, leaving the flap for a window cover and then an diamond on the back.
I covered the whole thing in brown packing paper and used, again, a LOT of tape. Clear packing tape.
For the back window, i used a page protector with a sheet of tissue paper in it. I would have used colored cellophane if i had any.
I added the wood look with a sharpie. The sail is part of a bed sheet handing on a dowel rod. I printed out a picture of a ship and then raced it onto the fabric with fabric pen. The flag is a piece of dowel road with a picture i cut from a party bag i found at target.
I have decided to update this post with more ideas from our pirate party.
Invitations: we ended up with two types. The first was the message in a bottle ones from Oriental Trading. Cute, but messy! Then we did treasure maps using packing paper cut into 8x11 pieces, i printed the information, then we burned the edges and rolled with a piece of garden twine.
Food: Hot dog boats (hot dogs with tiny pirate flags), seaweed salad (pasta pasta salad), goldfish crackers, and a make your fruit kabob platter using those little cocktail swords.
Cake: Made a treasure chest. Pretty much followed the video found here: http://familyfun.go.com/how-to-videos/familyfun-treasure-chest-cake-813992-v/
Games/Activities: There was a plank to walk to get into the house which was just a board, then i had pirate bandannas for each kid and offered face painting. Then they got to make a telescope from paper towel tubes with colored saran wrap rubber-banded to the end and they colored the sides. Then we went outside for fishing, freeze dance to pirate music and a treasure hunt. Once again we used the packing paper to make clues. They found a treasure chest full of mardi gra necklaces and plastic coins from Oriental Trading and jewels. You can find the jewels at walmart or any pet store. they are the planter fillers or aquarium rocks in jewel shapes. We also used the jewels as prizes during the games.
Decorations: the ship, of course, which was a hit. the kids played on it a lot and it worked really well to get pictures of each kid for thank you notes. Everything else we kept simple and in red and black.
Here are some pictures to give you ideas!
Hope this helps any other Pirate moms out there!