Friday, August 23, 2013

DIY Wall Files w/Printable Labels

Posted by Devin

School has started again and that means one thing: lots of random papers. If you have been reading this blog much, you already know that I really love clean surfaces and clutter makes me... what's the right word... "itchy?" That's what my 8 year-old calls it, anyways. To battle the paper problem in my home, I decided last year that I needed a wall file in my kitchen. Just a place to collect all of the papers I wanted to keep around but didn't want getting in the way.

I went to check out local office supply stores to see how much a good magnetic wall file costs. Holy moly! They were kinda expensive! So my inner-DIY-diva got to thinking about how I could make my own file folder. What could I use that was inexpensive, sturdy, and pretty much the right shape? What did I come up with? A cereal box!

I cut it to the shape I wanted, covered it with colorful scrapbook paper, made a little label for the front, and I had myself a super cute (and very affordable) wall file! This thing is SO handy. I've been using it for a year and a half now and I don't know what I did before I had it. By the way, it doesn't look super full of papers in the pic, but I just snapped this today and school only started a few days ago. Just wait...

Tara asked me if I would help her make a few of these for her house so we got together and started crafting! Here is the how-to on these DIY Wall Files:

What You Need:
-cereal box
-scrapbook paper
-spray adhesive (I used glue sticks when I made mine but this is what we used for Tara's and it worked great!)
-8 1/2" x 11" shipping label sheets, I used Avery #48165 (This is optional, for the printable labels. You can also use plain white printer paper or cardstock and the spray adhesive.) 

Step 1: Cut the cereal box to size. I drew a 5" line on each side of the box from the top back corner to the front edge and then a line straight across the front, connecting the lines. Then I cut out that section and the remaining flap on the back. See below.

Step 2: Line the inside of the box with scrapbook paper. Take your paper and put it inside the box so that it covers the back and sides. If it doesn't fit, trim the edges so that it does. Press the corners so the paper shapes to the box.

Trim excess paper around the edges of the box. (I forgot to do it with Tara's, but with my file box I trimmed the paper 1/2" above the edge of the box. I then snipped the corners and used this overhanging paper to fold over the edges of the cereal box so they would be covered. Tara's boxes still look great, but you may decide to do this if you don't want to see any cardboard when you're done.)

Remove the paper from the box and crease and press the two corners so they are crisp.

Lightly spray the back of the paper with the spray adhesive and slip it back into the box, being careful not to let it stick until it's in place. Once it is, press and smooth the paper.  

Step 3: Cover the front and outer sides. Take another piece of scrapbook paper and fold it around the box. (Note: A 15.5 oz. cereal box is completely covered by a 12 x 12" piece of scrapbook paper. If you use a larger cereal box you will probably have to add extra pieces of scrapbook paper to make sure it all gets covered.) See below pictures on how I covered the box.

Take the paper off of the box and crisp and press the edges.

Trim off the excess paper by first cutting 1/2" or so above the box edge on both of the two sides.

Remove the paper from the box and draw a straight line between the two sides.

Cut along the line, removing the excess paper.

Snip each of the corners so that you will be able to fold the paper over the edges of the box.

At this point, take the paper off of the box, lightly spray it with the spray adhesive, and put it back on the box, pressing smooth. Then trim off the small pieces on each side shown below.

Now just cut a small square to cover the bottom of the box, attach it using the spray adhesive, and you are done!

Step 4 (Optional): Decorate the box. Tara and I added a strip of polka dot scrapbook paper to her boxes to add some interest and then put on the labels. To make the labels, put your 8 1/2 x 11" shipping label (or cardstock) into your printer and print one of the following (click on the title to open and print):
Our Labels (what we used):

Blank Labels (you can simply write whatever you would like on them, maybe a file for each of your kids?):

Once they are printed, cut them out and stick them on. All done! (FYI: you could also simply print these on white paper and use the spray adhesive to attach them. It's the cheaper option, I simply already had the shipping labels on hand.)

Here are Tara's hanging in her office area! All ready to be filled up! We simply used push pins to mount her's to the wall (push pins have been working for mine on my corkboard, no troubles). If you like, you could always get self-adhesive magnetic strips to put on the back of these as well. You'd probably need a few if you plan on stuffing it with papers like I do. Happy organizing! 

Linking Up With:


Kaci Uipi said...

Ooh I like this idea. Especially if you don't have a lot of space.

Carrie This Home said...

I love this project! Plus it doesn't cost much since you use cereal boxes! Pinning this now to try later!
I'm stopping by from Link Party Palooza (#104 How To Clean Outdoor Toys) Have a great weekend!

Ruth Soukup said...

Oh my goodness, these are SO cute! I seriously have been needing some of these and knowing I can make them with cereal boxes is a huge bonus! Thank you so much for sharing!

I’d love it if you linked this up over at Living Well Spending Less for Thrifty Thursday this week!

Therena Taylor said...

I LOVE these! They look fabulous! What a great idea!

Michele Vig said...

Really cute. Great upcycle! -Michele @

Laura Barker said...

A great idea! And upcycled too. Thanks for sharing.

Amy K said...

So fabulous and frugal! My favorite kind of project! I would love if you would share this over at our blog hop!

Tara and Devin said...

Thanks! Its a great space saver and helps keep the papers tidy! Thanks for coming by!

Tara and Devin said...

Thank you! I love how this is a cheap project. Nothing nicer than having all the supplies in your home already!
Thanks for stopping by!

Tara and Devin said...

Thank you! and thanks for stopping by!!

Tara and Devin said...

Thank you Therena! Thanks for stopping by!!

Tara and Devin said...

Thank you Michele!

Tara and Devin said...

Thank you for stopping by Laura!!

Tara and Devin said...

Thank you Amy! Will try and link up with your party. Thanks for stopping by!

Mandy Hank said...

Tara and Devin, these boxes are awesome! I love that it's using something we wouldn't normally think about and just throw away! Thank you so much for linking up your Thrifty Project with Get Your DIY on this past week. I hope you'll join us at 4:00 today to link up any spray painting projects you have had. Have a great Sunday!!

Mandy @ The Hankful House Blog

Tara and Devin said...

Thank you Mandy! It's so fun to repurpose stuff, especially since it's basically free! ;) Hope to see you again soon!

Anonymous said...

OMG OMG. Thank you so much. Was going to spend a fortune on those plastic ones. You are awesome!

Susan said...

Just found this post and it is exactly what I need to tidy up the kitchen bulletin board. Thank you for the tutorial!

Tara and Devin said...

You're very welcome! Thanks for stopping by!

Tara and Devin said...

So glad you found it helpful! Happy organizing!

Angela L said...

Love the idea. I decided to hang mine horizontally so my papers wouldn't curl (couldn't find cereal boxes that fit letter sized paper!) Thanks for the inspiration. Now all my kids' papers will be more contained!