DIY Accordian File Organizer

How do you store all the Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Birthday, Anniversary, Thank You cards, etc. that you’ve received? If you’re like me, they usually have gone into a shoe box that gets tucked away up into the closet. I like to display my keepsake cards around the house year round, especially the ones with cute and fun designs. They’re like mini pieces of art. It has always been a hassle digging out those boxes and sorting through them to find what I need. So enough was enough. I looked on Pinterest for DIY organization solutions that were pretty enough to display but still functional.  This time, I came across this accordian file on Pinterest.  I love the bow detail!

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I  found a tutorial from Damask Love that gave me a basic idea of how to construct the accordian file organizer. Overall, the steps are pretty straightforward and easy to follow. Like any DIY project, the beauty is that you can take that basic concept and modify it to fit your needs.

So first, I assessed the dimensions and the number of file compartments I needed for my accordian file organizers. I chose my dimensions based off the largest cards I had. I also added a spine piece to give the bottom added support.

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Luckily I had most of the materials already on hand, with the exception of the bookboard/chipboard.  As a substitute, I used cardboard from the boxes that our nerf guns had come in. Yes, side fact, we are adults that still play with nerf guns 🙂 The nerf gun boxes were perfect because the cardboard was thin.  I cutout and glued two pieces of cardboard for each outer piece required. Glueing together the multiple layers of thin cardboard made the outer pieces pretty sturdy rather than just using one layer of thick cardboard. They don’t bend that easily.  I love it when I can upcycle cardboard!

I chose to cover the outside of the organizers with fabric instead of paper. I find it as an easier material to work with and more forgiving if you need to shift/adjust as you glue. The first one I made, I covered with a postard/airmail-themed fabric. But I couldn’t just make one.  So I made a second one with a custom modern diamond pattern. For this second one, I used plain fabric and painted on the design myself.

accordian file cover

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As you can see, the cards fit perfectly in there!  I’ll probably be making more of these in the future to organize and store my other stationary/paper goods.

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DIY Fabric Covered Magazine Holders

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Now that the holidays are over, I’ve been doing de-cluttering and purging around the house. One of the things that’s needed attention was my ever-growing stash of magazines.

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There was no way that I needed to keep all of them. I picked through which ones to keep and which to recycle.  With the magazines that were left in my ‘keep’ pile, I wanted to make some custom storage to display them in, instead of just leaving them stacked in a corner.

I ended up making a few simple fabric-covered magazine holders, and you can, too. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

magazine materials

1. Cardstock
2. Glue, tape, and a cutting tool (rotary cutter or scissors)
3. pencil (or marker) and ruler
4. cardboard box
5. fabric

I chose to use a few Amazon shipping boxes I had saved. They’re sturdier than using cereal boxes. The 1A3 size is perfect as it measures out to 3.5 ” x 9.5 x 12.5″ and will accommodate most magazine sizes.

magazine steps 1

1. Outline your desired shape for the magazine holder. I chose a simple straight line, with the short side measuring  5″ tall.

2. Cut along the outline and remove the top portion of the box.

3. On each side, glue the inside flap to the outer two flaps.

4. Similarly, on each side, secure the outer two flaps together with tape. It’s just like taping up a box.

5. Cut off the rectangle flaps from the unused upper portion of the box. They will be used to reinforce the upper insides of the magazine holder.

6. Trace and cut out pieces for (a) and (b). Glue down on the inside of each side.

I chose to use fabric to cover the magazine holders because I felt that it would be more durable than wrapping paper or cardstock with use. Plus, I liked the texture of fabric.

magazine fabric

To make the cover I went with a concept of wrapping a present. First, I traced the outline of the magazine holder on the fabric. Next, I marked off flaps where I would fold over edges and corners. The cutout as shown above is the end result. It literally was like wrapping a present, using glue adhere the fabric to the magazine holder. Lastly, I cutout cardstock to line the inside and to nicely conceal the edges of the fabric. Here’s how they turned out.

Magazine final

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I love the way they look. They are a great new addition to my bookshelf! Have a Happy Monday!