If you like my tutorials, please visit my other blog LORRAINE'S PLACE to see what else I get up to.

Saturday, 28 July 2012


I've been keeping my distress ink pads in a plastic storage box, but got fed up having to take them all out to find the colour I wanted. Yesterday, I sat down and made this.

As with all my stuff, it's really easy to make and all you'll need is some mountboard or strong cardstock, papers and or paint and your normal tools.

You need to decide how big you want your unit and the main thing to consider is how many ink pads in a row. If making this for distress ink pads like mine, I wouldn't suggest more than 3 or your shelves may bend in the middle. You may decorate it before it's all put together or afterwards. I painted my shelves before decorating the outside to allow for any necessary trimming and then papered it when it was all together.

1. First get yourself a bit of mountboard and keep this for the back.

You will also need a top, a base, two sides and your shelves.

If you use inkpads other than distress inkpads then you will have to work out your own measurements (easy enough) but all I can do is give you the measurements for 33 distress ink pads. Cut enough shelves for whatever amount of inkpads you'll be using.
Sides: 255mm x 80mm
Top & Base: 248mm x 80mm
Back: 310mm x 248mm
Shelves: 280mm x 65mm.

2. Put your shelves together first. Take each shelf and score at 2cm from each end. Be very careful here if using mountboard - you want to be able to fold without breaking through. Fold over each of the ends and attach the first shelf level with the bottom of the sides. The shelves are not as deep as the sides, thereby allowing easy access to grab the ink pads, so make sure to glue them leaving the extra space at the FRONT of the sides.

Each of the folded ends should touch the top of the previous shelf.

Continue until all your shelves are in place.

3. Attach your base and top by putting strong glue along the top and bottom edges of the sides and holding in place until it grabs. I use good old packing tape for extra hold too.

4. Run a small amount of glue along the back edge of each shelf and also along the edges of the top, bottom and sides and then press your back into place. You can use more tape to help you hold it in place. When it's dry, stick your papers in place.

Add any other decoration that you wish.
To decorate my flourish, I painted it with Wedgewood Blue acrylic paint to match my shelves, brushed a thin coat of picket fence crackle paint on in a few places. When dry, I inked with brushed corduroy and then put a medium coat of clear crackle paint on.

Finally, print off some labels, stick on and put your pads into your shelving unit.

There you are..simple eh? I'd love to see yours if you make one.

Monday, 12 March 2012


I was rooting around my altered art, laser cuts and Tim Holtz stuff the other day and kept finding bits in different drawers, so I figured I needed somewhere to keep it all together. So, like I did with my Promarker Storage Tower I sat down and had a think. I had lots of mountboard and this is what I came up with. I decided that I wanted two levels and separate compartments too. It is JUST a box and nothing special, but you may want to make one for yourselves. My box is quite large at 14" x 10" but obviously you can make your box any size you want. Next time, it won't be larger than 12 inches, then I won't have to join the papers!

Get out some of your stash and decide how big you want your box. If you want compartments, make sure one at least is big enough to take your largest item. Get out your mountboard or very strong card too.

Step 1.
When you've decided on the size of your box cut the base to this size. Decide how deep you want your box and cut 4 pieces of board the same length as each side and the depth you want.

Step 1a.
Do the same for the lid except that your side pieces will be much smaller in depth than the main box and the main piece will be just a little larger than your base to allow it to fit on.

Step 2.
Now, decide how many compartments you want on the base. Mine has 4, so I needed two strips of mountboard. The strips are the same length and width as the base. For the depth (if you want a second shelf) make sure that your separators are no deeper than half the depth of the sides. Where your slots are cut will depend on the size of your box and how big you want your compartments. Each slot is cut to half the height of the separator and then, just slotted together.

Step 2a.
Make sure that your separators are no longer than your base board.

Step 3.
If you're making a top tray you need to cut another base, this time make it a little smaller than your main box base then cut some sides and some separators. Your sides and separators must be just less than half the depth of the box sides, otherwise the lid won't fit on.

Step 3a.
Place your top tray on top of the bottom tray and rest a main box side against it to check that everything is the right depth and fits nicely.

Step 4.
Make sure you have all your pieces cut for your box, lid and tray.

Step 5.
Choose your papers and cut two pieces to fit each of the mountboard pieces (inside and outside). If you want to age them, use distress inks (or your own method). I used Walnut Stain and Brushed Corduroy.

Step 5a.
Cover ONLY the inside of the box at this stage - not the outside. I decided to paint my separators with a deep burgundy acrylic paint. When you have them all covered, protect each piece with a coat or two of mod podge or other sealant. This will not only enhance the colours of the inks and papers but it will also make the box more durable. Patience now while it dries completely. Don't worry if your paper bubbles slightly when the sealant goes on, as it dries, it will shrink back. Do the same for your tray. Cover only the inside and the separators. At this stage, I hadn't touched my lid as I was still deciding what I wanted.

Step 5b.
Now you have the insides covered, sealed and dry, you're ready to start putting it all together.

Step 6.
It can get a bit fiddly now as there is not much support so you may have to hold some pieces in place for a while. Just take your time and be patient. Start with your box base. Take your separators and run a strong glue (I use Crafters Pick) along the bottom edges. Place these on the base and hold in place until the glue grabs. By putting the separators in first, you will have something to help hold the sides on.

Step 7.
Now, take one of the side pieces, run some glue along the inside bottom edge and some glue down the edge of the separator and push the pieces together. It will attach to the outside of the base, not on the top surface. You will definitely have to hold this piece in place and push in along the bottom so it grabs to the box base. When you attach the second side piece, you will need glue down the edge that will meet the already attached side and along the bottom, plus the edge of the next separator. You can stick a bit of sellotape around the corner to help hold it in place. Do this for all four sides. When you're happy that it is all stuck together well, leave it aside to dry properly.

Step 8.
To add extra strength to the box (and possibly stop the bottom falling out, lol), add some strong tape over all the joins.

Step 9.
Do your tray in exactly the same way. Separators first.

Once all the joins are taped up you can cover the outside of the box and tray. Ink the edges again and don't forget to apply your sealant then more patience while it dries completely. Always best to be left overnight.

I had by now decided that I wanted a hinged lid, so I only needed 3 of the sides that I'd cut. I decided to paint the inside of the lid and use paper for the outsides. I then attached four hinges to the lid and the back of the box.

That is basically that. Now you can add whatever decoration and embellishments you want. I textured some letters with Tim Holtz Tea Die Embossing Powder and painted over them, then finished with crackle glaze. My lock was textured with salt, layers of paint and mod podge. I also covered the joins in my lid with lace because...ummm, I went and covered it before I'd taped it so my edges were a bit rough!! Doh!

I hope you like my finished box and will make one for yourselves. It can take quite some time, but I think it's worth it. You could tailor the design of your box to whatever you want to put in it. Enjoy.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012


A perfect way to store your metal dies and so easy and quick to make. I've collected so many dies, I'm about to make my third book. Thanks to Craft Stamper for the inspiration.

To make your covers, take two pieces of heavy cardstock or mountboard 7 inches square. Cover the front, overlapping the paper to the inside edge and then cover the insides. No pics for that as I'm sure you've all done it before. Punch holes depending on how many book rings you want to use.


Step 1.
Take a piece of heavy card 8¼ x 6½ inches. Score 1½ inches from one short edge, fold and crease.

Step 2.
You can decorate how you want, obviously, but I'll show you how I do mine.
Ink all around the edges of the top side of the small scored section.

Step 3.
Cut a piece of paper to fit the panel, ink around the edges and stick down. I like to stamp a design up the outside edge too.

Step 4.
Open out your decorated section and fix some double sided tape inside right up against the fold, use tape no wider than 12mm.

Step 5.
Stick the section down and then punch the holes - matching them up with the holes in the cover. I use ring reinforcer's back and front too.

Step 6.
Take an A6 sized piece of magnetic sheet and stick in the middle of the blank section. Usually, this stuff is bought in A4 sheets, so you'll get 4 out of one sheet.

Step 7.
Now, take a piece of acetate that measures 6½ inches square. Score ½ inch in, down one edge then fold and crease as best you can.

Step 8.
Turn your page over and on the edge opposite your holes, stick a strip of DST.

Step 9.
Attach the acetate over the edge and stick down hard on the DST at the back.

Step 10.
Stick your dies on. Cover with the acetate and tuck that under the flap on the left. There you go, done.

Make as many pages as you need. One page will take a complete set of Nestabilities and with Marianne and the like you can get quite a few dies on one page.