Organize Yourself: Cardboard Library Pocket

I started gluing these library pockets in my sketch books and travel guides and quickly became addicted. They are a great addition to a Moleskin notebook too. I particularly like to use them on the front of the little cardboard covered notebooks I get from Muji. These notebooks are just the right size, inexpensive and great for sketching out ideas while the girls are playing on the playground every morning. My to do list stays front and center in the cozy little pocket and I can pull it out without having to delve into my sketchbook.

Cover them with interesting magazine pages, manga, paper bags, or other junk mail ephemera, and you’ve got a very classy place to keep your grocery list. No more forgetting the soy sauce!

For this project I recommend using the lightest weight cardboard you can get your hands on. Think “bone china” of cardboard. Re-purposed manilla folders would work great too.

To make the fabric covered pocket pictured at the top, I first traced the template onto cardboard and cut it out. Then I simply glued a scrap of kimono fabric to the pocket with watered down white glue and then painted over the top decoupage-style with the white glue  and water mixture so the fabric was entirely smooth and saturated. I let it dry overnight, cut off any remaining fabric, and then glued the pocket together and affixed it to the notebook. Easy.

Last minute stocking stuffer?

Click on the picture below for two sizes of free downloadable library pocket pdf templates.

Cardboard Washi Tape Holder

Now that we are getting deep into the Christmas crafting and gift wrapping, we’ve been pulling the washi tape out everyday. I used to keep our tapes in a box in the drawer, but I thought it would be great to have them organized in a way that I could easily see all the colors, as well as take them out and put them back without disturbing the whole lot.

Just plain old white glue should do the trick. You might try a couple of clothespins to keep everything together while it’s drying.

cardboard washi tape holder

You can use this template to create a washi tape holder that would fit in a drawer or sit on a shelf nicely. Of course you can decorate the whole darn thing with washi tape when you’re done.

So do you remember life before washi tape? I don’t.

Dressing up Hashi Stool with Recycled Cardboard Album Covers

During our walk around the neighborhood on recycling day yesterday, we stumbled across two bags full of vintage cardboard album covers. Beatles, Rolling Stones, Stevie Wonder and Roberta Flack to name a few. A major find in the world of a self proclaimed cardboard hoarder; I new we had to extend the life of this technicolor cardboard pile just a little bit longer.

After getting the album covers home, we separated the “hinged” covers from the ones that had a single pocket. I went through all the pocket album covers and cut the parts with colors and typography that I liked into strips of varying widths.

To achieve the glammed up version of the Hashi Stool, I simply glued the various strips of cardboard from the album covers onto the stool and then cut away the  excess with scissors. Then I piled books on top and let it dry.

We used the hinged album covers to create what looked like a house of cards. (reminiscent of my favorite duo Eames’ House of Cards) The large size of the album covers made them easy for Electra, who is 2 and 1/2 easy to handle.

We also had fun making zigzag style fences; great for playing peekaboo with Isis.

Hashi Stool: Cardboard Chair Du Jour

We’ve been on a sort of hiatus this past week. Isis and Electra have both come down with massive head colds while I’ve been trying to get all our packages shipped to the States so that they make it back before Christmas. Pair those events with rain, 45 degree F temperatures, and bike and train as our sole modes of transport and at times the cookie was starting to crumble. The good news is that today the sun came out, we had an amazing day at the park, Isis cut her top front tooth (looks like her Christmas wish will come true) and we finished this awesome project that’s been in the works for a while. Click through the slideshow for tips on how to make a Hoshi Stool for your kids.

(If you are reading this in Reader, click back to the site for the slideshow and tutorial.)


This is a great project for anyone who wants to make something for a child by hand, but doesn’t have a wood shop, knitting skills, or a sewing machine. You can put this project together in the most studio of apartments, and put your leftover cardboard out (or collect the cardboard that you need) on recycling day. We used a total of 32 layers, but you can vary the width based on your preference.


Click the pictures above to download free PDF patterns for the Hashi Stool