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Decoupage Organizers from Cardboard Boxes

Updated on February 9, 2018

My office/craft room had gotten to be a real mess. My craft supplies were piled all over my bookshelves, and mixed in with my office supplies. My desk was a total nightmare of bottles of glue and paint, boxes of straight pins, paper clips, notebooks, patterns.......I simply could not find anything. It was really getting me down.

A few things that really annoyed me were the markers that were scattered everywhere and my large assortment of paint brushes that were always crowding out my pencil holder. I decided I needed a container to keep these two things in, so I found a box around the right size and put the post it notes and my glasses in it. It was nice to have them in one place, but the box sides were too tall, I couldn't reach the smaller post its, and I had to keep dumping the box to get to them. I also wasn't very happy because the box was ugly, making my desk look even worse than it already did.

The next day, a seed catalog came in the mail and I was sitting at my desk looking at it. It had so many beautiful pictures of flowers, they were particularly stunning since there was a dozen inches of snow on the ground outside. That is when it occurred to me to use the beautiful pictures in the catalog to cover my ugly little organizer box. I cut a V in the front so I could see and get to the contents, and decorated with decoupage! Here's how:

*Images by author

Time required: 3 or 4 hours

Difficulty: easy

Cost: Less than $5


  • Cardboard box
  • Toilet paper roll
  • Sponge brush
  • Mod Podge
  • Cut Outs with pictures of your choice


  • White glue
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Razor knife
  • Scissors
  • Small clamps


1. Take your box and cut it to the proper height for what you plan to use it for. Measure the V for the front with your ruler and mark it. Score the lines with your razor knife, being careful not to cut all the way through. Bend back to make a straight V. Glue down the flaps and clamp until dry

2. Take your toilet paper roll and trim it to about an inch and a half below the top of your box. Fold it so that it has a flat side and glue to the back wall. You can put it in either corner or in the middle, it is your preference. Clamp the roll in place until it dries. I use the roll for holding small paint brushes, but it would do just as well for pens and pencils.

3. Take the pieces of paper that you cut out and start placing them on your box. Brush the box with Mod Podge and place the picture where you want, and then brush a thin coat over the picture as well. Place your second picture and Mod Podge it down, and then continue till the whole box is covered. I fold the pictures over the top and take them about half way down the sides inside. I do not cover the toilet paper holder, but I do give it several coats of Mod Podge so it will stand up to wear and tear.

4. When the box is completely covered with the cut outs, I brush on a coat of Mod Podge over the whole box and let dry for at least an hour, and then I brush on a second coat, to make sure the whole thing is sealed. Let it dry overnight and then you are ready to fill it with whatever you need organized.

Do you have a decoupage project that you have made? Please share it!

Submit a Comment

  • profile image

    martha061 12 days ago

    I love turning trash into something useful. I love the idea of the seed catalog! I usually just spray paint mine, but I'm going to take your idea! Thanks for sharing

  • Andria Perry profile image

    Andria Perry 2 weeks ago from Anniston, Alabama

    That is so cute. I will try this! Thanks Tracey.

  • BarbRad profile image

    Barbara Radisavljevic 2 weeks ago from Templeton, CA

    What a clever idea. I think I can put it to good use. It's been a long time since I've done this kind of work, but it might be fun to try it again.

  • sarita garg profile image

    sarita 3 years ago from Hisar

    Thank you so much for awesome idea...

  • Jadelynx-HP profile image

    Tracey Boyer 3 years ago from Michigan

    @Brite-Ideas: Thank you! I do love it, I have always been crafty!

  • Jadelynx-HP profile image

    Tracey Boyer 3 years ago from Michigan

    @Elsie Hagley: If it isn't, you can make your own. I have a recipe on my Decoupage Diva lens, it is just white glue and water.

  • Elsie Hagley profile image

    Elsie Hagley 3 years ago from New Zealand

    That's a nice idea, you can make them to suit your decor. Doesn't seem to hard to me and as I haven't done it before, I will follow your How-to and everything should be perfect. i like the idea of painting it twice with Mod Podge, must find out if it's available in NZ as I haven't heard of it before. Thanks.

  • Virginia Allain profile image

    Virginia Allain 3 years ago from Central Florida

    I like it and saves me from having to buy a plastic pencil holder at Walmart.

  • Brite-Ideas profile image

    Barbara Tremblay Cipak 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada

    it looks great - and I'm always impressed at the patience it takes to do these projects - although, you're a natural and you love it, so I'm sure it's a natural process for you! great page too

  • aka-rms profile image

    Robin S 3 years ago from USA

    Great idea!

  • Merrci profile image

    Merry Citarella 3 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

    It came out very pretty! Clever idea!

  • profile image

    Ruthi 3 years ago

    What a clever way of using decoupage and magazine pictures to get your craft supplies organized. Splendid, Jadelynx! And your instructions for others is simple to follow, too, thank you.

  • linfcor profile image

    Linda F Correa 3 years ago from Spring Hill Florida

    Nice Idea ! I get lots of catalogs too and send them to my recycling pile. I may just dig them up and follow your idea.