Graphic 45’s “February Challenge: Storage” Submission

Let me just start by saying how much I love, Love, LOVE Graphic 45 paper.  The colors!  The designs! Its so easy to be creative with the inspiration these papers invoke. So with the encouragement of family and my absolute LOVE of their designs and paper I decided to enter a piece of altered art in the Graphic 45 February 2015 “Storage” challenge.  I took an old book box that I had purchased several years ago from Micheals and decided to turn it into a Writers/Journalist traveling station using the “Artisan Style” Graphic 45 12×12 pad.


Here is the original book box cover.  I had bought a whole set of these in various sizes and this one was one of the larger ones measuring 14″ x 12″.  I figured that would give me plenty of storage and writing area.

Original Book Box

Original Book Box


First I measured and drew guidelines inside for the compartment bins to hold various art supplies.

Original Book Box Inside

Original Book Box Inside


After constructing the compartments and adding the writing table I used gesso to bind and strengthen the chipboard.  I split the writing table into two parts because i thought it would be easier to access the “pen” compartment without having to lift the entire writing area.

Completed chipboard construction of writing table and compartments.

Completed chipboard construction of writing table and compartments.


Next I added the file folder pockets for the paper storage to the inside of the lid.  I also used a complimenting washi tape around the edges of the writing area and pen lid.

Interior lid with pockets for holding paper.

Interior lid with pockets for holding paper.


Because the pattern paper I used was so busy on the pockets I wanted something on the writing area that complimented but did not over power all the colors and graphic elements. Great thing about Graphic 45 is that they always have two sides for each print that work together.

Writing table and pin bin lids.

Writing table and pin bin lids.


I painted the interior compartments a matte black and then added a collection of paper from the “Artisan Style” series in the bottom of each compartment.  After that I applied three coats of a high gloss varnish.  If anything spills it will be easy to cleanup without marring this beautiful paper.

Internal storage compartments.

Internal storage compartments.


I also painted the underside of the writing area with the matte black, added a simple embellishment and again added three coats of the high gloss varnish.

Completed Storage compartment.

Completed Storage compartment.


Final touches on the interior was adding ribbon pulleys to the writing area and pen lid as well as adding a postcard embellishments to the lid.

Completed writing/journal desk top

Completed writing/journal desk top


Definitely enough room to store several sheets of paper and the writing area is large enough to hold a standard size sheet.

Paper display

Paper display


The front cover gave me some pause when I initially thought about how I would revamp it.  There were certain elements that I wanted to keep and the paper wouldn’t look right if I just cut out the parts i would need to in order to keep the original elements showing.  Simply solution…Fussy Cut!

Front Cover

Front Cover


This is the original piece of paper and although it is beautiful the way it is I didn’t find it appealing in my overall design.  I fussy cut the peacocks, left boarder, and the door frame out.  Then I layered them so that the pieces fit into the area .  The plain black background helps to make the colors pop which is exactly what I love and wanted to happen.


I wanted to keep the back cover simple but still carry over the elements that I kept on the front so I went with a full black background and added a simple note card embellishment.  I have given thought to adding some pedestal feet to the box but another option would be to add a clasp and handle so its more of a “briefcase” system.  Will update with pictures if either is added.

Back Cover

Back Cover


Overall I’m very pleased with the end results and surprised with just how much I can actually store inside.DSCF0100