I'm baaack....after an incredibly refreshing jaunt to Mexico to soak up some sun.  I had hoped to keep up with regular posts from there but it turns out wireless connection was non-existent, so I gave in to full vacation mode, which is probably for the best anyhow.  It's been ages since I completely "un-plugged" and went without interfacing with my iphone and all the buzzy media that comes through it all hours of the day and night.  I heard someone say recently that we as a culture have quite suddenly lost almost all real "down time" in our daily lives, because we're so connected and "wired" at all times.  They felt that real inspiration and creativity was being hampered, because it's when the mind has nothing pulling on it that inspiration can rush in. Anyhow, I'm back now, feeling re-juvenated and re-fueled with creativity to share :)

I'm big on organization, especially in an office setting where things can get out of hand if stuff isn't kept put away and in its place.  In my design studio I needed an inexpensive storage system for the stacks and stacks of shelter magazines and catalogues I keep on hand.  

You can definitely find some attractive magazine files out there...I particularly love these fun contrast-trimmed ones by Semikolon, but I was going to need many, and at $18 a pop these were a no-go.

Same with these linen-covered files from The Container Store. Nice, but at $13 each they're not very economical.  I also have qualms about the durability because most of these are basically cardboard...they look good in the beginning but take a beating down the road.
I opted to put my own DIY stamp on Ikea's wood magazine storage bins which sturdy and durable and only $10 a pair.   
I really like the bare wood look for some settings, but in my office I needed them to contrast more against the Behr "Lemongrass" paint on the backs of my bookshelves, so I sprayed them white.  The wood is pretty absorptive so I needed to spray primer first, and then my topcoat.  I didn't worry much with the sides, backs, and even the inside, since once they're stacked side by side and filled with magazines, all you really see is the face of them.  

Next I wanted a labeling system that could change as my periodical collection changes.  These little metal label holders caught my eye, but since I'd be making dozens of these boxes I preferred to avoid the labor of mounting all the tiny screws.  Stick-on chalk labels would work great too and they come in many shapes and sizes, just make sure to get a size that will cover the holes in the box.
25 Label/card Holder Black Plated 3 1/2x1 1/2 W/screws

On the same shelving unit I have galvanized metal boxes that hold all my fabric samples, so I opted to make galvanized metal tags to match.  These inexpensive metal garden markers came with one edge already bent, and I used a metal ruler to bend the opposite edge down as well.
D Series Replacement Plates (25 pack)

I put a dab of gorilla glue on the back (careful not to put too much because the stuff tends to expand and you don't want it oozing out around the edges) and pressed into position on the box.  *Tip: set the box on its back as the glue dries so the label holder doesn't slide down with gravity...a couple of mine did that when they dried.

For the actual labels I just used paint chips, which gives you a dizzying array of colors choices.  I like that my labels tie in with my "Lemongrass" accent wall.

The label holders wound up costing about 30 cents apiece, and the boxes were only $5 each, so for a very sweet price I love this tidy and cohesive look for storing magazines in an office setting!


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