By: Shelly Reese
Modern technology is great for keeping us up to date and in touch, but it hasn’t done too much for home décor.
Chances are, if you’re like most people, there’s a corner in your house where charging cords tangle and mobile devices pile up, competing for the juice of a clunky power strip.
What’s the difference between your rat’s nest of cords and an organized charging station? A beautiful and easy-to-assemble disguise.
A container for your power strip/surge protector (shoebox, breadbox, vanity case)
Awl (if the box is made of thick cardboard or wood)
Drill with proper drill bits (lip and spur bit or twist)
Hot glue gun (optional)
Decorating materials (decoupage paper, washi tape, hot glue gun, etc.)
Determine the Material of Your Station
The first step to making a stylish charging station is to find the box in which your surge protector will be hidden. This can be something as simple as a shoebox, but if you’re feeling more ambitious, you might try something more substantial, such as a vintage vanity case or bread box.
Decorate the Box
Next you’ll want to decorate the box to suit your style. Your only limitations are your imagination and the amount of time you want to commit to your project.
Paint a shoebox or wrap it in pretty paper and trim the edges with decorative washi tape. If you want to get out the glue gun, you can wrap the box in fabric to match your curtains or pillows and add adornments like buttons and trim.
If you’re a hard-core crafter, you might try using decoupage to cover your container in old postcards, maps and photos. No matter which approach you take, have fun and make it your own.
Make it Functional
To start, you’ll need to make a single hole on one side of the box large enough for the surge protector’s plug to fit through (not just the cord). If you’re working with a cardboard box, you’ll also need to punch holes in the long, front panel of the box through which you can thread your devices’ cords.
Make a hole for each outlet in your power strip, even if you don’t typically use them all. That way, if you acquire more gadgets, you’ll be ready.
After you’ve punched the holes, you’ll want to give your box a tidy, polished look by covering the openings with grommets. To finish up, label each hole with the device its cord charges (Mom’s phone, tablet, etc.)
If you’re making your charging station out of a wood or plastic box, you’ll need to start a hole with the awl and drill it out near the bottom of the box. Be sure to finish off the rough edge with a grommet!
Many boxes have a lip on which you can rest your insert. If your box doesn’t already have one, you’ll need to cut two pieces of wood. Using strong glue, affix these shelf supports on opposite ends on the inside of your box.
Make it Easy
You don’t have to be a crafter to create a great DIY charging station. All you really need is to impose a little order. Collecting all your devices on a handsome tray or using stackable document trays typically used as desk organizers can help you tame the tangle while keeping your devices close at hand.
Having a designated charging station will not only cut down on clutter, it will enable you — and everyone else in the house — to be more organized.
Shelly is a writer, communications consultant, wife, mother of two, and artist. When she's not in her office, she's in her studio with her kids making a really big mess. To find out more about her work visit www.shellyreese.net.