Custom Burlap Box from a Shoe Box

There is something you should know about me. Well, there are probably a lot of things you should know about me, but this is most important at the moment!

Did anyone else just scream at the above picture? If so, we'd be great friends. Messes bug me, big time. I'm probably border line OCD. I just really like when things have order and have a place. It helps my anxiety to have control over little things like messy cords, the alignment of books, and the perfect order of the clothes in the closet. Cleaning is the biggest stress reliever for me. I know it's not normal.

For instances like that above, my craftiness definitely comes in handy. I have a little wooden box beside my bed that I drilled a hole through th back of and it is modpodged in pretty paper. I have a reading lamp sitting on top of it and it hides the cord and extension well. I thought, why not make a larger version to fix this problem? I used an old shoe box and cut it down to custom fit the space allotted. I cut holes on either end to feed cords through both sides. This allows me to bring all of the cords from the outlet through the box, leaving excess length wound inside the box, and feeding the ends through to my desk where needed. It isn't perfect, but I like it! And solves my OCD need and looks way better. This of course can be made as just a decorate box, not just as a cord hider. I've included the instructions below if you are interested.

What you'll need: a large shoe box, a ruler, a pencil, scissors and/or a box cutter, burlap (or other fabric of choice), a hot glue gun
1. Begin by measuring the space your box will occupy. 
2. Measure where to cut your box so that will fit in the space you are putting it. For me, I needed a box four inches wide, which meant cutting the box about in half.
3. Use a ruler and mark where you are going to cut all the way along the box, including the lid.
4. Cut along your line using a box cutter (or scissors). Keep your ruler in line as a guide if that helps you more.
5. Take your cut pieces and overlap them, to get an idea of how your box will look. Simply slide them together. Place the cut lid pieces together, also.

6. If you are making holes to feed cords through, mark where they should go. You want to make sure they sit just below the lid when it is down. Mark these evenly on both sides.
7. Cut out your markings, making sure to cut through all layers. If you have a bunch of extra layers now on the sides of your box due to layer the two pieces, remove some of them now. Be sure to keep two flaps on one of the sides and one flap on the other to be able to layer them securely.
8-10. Put your box together, layer the two halves adding hot glue between the layers for stability. Referring to pictures 8-10, I layered my box as so: I put glue on the bottom of F pressed it down on top of E. I glued flap A to B and then side C to B. Lastly, I folded flap D all the way over the sides and secured it with glue underneath. 

11. Now it is time to cover the box with fabric. 
12. Begin by covering the sides, glue the edges of the fabric down to the cardboard securly with hot glue. To give you clean edges, wrap the ends all the way around to the bottom, front, and back. Then take a long piece and use it to cover the bottom, back, front, and top, all at once, by wrapping it snugly all the way around securing with glue. Fold ends into the inside of the box and secure with glue.
13. Cut a hole in the fabric where it is covering the holes you created earlier. Fold the fabric through to the inside and secure with glue.
14.  If you'd like, finish with a button closure! Use embroidery thread to secure a large button to the front middle of your box. Using thick yard or hemp, tie a loop and poke a whole in the middle top of the lid. Fed the ends of your loop through and knot on the underside of the lid.

And you're all done!

I'm enjoying having my cords a little more organized, and I know I'll continue to use this box even if I move my desk or decide I want it for something else. Smaller version of decorative boxes like this are also great for charging your phone and other electronics (you just hide the charger and phone inside and feed the cord out the back to an outlet!). 

Let me know what you think of this DIY. Do you have any cord organizing tricks of your own?


  1. That's such a cute idea for cords! I hate having mine crowding up my desk and dangling off the sides. I cannot handle them... and I also get irritated when I see other peoples' messy cords too, haha.

    I'll definitely have to give this a try!

  2. Genius idea! Love me some craft projects and might just have to make this one! It is super cute. Totally understand about cords too....ugh.