May 26, 2009

How To Make a File for Your Record Collection

If you are anything like me, you have quite a few record albums sitting on your shelf. While I really love the way some of my favorite songs sound when they are played on my ancient record player, I don't really love the way they look cluttering up my shelves. I spent some time searching the internet for a great storage solution but nothing really suited my style, so I decided to create my own. Please feel free to click on the photos for a larger view.

Materials Needed
• 14" x 14" x 4" cardboard box
• x-acto knife with space blade
• Pencil
• Ruler
• Packing Tape
• Double sided tape or spray mount
• Decorative paper or fabric

Step #1. You can certainly make one of these files, from a flat piece of cardboard, but I decided to repurpose a 14" x 14" x 4" box because the folds are already done for you. Lay the box down; it should naturally fold like the diagram in step 1. We begin by cutting off the top and bottom panel on the left side (only cut the first layer of helps if you slide a cutting mat inside the box to prevent accidentally cutting the other side of the box.) Flip the collapsed box over and repeat. Your box should now look like the photo in step 1.

Step #2 Now cut off one of the skinny strips as shown by the red dotted lines in Step 2. You can then set that piece aside for recycling. Your box should now lie flat like the photo in step 2.

Step #3 Because the box we are using (14") is a little too big to fit vinyl records in snugly, we are going to trim down our structure. Measure 1.5" from the back top, and from the front Top. Make sure to mark this with your pencil before cutting. (Remember: measure twice, cut once)

Step #4 The shape of your flat structure hasn't changed much from step 2, but that is about to change. Measure 4" from the outside edges on the back panel as shown in step 4 and mark that with a pencil line. Also measure 5" from the bottom of the back panel (the bottom is where it attaches to the rest of the structure and mark that with a pencil line as well). We are then going to cut along the lines, stopping when we meet an intersecting line. The shape we are creating is reminiscent of a football goal post by removing the waste piece we just cut out as shown in Step 4.

Step #5 In order to make our file look similar to the ever-popular magazine files we need to create a diagonal cut for the sides of our record file. As shown in step 5, we are going to measure 3" from the back top and mark that with a pencil on both "prongs" of our football goal post shape. Then with your ruler and your pencil draw a straight diagonal line from the corner point, shown in diagram 4 to the outside point of your previously penciled line. At this point you may want to refold your structure into its box form to make sure it fits together, you can also then continue the diagonal pencil line onto the front top panel it matches up with. Then you can cut along the diagonal pencil lines, remove the waste and continue on to step 6.

Step #6 Your structure should now look like the flat structure in Step 6. At this point we fold together the box at its natural folds and begin to tape up the structure. You want to make sure you tape both the inside and outside edges with your packaging tape for a nice sturdy hold. Now you have your finished structure, and the finishing is all up to you! I used my finished piece as a template to cut panels of decorative paper to cover the sides of my record file. I fastened the paper with some double stick tape, but a spray adhesive would also work as well.

I can't wait to see how you decorate your new vinyl record organizer. Be sure to upload your finished projects to flickr and tag it with newnew_recordholder. 

~jen pepper


KimmChi said...

cool! love that template

May Luk Ceramics said...

I just dug out some old records from my parent's house. I will be making a close reading of this post so as to organize my old records.

Karina Glaser said...

Thanks for the tutorial, Jen!