Rolodex In Artful Order: Paint Chip Crafts

I am a visual girl…I like to see things, pretty things, tactile things, organized things.  I love color, paint chip crafts, office supplies, stationery, and art supplies.  I am not a tech-ie and don’t want to have everything including the kitchen sink in my computer files.

I like connection, hands-on to all my contacts, links, codes, passwords, URLs, user names, etc, etc, etc… I love the Rolodex system and this one I found on Brian and Kristen’s Photostream on Flickr makes my heart go pitter-patter.  Oooohhh la la … I want it…BAD!  It is handcrafted and so colorful.

Creative Rolodex

I have always used a Rolodex, but since I started blogging, I needed a bigger one and found one that I think I can transform to look similar to the one I am drooling over above.   Having something so pretty, neat, and organized and in my own style makes me want to work at my desk.  I could leave the Rolodex I found plain and boring, but by adding some stylish touches to it will elevate the time spent working at my desk into an extraordinary experience.

I found this Rolodex at a local discount store.



Here is what my new Rolodex looked like right out of it’s clam-shell packaging.  Very business like and practical, not my style,  so I took it apart.  The little blue logo on the front comes off easily.

Paint chip Crafts transform a rolodex

This is the base that holds the cards.

Paint chip crafts DIY Rolodex

These are just your ordinary brown lunch bags that I ripped up to used to decoratively cover the base. You could use just about any paper to cover the base. Other options to consider – maps, pages from an old phone book, gift wrap, scrapbook paper,  fabric, paper place-mats from your favorite diner – let your imagination and personal style guide you.

Mod Podge on Rolodex

I used a 1″ paint brush and Mod Podge to apply the ripped up lunch bags to the base.  I kept the runner for the cards free of the paper and Mod Podge so that the cards would still go up and down the runners smoothly.

How to personalize a Rolodex

and I let it dry for about an hour on a foam plate.

Ripped Up Lunch Bag used as decorative paper on Rolodex

No, it is not a toaster!

Paint chip crafts  rolodex

This is the best part – when you create paint chip crafts – part of your project is free.  I went to the paint store and picked out paint chips in all my favorite colors to make the tabs.  They are the perfect weight of paper for making dividers.

Decorating with Paint Chips

I made 1,2,3 templates – right , middle, left tabs out of one of the Rolodex cards and taped a tab I made onto each one to use as tracing templates.

Rolodex tabs

I found graph paper and colored index cards at Walmart for a few dollars to make some decorative cards like Brain and Kristen used.

WalMart Index Cards

I then sat in front of the TV and traced and cut until I had enough to fill my Rolodex.  :)   I mixed the plain cards that came with the Rolodex with the colored and graph paper cards to place behind each lettered tab.

Rolodex Indeex cards

I then went to my junk jewel stash and found a belt buckle.

collected junk

I made my monogram on my computer and sized it to fit in the inside circle of the buckle.  To protect it, I covered it with clear acetate that I cut from the clam-shell packaging and glued it to the back of the buckle.

DIY monograms

And glued the monogram buckle to my new, colorful, and pretty Rolodex.

Paint Chip Rolodex

I used a piece of textured wallpaper on the front tab.

Paint Chip Decorating Ideas

Creative Ideas using Paint Chips

I am in love. Crafting with paint chip samples is fun.    Thank you Brian and Kristen for providing the inspiration.

Decorating Ideas using paint chip crafts


Transform a boring Rolodex with paint chips





  1. says

    I love it! Good lawd, that cutting and trimming must have taken FOREVUH! Sounds like something I would work on during a Nascar race…

    If I made my own, which I’m very tempted to do, I’d use a patterned paper on the base. I love patterns and bright colors. I’d love to win the giveaway and send you pictures of my version!!!

  2. says

    Thank you for this lovely colourful tip! I took my rolodex home from work last Friday and added some bling to it :-) . Took it back to work this morning, and now waiting for the comments of my colleagues. Can’t wait what they have to say about my new and improved goodie :-) I will put pictures on my blog soon.
    (Please excuse me if my English is not correct, it is not my mother language.)

  3. says

    A project after my own heart –I love rolodex organizers and paint chips. What a creative idea & I love how you personalized it!!! Awesome job.

  4. Yvonne says

    After reading your post (and falling in love with the idea – I’ll probably make something similar by the end of the summer!), I was wondering if a rolodex hole punch exists, to make the cutting part easier (I’ve spent too many years in kindergarten, cutting out little things for my students, so any shortcuts that I can find are great)….and YES, it is out there….and I have a feeling that I may have one in my possession in the future. Neat-o!

    • says

      Hi Yvonne-

      Yes there is such a little gadget. I am holding it in my hand right now. It is made of black plastic and is about 2 inches square. It has a hinge on one end and the other end is where you place the card to be punched. It is called a Rolodex Business Card Punch. If you type that into Google you will see a list of places that sell them.

      I love my Rolodex. I use it many times a day.

  5. Carolyn says

    I like this! I, too, have areas where I just have to have a basic, hands-on, paper system for organizing some info. I just can’t get away from it and put everything into an electronic format, so this would be perfect for me – the perfect blend of crafty and functional! Thanks for sharing!

  6. says

    Diane! I’m like you – love to have things organized in front of me. Which is also good in case something (like the computer) craps out. I love this revamp!

    • says

      Hi Amy-
      Thanks. It is one of my favorite things – I like that is is tactile and visual. It makes my brain happy. Pretty and organized – two o the things my mind craves, plus like you said – never breaks down. I do need to weed it out soon as it has gotten pretty filled up.

  7. says

    Love, Love it. The paperbag and paint chips are so recycled. I have an old roledex that I’m going to try this on (may have to buy a new one)LOL. I’m like you I am very visual and I like paper back up don’t always trust the computer but wouldn’t find great ideas like this without it.Your papersack has a marbled effect looks neat. May try napkins or scrapbook paper or dig in the trash. I like to try and reuse things. I have a cereal box in my room that I will use as chipboard instead of buying. Thanks so much can’t wait to see more.

  8. Jessica says

    Sooooooo cute! Your post inspired me to do one for me :) my husband just said the other day I need to creat a cool “us” rolodex :) thanks for sharing this great idea :)

  9. says

    This is a brilliant use of paint chips. I never tire of using them, their color is always perfect and the price is right (because I pick it AND they’re free!!). I love this rolodex! Perfect for recipes and a heapful of other things.
    I also LOVE the use of the brown, paper bags. I actually did this for wallpaper in my bathroom, I had to use the wrapping-paper sized roll of brown bag material due to the large space. But it turned out beautiful, to see that technique used here is just awesome!

  10. Sheryll & Critters. says

    How I missed this is a wonder, but I love it and I want a Rolodex once again. My pc is getting old, so it is only smart to have a beautiful one such as this.

    I want to do this. I can’t begin to say how long my “to do” list is just from your ideas and beautiful stuff you show us. I found you because someone commented on your shiny desk blog about it and I just had to follow along.

    Thank You Ever So Much!

  11. Connie says

    Can you tell me how you added the paint chips dividers to your rolodex? Did you just glue them to the index Cards? Your rolodex is adorable and functional ! Thanks for sharing.

    • says

      Hi Connie – I used large paint chips that Lowes has for their paints. A few companies have larger chips that are not in a strip. Olympic has larger paint chips, too. After making the template for the card with the tab, I simply traced around it on each paint chip and then cut it out. No gluing needed.

  12. Lore says

    This is absolutely darling. I am also very visual/hands on/paper over technology. In fact, I believe I discovered your blog via one of your planner posts. That was a great day as I’ve gleaned so much from your amazing creativity. I’m going to use this idea, it’s so fun and unique. The paper sack mod podge is another new idea for me and one I can’t wait to try. I’d love to see a room done in it, so leaving here to start searching. Thank you for another fabulous project to work on.


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