Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Blinded by the Light: DIY Lightbox

As one of our Christmas presents, mom made each of us a lightbox.  These are all over kiddo blogs, but mom used this one as her starting point and changed it up a bit.  Here's what you'll need to make ours:

- 1 frosted storage container with lid (mom used these from IKEA -- inexpensive and the frosted plastic really helps diffuse the light evenly)

- a light source (mom used these from IKEA -- not inexpensive, but they are customizable and give off some nice light.  and they are on SALE right now.  plus the cord is flexible enough that you can shut the lid over it and avoid having to drill a hole for it into the storage container)

- 1 can white primer spray (like this Kilz)

- 1 can silver spray paint (like this Krylon, which is what mom used)

It's a pretty simple construction project:

(1) spray the inside of the bottom container with the white primer and let dry;
(2) spray the inside of the bottom container with the silver spray paint with SEVERAL coats (mom used a whole can on the two of ours, but that is likely because she FORGOT to do step (1));
(3) assemble lights and place in bottom once container is dry (mom found it helpful to coil the cord on the bottom and place the lights on top - so they are closer to the lid);
(4) close the lid, plug in and play!

These are pretty compact, but so far have been sufficient for some cool activities (even though mom forgot to prime them!).  Of course we'd love a really fancy light box or table, but chances are we'd break that.  Mom did spring for a nice light table discovery kit, though, which has been worth it so far.  We spent our first time with the light boxes doing some color work, sorting beads, and checking out some agate light table slices.  Word is mom has much up her sleeve for these, but if you can't wait, check out what others have been doing and where we got our inspiration:

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