Friday, November 11, 2011

How To: Turn a Bread Box into a Charging Station

This pretty little unnassuming number is one of my most recent accomplishments. It has been in the works since July or August. Yup. I think I received the breadbox from a friend in July, and it was sanded and painted in August. But I was two(ish) months finding just the right knobs, a grounded extension cord and then waiting for a drill to come back home. (Captain awesome has about seven hundred but you think I could have just one?!) Anyways, it was all worth it because looky what it does!
That's right! It is a handy dandy (and might I say beautiful) gadget charging station! On that shel is a Nintendo DS, my Blackberry and the battery charger for my brand new Olympus Pen camera. There is also room for Captain Awesome's Blackberry. We are not against Ipods, we are just not cool enough for them (But we are accepting donations and sponsorships.).
Look at that neat and tidy awesomeness. Seriously. See those cable ties? Reusable little numbers called Q-KNots from UT Wire. They are great! This really speaks to The Storage Geek in me you know?

Would you like to make your own? You would? Sweet. We can be Geeks together.

Gather ye materials:
Wooden bread box (Mine had one door in the front and a door on top for a shelf.)
Paint (I used Rustoleum Glass Black spray paint)
Knobs (if you are not using the ones it came with.)
Power bar and grounded extension cord if you, like me are not lucky enough to have an outlet right behind your planned charging station location.
Cable ties (again optional but really make take the project up a notch I think.)

Gather ye tools:
Palm sander (Or a sanding black)
Medium grit sandpaper
1/2" drill bit
1 1/2" hole cutting drill bit (I didn't have one but I wish I did)

Watch and learn:
Okay, this is not mine but it is as close as I could find to mine (I cannot for the life of me find the pictures i had of my bread box sanded before painting!). See the top knob? On mine it is fake. The top lid just lifts up, but I added a third knob to deter people from using the lid as a flat surface. I kept the fake knob because there was already a hole, and the sweet knobs I found came in a pack of three. But I digress!

Step 1: Remove knobs and sand breadbox, inside and out.
Step 2: Paint. I spray painted mine with two light to medium coats of Rustoleum's Glass Black. The second picture caught a lot of sun light but looks just as black as the outside.
 Step 3: Put your gadgets on the top shelf so you can get an idea of where you want your holes drilled.
**TIP** Attach your charging cords so you can see how far they stick out to the side. If I had done that, my first hole would have been as far to the left as possible.
Step 3: Drill holes.
Step 4: At the back of the bread box, make a hole large enough for your power chord plug to fit. This is where a 1 1/2" hole cutting bit comes in handy. I did not have one so I just used my 1/2" drill bit until I had a hole big (and ugly) enough. But nobody sees this hole, so don't worry your pretty little heads about it.
Step 5: Replace your knobs. Check out these GORGEOUS curio knobs from Tim Holtz's Idea-olgy line. I had literally been looking for two months for knobs JUST like these in thrift stores and Re-Stores. Even in new stores. Nada. Then I am walking through Michaels, minding my own business and in the clear acrylic stamp aisle they jump out at me. I nearly screamed at mom "I HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR THESE FOR MONTHS!" I think she thought I was nuts. But yeah, knobs in the scrapbooking aisles? Go figure. I hope I am not committing blasphemy by using the curio knobs as actually cupboard knobs. ;)
Step 6: Add power bar and plug in your adapters.
Step 7: Cable tie your chords to keep them neat.
Step 8: Feed chords through holes you drilled and plug in your (probably way cooler than my) gadgets.
Step 9: Add more storage to it by gluing and/or screwing a pocket system to the upper door for more gadget holding space. Do the same to the front door for holding more wires or extra USB cables etc. Plug another power bar into your power bar for more outlets. BUT! If you do this, make sure your extension cord can handle the load. I used a heavy duty one meant for air conditioners that Captain Awesome found for me in Mart-Wal.
Step 10: Bask in the awesomeness that is you and your creation! Seriously, I already love this thing more than my dog. (Just kidding, Sweetie is inanimate objects.)

Hope you both enjoyed this how to and are maybe a little bit inspired to create your own? I would love to see your creations if you do!
Happy creating!

P.S. Seven More days to vote Until Wednesday calls into the Top 25 Canadian Mom blogs at Circle of Moms.