DIY Decorative File Folders

I have a new quickie craft!

Yes, I’m still cleaning…AND organizing…and talking about OHIO (more on that later).

I can’t wait to get back to my bigger projects (and the list that keeps forming in my head), but there are still some basic things that need to be addressed out of homage to my title of “homemaker”. …But even those can result in an unplanned “quickie craft”…like these DIY Decorative File Folders.

DIY Mackenzie-Childs Button File Folders

This week, I cleaned out drawers and revised the family “command center”.

This is what it used to look like…

IMG_1115and as you can see… it wasn’t working! At. All.

The requirements:

Large portable chalkboard… for Husband’s tutoring sessions in the kitchen.
Large calendar…for Mrs. Forgetful.
Paper glut holder…

This was step one of the new set up…which needed some tweaking. (Still on the list, but not today: Put a chalk cup to the left of the paper bins.)


I thought the bins still looked messy…until daughter #2 suggested putting decorative file folders in the bins to hold the loose papers. Loved that suggestion!

I saw some pretty ones on line, but (while waiting for the bathroom floor to dry) an idea hit.

Remember that roll of Mackenzie-Childs giftwrap that I used to make my wreath frame…and my mailbox? Well, there was still half a roll left. I gathered a few supplies and made my own decorative folders!

I have to say, they fit the bill and they took all of 20 minutes to make (including clean up.)


Manilla file folders
Gift wrap
Spray adhesive
Packing tape
Floral wire
Elastic cording (or a ponytail elastic)

Here are the steps:
Cut a length of gift wrap that’s about 1.5 times the length of an opened manilla folder.
Cut the width so it’s about 1.5” wider than the folder.DIY File Folders 1


Fold the sides inward until it is the exact width of the manilla folder to create a thicker border. (I sprayed the sides with adhesive and folded it over—which was a little messy—but very forgiving, i.e., it allows you to reposition. (You could alternatively use double-sided tape…more stability, but less forgiving.)

Decorative File Folders 2 DIY File Folders from Giftwrap 3


Spray the outside of the manilla folder with adhesive and place on the wrong side of the gift wrap.decorative file folders 4


Spray the leftover portion of the gift wrap and fold over to create a “facing” for the inside of the folder. Be sure to finesse the edge corners in to a sharp fold.Mackenzie Childs Office supplies 6


Reinforce the top center of the front and back of the folder with packing tape, then punch a hole about an inch (or so…mine was less) from the top center of both the front and back panel.

.Mackenzie Childs Office 7 Mackenzie-Childs file 7


Wire a button and put it through the front hole; secure the extra wire on the back with packing tape.

mack-chi button folders 8 Mack-Chi folders 9


I used cording, but a ponytail elastic would work fine. Make a loop through the back hole, pull the remaining elastic through it,  and wrap it around the button to hold the folder closed.

DiY File Folders10 Crafts with Mackenzie-Childs gift wrap
It really cleaned up the paper bins and, as an added bonus, matched the platter I display on top of my kitchen cabinets!

Mackenzie-Childs File Folders 12

Cleaning out the junk drawer has left me space to put the important mail, ahem, bills etc., meaning I could dump out that mail sorter! It certainly looks less cluttered to me.

One thing is certain…while I consider other command center options for the future…my new paper rule is Only Handle It Once….OHIO!