Posted in Card making

Portable Desktop

In my last post I mentioned that I was working on a project and would post a how-to shortly. Well, here it is, the portable desktop.

DISCLAIMER: I have seen several versions of this on YouTube; this is not my original idea, it is just my version of a project I have seen from multiple makers/crafters. I am not saying where I saw it because it is a mash-up of various projects from multiple YouTubers.

Now that the pleasantries are out of the way, how about a materials list.

  • Chipboard or a cereal box cut at
    • 2 – 9″x6″
    • 2 – 9″x1″
    • 1 – 9″x4″           
  • Strong double-sided adhesive, I use the 2″, 4″ and 6″ wide adhesive from
  • 5 sheets of 12×12 paper, preferably cardstock. You will need 2 for the outer cover and 2 for the inner cover and it is best if they match. The other is for making bands to hold your notebook and making pockets.
  • Velcro or magnets for the closure.
  • Scissors or an exacto knife, embellishments of your choice, and items to put into your portable desktop.

After you have cut your chipboard, you will need to join 2 sheets of 12×12 paper to make the outer cover. To do this use glue or double sided tape to adhere about a quarter inch of one sheet to the matching sheet, making sure that if there is a pattern it is all in the same direction.

Cover one side of each piece of chipboard in double sided adhesive and adhere to the wrong side of your joined paper as follows:

  • From the left side, leaving 3/4″ – 1″ of paper exposed on the side and bottom, place down one 9″x 6″ piece of chipboard.
  • Leave a small gap, around 1/8″ and place down one 9″x 1″ piece.
  • Leaving a 1/8″ gap between each place another 9″x 6″ piece, then a 9″x 1″ piece, and finally the 9″ x 4 inch piece.

There will be excess paper along the top and right side; trim these leaving 3/4″ to 1″ of exposed paper. Miter the corners (cut them off at an angle) leaving around 1/8″ of paper at each corner. Fold the paper around the edges of the chipboard. Fold along each gap between the chipboard pieces to create the shape of the portfolio, then open it back up.

Flip the project over onto the wrong side and cover the exposed chipboard with adhesive, then fold the edges over and adhere. Trim each piece of your liner paper to a 8 3/4″ height. Run a line of liquid glue along the paper you previously folded over and adhered. Place your liner paper down, leaving about a 1/4″ margin. This will take both sheets, it is your choice if you trim both pieces to half the needed length or if you just trim off the excess on the second piece.

From here on this is a custom project, you do not have to do it the way I do. Whatever you decide to do, I recommend making it refillable by using bands made of scrap paper, or using Velcro. Here are pictures of a few options for filling your portable desktop.

Add a Jr. legal pad, sticky notes, and a pen and you are all business. Use 2 notepads and a pen to keep a journal and to-do list. Velcro in a pencil bag, fill it with watercolor pencils and a water brush and put a 5 x 8 watercolor pad on the other side, or a sketch book and pencils. Or Velcro the case to your reading glasses inside and never lose them again. Put in a band that will hold your Kindle case on one side and a notepad on the other.

The options are endless. Let me know if you try the project, and what configuration you use.

Until next time, keep moving, shaking, and making.


I'm a 44-year-old card-maker, fledgling painter, not so great writer, wife, daughter, sister, aunt, dog lover, crazy cat lady, and office manager. I work full time for a local water and sewer utility and find time to be creative in between all of my other activities. Oh, and I have Parkinson's.

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