DIY Backlit Photo Box

Hello, and welcome to the start of a new year of D.Ann’s Crafting Whims! It’s hard to believe it’s been since last year since we saw each other! : )

I’m going to start out with a project that may make you want to go snatch up some of those holiday lights that are on clearance right now. I’ve been wanting one of those backlit photo light boxes like We R Memory Keepers makes, but they only come in 8×8 and 5×7 for $30-$35. I wanted an 8×10 box for my dad to put some of his terrific flower pictures in. Looking around the web, that size runs $80-100+. Yikes!

So, when I was browsing through Hobby Lobby’s 90% off clearance section and saw this combo, I couldn’t resist the whim to try to do it myself:

On the left, an 8×10 shadow box photo frame on sale for $1.80 (marked down from $18) and a gaudy 8×8 backlit sign on sale for $2.50 (marked down from $25). So, all I had to do was transfer the guts of the backlit sign to the photo frame and I’d have my own DIY 8×10 backlit photo box for a whopping $4.30 (+ tax and photo paper)…. now THAT’s more in line with my budget!

The inside of the backlit sign was basically holiday lights poked through wood strips to hide the wiring. So all you would need is something similar to hold holiday lights and a switch box to wire them up to (or just leave the plug if you want)… unless you got some battery operated ones that come with a switch.

I took off the felt backing in my shadow box frame, cut out a hole for the switch, and covered the back with aluminum foil to better reflect the light. Note: the backlit sign came with a tester button that has its own little battery in it… I can take this apart and use it with Chibitronics lights on some cards (like THIS one I made a few weeks ago.)

Always love a two-fer! I printed up one of my water lily photos on some We R Memory Keepers Photo Lights printable backlit film to get them started until dad could choose what one he wanted to print and put in the backlit frame…

When I first closed it up I was unhappy to see that the print was so transparent that you could see the guts of the inside workings right through the picture. Argh!

Then I added a couple of pieces of vellum and that solved the problem. Whew!

Mom and dad really liked it and are leaving my water lily picture in it for now.

I scarfed another set of these from a different Hobby Lobby store’s clearance section and will be making one of these for me, too. The photo is pretty easy to switch out, so you could have one for each season, or just change it up whenever you feel like it. I think that it would be fairly easy to do from scratch using holiday lights. You’ll have to let me know if you try it!

Thanks for stopping by today. I always appreciate reading your encouraging comments! Let’s hope this is a better year for all of us!!



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