5 Great DIY Phone Case Ideas
Easy DIY Phone Case Ideas for Novice and Skilled Crafters Alike
We all know that phones (or “pocket computers” as my husband calls them) are super expensive, and also super prone to dents, nicks, and cracked screens.
Our smartphone has become a necessity. It’s the last thing I see at night and the first thing I look at in the morning. I don’t love all the deal alerts from mass text services, but more than one sales alert has prompted me to make an online purchase. Because face it. The smartphone is our hub for ecommerce and online shopping, working out, checking email and daycare or school alerts, road closures, severe weather warnings, ordering sober cabs, and a million other things.
So your smartphone needs a sturdy, protective case.
Sturdy cases often look quite bland or boring. And really, your phone is an extension of you and your style sensibilities. You have to hold it and interact with it and look at it all day long. Beautiful or unique phone cases can cost an arm and a leg, and many of them aren’t very sturdy.
For a fraction of that cost of a designer or artisan phone case, you can buy a cheap sturdy one and customize it with these fantastic DIY ideas.
These DIY ideas are extremely affordable and extremely easy to craft. Even if you’re a non-crafter. Just remember: If you’re cutting out paper or fabric for your own DIY phone case, remember to cut out a hole for the camera lens.
1. Use Washi Tape to Create Bold, Fun Patterns
Washi tape is inexpensive decorative tape that can be used to easily spruce up art projects (like scrapbooking or homemade cards).
Using a roll or two of Washi tape and a cheapy, sturdy phone case, you can create an amazing custom phone case with fun prints or glitter, chevron patterns, or other bold designs.
2. Use Nail Polish to Create a Fun, Marbled Look
This technique will work best with a clear case so that your colors really show. Pick a nail polish you like and empty it into a bowl of water and swirl around the color. Then, drop your phone case (but not your phone!) into the bowl. You can dip it a few times until it runs or drips in a pattern you like.
Repeat this process with additional nail polish colors that you like. Two-four different shades, that compliment each other, is a good number to work with. But it’s completely up to you.
3. Mix It Up By Using Craft Paper Inserts.
Sometimes it can be hard to just settle on one design. Fear not; you don’t have to be handcuffed to one look for the life of your phone.
Get a clear phone case, and then you cut out different craft paper design inserts. Craft paper is made of thicker cardstock and sturdier than regular notebook or magazine paper, and really built to last. But it’s thin enough that you can keep multiple inserts in your phone case and swap out whenever you’d like.
In order to cut the right size, I recommend tracking the outline of your phone on craft paper and cutting out that shape. It is going to give you the cleanest fit.
4. Recycle an Old Paper Map
Cutting up a paper map can give a really fun, bold, and modern-yet-vintage look to your phone. If you don’t have an old paper map or almanac laying around somewhere, someone in your family will.
You can also print out a map online if you can’t easily find one that you like.
Similar to craft paper phone cases, paper map inserts can be swapped out frequently too.
5. Gettin’ Sticky With It
Stickers are a great way to spruce up a phone case. And while you might think of stickers as kids’ play, stickers have definitely grown-up. They’re not just bright, garish colors or boring baby pastels.
You can find stickers with snark that create great pop culture moments, or ones that center around interests like succulents, clean graphic lines, emojis, hipsterisms, sports, music, high art, or anything fun and random.
Where to Get Supplies:
- Heavy-duty phone case: You can find a heavy-duty phone case online at most any retailer it seems. Check the BestBuy coupon page to get a promo code.
- Clear phone case: In addition to BestBuy, Casetify and OtterBox are great options to snag a super-sturdy, clear phone case.
- Washi tape: you can find it at Walmart, Target, and discount stores. Or for the largest selection, check out crafting stores like JoAnn Fabrics or Michaels. And long-time customers will know that you can typically find a JoAnn coupon for 40% off one item, or a certain percentage off your total purchase. And Michaels coupons are just as plentiful.
- Craft or scrapbook paper: you can find it at Target, Walmart, JoAnn’s, or Michaels. Or if you’re feeling especially bold, and willing to splurge a touch, check out The Paper Source, Uncommon Goods, or Minted. With a Minted promo code, you can generally get savings of 20-35% or more along with free shipping and cash back bonuses.
- An extra dose of inspiration: check out these other awesome DIY phone case ideas on Pinterest.
Go with the flow and see where inspiration takes you. Your phone really is an extensive of yourself. It’s your hub of personal contacts, and your primary way to watch videos, take pics, socialize, and for many, to get work done. And remember: a custom decorated phone case also makes a great gift for anyone with a phone. And if you stick a $5 or $10 bill in the case, it becomes a great stocking stuffer or creative way to gift cash.