I had a roll of cotton ribbon printed with simple black and white bunnies that I thought would make a cute little nightlight using a yellow/orange LED inside. This idea was from back in the dark days of winter and was forgotten about until recently. Now that the long summer days are gradually shortening and it is actually getting dark in the evenings, it seemed like a good time resurrect the project.
Step 1: Materials and Equipment:
- 10" of cotton ribbon (must be thin enough to allow light to pass through, printed with a simple black design)
- 5"x8" .2" birch plywood
- wood glue and paintbrush
- LED light (preferably with an on/off switch) or make your own!
- access to laser cutter
- CorelDRAW design file
Step 2: Cut Out Your Box
Using the CorelDRAW design file, set the print settings on the laser cutter to cut your box pieces out of .2" thick plywood. I used speed/power/frequency settings of 20/80/20 to cut mine out with a 60 watt Epilog Fusion laser cutter.
Step 3: Add the Fabric Sides
Cut out three squares of ribbon that are wide enough to adhere and glue the edges of the ribbon to the wood around the holes cut in the middle of each of the three sides, with the print centered in the middle of each piece.
Spread glue around the hole on the inside face of one of the side pieces of your box using the paintbrush, and place one of your ribbon pieces facedown into the window.
If your image has a right side up direction, make sure to orient the bottom of your design to the flat side of the piece. Pull the fabric tight and flatten it and leave it to dry. This night light was designed to have the top of the box solid.
Step 4: Glue Box Together
Dry fit your box so that you know how things go together. Use glue and a paint brush to apply glue to the tabs on both pieces you are joining, gluing one side at a time.
Using elastics to hold your box together while the glue dries (photo 4 & 5).
When the glue is dry, remove the elastics and give the corners a light sand (photo 6).
Step 5: Light Up Your Bunnies!
That's it, you are finished your bunny box LED light cover!
Find a place for your light, turn on your LED light and place your bunny box cover over it.
Turn off all the other lights. Nice.
Note: I had planned to use an LED tealight with an on/off switch for this project, but it was missing in action when I went to test out my bunny box LED light cover. To solve the problem, I made a quick, temporary LED light using a coin cell battery, a piece of tape, and an orange LED (photo 6).
If you want to make your own LED light, there are lots of ideas and LED light instructables to choose from:
Here are a few: