Ginger Snap Crafts: back to school desk caddy {tutorial}

back to school desk caddy {tutorial}

desk caddy tutorial #momsguide

A few weeks ago I showed you an awesome #momsguide for back to school. If you missed that post you can click here & check out some must haves & great tips for back to school shopping {like downloading the Elmer’s 1st Day App}.  Something about seeing all the back to school stuff gets me in a crafty mood. {Well…I guess I’m always in a crafty mood…but just a little more at back to school time! ha!} We usually make some back to school teacher gifts & this year I’m even helping my sister decorate her classroom.  Fun! As I was going through the guide it gave me an idea. {I had also told you earlier that my oldest son, Zach is going to high school. Yikes! I know! I’m old! ha!} Anyways as I was browsing the guide it gave me the idea to make a {back to school} desk caddy for his desk.  He is always grabbing my desk supplies, & I thought it was about time he had his own supplies.


As I was browsing the guide I noticed the awesome Elmer’s products that were recommended.  So I headed to Walmart to pick up some supplies to make my son’s desk caddy.  While I was there I grabbed some Elmer’s Glue Sticks, Elmer’s School Glue, Elmer’s Painters Markers, an X-ACTO pencil sharpener, pencils, erasers, stapler & some markers.

IMG_20120802_164354  IMG_20120802_164938

After I went to Walmart I made a quick stop at Hobby Lobby & picked up a wooden tray for around $5 to used for his caddy.  I’m sure you could find a similar one at just about any craft or hobby store.  I decided to go with a zebra theme since Zach has always loved zebras.  This project was so easy.  Here’s how I did it:

zebra striped desk caddy

  1. First I sanded the tray just to make sure it was nice & smooth, & then painted it white.
  2. Then I cut a vinyl piece in a zebra print using my Cameo craft cutter.
  3. After the paint dried I applied my vinyl lettering.
  4. I put a coat of Mod Podge over the top to make it a little more durable.
  5. Then I let the tray dry.  I really love how it turned out!

elmer's back to school

Then the fun part!  I used my Elmer’s products to fill the caddy with tons of fun products.
I used mason jars to separate some of the supplies out like the Elmer’s Painters Markers. I used a plastic bin for the Elmer’s glue sticks.  I picked up some Elmer’s X-TREME glue sticks, too while I was at Walmart.  Those will work great for those tough high school projects.

elmer's paint markers and glue

For an extra touch I added a red letter “Z” for Zach.  I think it added a fun pop of color. I bought the letter “Z” at the craft store, too, & then I painted it red.  I think it was around $1.

desk caddy tutorial

Now he is all set for high school. {I hope!} He has less than two weeks!

Are you ready for back to school?  Are you making any back to school crafts?

Thank you so much stopping by my blog!
If this is your first time visiting I’d love to keep in touch.




I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Elmer’s. #CBias #SocialFabric All opinions are my own.


  1. I love the zebra print! My friend's daughter wants her bedroom to be redone in zebra print and this caddy would be perfect!

  2. Love the tray!!! I need one of those for my office!

  3. I love the zebra! This looks so easy to do - definitely my kind of craft! Great job.

  4. This looks super cute!But, I have a feeling my biggest hurdle would be making sure my children put it back on the caddy. I even bought an electric pencil sharpener just because I was so tired of hunting down our manual one when no one put it back where it belong, but with a plugged in one, well it has to stay in one place.

  5. Such a great idea! I need to do this just too!

  6. Ginger, Darling, you have done it again! I love this idea and it turned out so amazing! Thank you for posting this!

  7. school desk furniture,school furniture manufacturer,school desk manufacturers, school desk furnitures in mysore and Bangalore, school desk furniturers in Bangalore and mysore.

  8. So smart! I love the zebra tray and all of the smaller caddies to keep the supplies organized. Great idea!


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