DIY: Create Your Own Mini Polaroid Magnets

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If I had to choose a favorite item from my childhood, it would be Polaroids.

I remember my Dad busting out that black boxy camera and pressing the button to produce a small white square that would develop right before our eyes. The magic hasn’t faded in adulthood, so I couldn’t pass up a chance to cover my fridge in adorable mini Polaroid magnets.

Since I’m certain there are others who share my love of Polaroids, I wanted to pass this tutorial along! These Polaroid magnets are so simple to create. Plus, they’re a fantastic new way to display your photos.

 

polaroid magnets

What you’ll need:

  • white poster board
  • a sharp X-Acto knife
  • glue
  • photos
  • a 1” wide role of magnet
  • Photoshop

Let’s get started! 

There are two basic steps: 1) putting your photos into the Polaroid frame template and 2) constructing the magnets. If you aren’t familiar with Photoshop, you may want to have someone help you.

How to place your photos into the template: 

1. Click here to download the template and unzip it. Open the file in Photoshop, along with the pictures you’d like to use.

2. Copy one of the photos and paste it into the template file. You’ll notice that there are several layers in the file. One of these layers contains a folder titled “Your Photos Go Here.” Drag the layer with your photo into that folder — your photo should slide behind the frames.

 

Once you drag your photo into the "Your Photos Go Here" folder, it should move behind the frames.

Once you drag your photo into the “Your Photos Go Here” folder, it should slide behind the frames. (Image: Leah Schmalz)

3. Now it’s time to resize your photo to fit! Press CTRL+T on a PC or  COMMAND+T on a Mac. That activates the transform function and lets you size the photo however you like. Hold down shift to preserve the aspect ratio and resize the photo to fit into one of the frames.

 

Use ctrl + t (PC) or command + t (Mac) to easily resize your picture to fit in the frame.

Use ctrl + t (PC) or command + t (Mac) to easily resize your picture to fit in the frame. (Image: Leah Schmalz)

4. Repeat this process for the rest of your photos. Instagram photos work really well because they’re square and just the right size to fit. For other photos, you’ll notice they extend outside the frame. That’s okay! You’ll be able to trim that part off later.

 

It's okay if your photo extends past the frame. You'll trim that part off later.

It’s okay if your photo extends past the frame. You’ll trim that part off later. (Image: Leah Schmalz)

5. Now that you’ve got your photos arranged, it’s time to get the file printed. You can do this with your home printer and some photo paper, or you can order the 4×6 print using the Kicksend app.

 

Now it’s time to make your magnets: 

White glue works perfectly fine to glue the photos to a piece of poster board.

White glue works perfectly fine to glue the photos to a piece of poster board. (Image: Leah Schmalz)

1. Glue your print onto a piece of white poster board. A little white glue works just fine for this!

2. Place it underneath some heavy books until it dries completely.

 

Use a sharp knife to cut around the frame and through the poster board.

Use a sharp knife to cut around the frame and through the poster board. (Image: Leah Schmalz)

3. Use your knife to carefully cut around the edge of each frame and through the poster board. Your knife has to be pretty sharp to cut all the way through without damaging the edges.

4. Cut a piece of magnet to fit on the back of the square and adhere it.

5. You may want to place the finished product under some books again to ensure that the magnet is secure.

 

polaroid magnets3

Image: Leah Schmalz

And that’s a wrap! Now you can use your mini-Polaroid magnets to hang super important notes on your fridge!

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Leah is a freelance writer, photo junkie, and avid traveler. When she's not chipping away at a story, you can find her exploring the outdoors or planning her next adventure. Read about them on her blog, Relentless Adventure.

1 Comment

  • Reply January 22, 2014

    Beth

    Fantastic tutorial! I LOVED seeing these in real life! Best present ever! :)

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