diy wednesdays: custom house of cards

charles and ray eames are big heroes of ours, and their house of cards is something we look at often—not only for visual inspiration, but as an example of a perfect design object that is smart, playful and modern. this week we gathered some images from the weekly photo assignments we post on our blog, smarts&crafts, to create our own custom house of cards. it’s a great way to keep track of the things that inspire you, and would also make the perfect holiday gift! click here for the full post and instructions or just click “read more” below.

have fun!
derek & lauren

Custom House of Cards

here’s what you’ll need:
3 sheets of photo quality ink jet paper
3 pieces of 8.5” x 11” cardstock
rubber cement
x-acto knife and straight edge
rounded-corner punch (optional)

1. resize a selection of photos to 2.25” x 3.5” each in a photo editing program such as photoshop, and print them out onto photo quality ink jet paper. we printed 24 photos, and were able to fit 8 per page.

2. mount the printed sheets onto cardstock with rubber cement.
3. carefully cut out the photos using your x-acto knife and straight edge, and round the corners with your rounded-corner punch or scissors.
4. cut six 1/2” slits into each card: 1/2” down from the top and 1/2” up from the bottom on either side, and in the center of each short side.
5. you can decorate the backs of each card with a drawing or a rubber stamp.


I just did a paper on the Eames and focused on their playful toys. I was especially in love with these cards. Wonderful post!

Sophie S

Yay – lovely way to deal out your inspiration board in different ways and pair various images. Only problem – you’d need a room full of interns making them full time in order to build up a proper set of all the ones you’d want. And an old warehouse to house the resulting inspiration castle. I feel a plan coming together…

Árný Hekla

Love-love-love this
going to do this in a kindergarten! (I´m studying to be a kindergartenteacher)


Would anyone here speak enough french to tell me what ‘rubber cement’ is ? Some kind of gluing material I suspect, but which ?
I love this project.


what a great way to use all the postcards i’ve collected… instead of them languishing at the bottom of a desk drawer! thanks so much for this eames-tastic idea!


Any suggestions of where to get such vivid pictures?
I thouhgt about flickr, but the images on are protected.


In an answer to Chamberlaine’s question, if you check Creative Commons they have free-non-commercial use photos by the ton in their image search.