1-minute light box

Made on: 
Sunday, 6 July, 2014

This tiny project was born out of neseccity, smack in the middle of another one. I embarked on a big adventure of pattern making this week (something that has always frustrated me!). My first attempt was a pattern for a cocktail dress. Using a Burda pattern as a starting point I had to copy the patterns onto paper and I like to recycle old newspapers for this instead of using tracing paper. I've been doing this for years. Mostly because I'm cheap :) But also because we always have a lot of old newspapers lying around. And I love to recycle! The downside though is that newspapers are not transparent and (dark) pictures make it very difficult to see anything underneath the paper. This is especially a problem if you are trying to follow a thin line for your pattern...
 
A simple solution is to use a light box. Basically this means shining a lamp from underneath the paper to highlight details on the pattern below. I built this simple light box in under 1 minute and it was perfect to get this job done!

You only need 3 simple items for the lightbox
1. A (semi-) transparent box
2. A small piece of wood or something else flat. 
3. A lamp

I used my Philips ambi light basically because this is the only lamp in our apartment that doesn't have a set place and I can easily move it around. But any lamp will do, for example a desk lamp. It just needs to be strong enough to shine through the box (if it isn't completely transparent).
In fact, I think this probably works better if you don't use a lamp that can roll around..
 
The piece of wood is just to raise the box on one side so the cord of the lamp doesn't get pinched and the box remains steady. It works best if it is wide enough for the box to rest on top of it on two sides. 
 
Take the lid off the box, place the lamp right in front of the piece of wood and cover it with the box. I think 1 minute is even a stretch ;)

Oh, and a lamp that angles up would probably also be better..

But no biggie, it got the job done perfectly and I was able to trace my patterns no problem!

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