it’s the little things {diy mousepad}

To all you office/computer/desk workers … this one’s for you.

My computer mouse doesn’t really require a mouse pad, but after not using one for a few months, it was starting to scratch the painted surface of my desk. Option 1: sand and repaint the desk every few months. Option 2: get a mouse pad.  I decided to go with option two. Maybe there is such a thing as a cute mouse pad at some darling boutique somewhere, but at my local office store, my selection was: hawaiian sunset, corporate logo or plain black.  Which got me thinking … perhaps I could figure out a way to embellish a mouse pad to make it more ‘me’ … after all, I do use it daily and sort of like my desk to look pretty while I work. It helps me want to hang out here and get things done. Unnecessary? Completely. But sometimes it’s the little things that make me smile.

Does your mouse pad need a makeover? Continue on and I’ll show you how to do it.

Here’s what you’ll need:

:: mouse pad {this one was $5 at the office store, but you could use any old one. Company promotion gifts with obnoxious logos are perfect}

:: a favorite fabric {smooth is best}

:: spray adhesive

:: glass or other round template

:: pencil & scissors

STEP ONE: use a glass to outline a corner cut-out

Invert a small drinking glass and trace with a pencil to create a template.

{You certainly don’t need to notch the corners, but it makes the mouse pad unique.  You can get more ornate with your shape, or keep it a rectangle – it’s up to you.}

STEP TWO: cut out shape

STEP THREE: use the cut piece as a pattern for the remaining sides

STEP FOUR: cut all sides

STEP FIVE: cut 1/2 inch from two sides to create a square

Again, totally optional. I just liked the look of a square more than a rectangle.

STEP SIX: cut fabric slightly larger than mouse pad

STEP SEVEN: take your project outside and coat top of mouse pad with spray adhesive

STEP EIGHT: press fabric smoothly over mouse pad to adhere and let dry

STEP NINE: cut fabric to shape

 STEP TEN: stitch a border using a sewing machine set to a regular straight stitch

Again, totally optional and unnecessary, but after a few days of using my mouse pad I felt like it was missing something. So I stitched a border and now I love it.

And here it is looking all lovely on my desk:

So if you sit at a desk in front of a computer, try giving your mouse pad a face life. I hope it will make you smile.

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30 Responses to it’s the little things {diy mousepad}

  1. Gwendolyn September 12, 2012 at 4:51 am #

    Lovely. Thanks again for the tutorial, Emily!

  2. Leah September 12, 2012 at 5:36 am #

    Emily – how did you sew through fabric AND mouse pad? Industrial strength machine or needle? Curious! Thanks. Great project!

    • emily September 12, 2012 at 7:35 am #

      Surprisingly, my machine did this without a problem. I don’t have a nice sewing machine and I just used a regular needle. It worked!

      • Erica September 12, 2012 at 10:29 am #

        Emily…I just made one with your tutorial! It was sooo easy and it looks so cute! I used a regular sewing machine, needle and thread as well and it worked like a charm. Thank you for such a cute and simple idea. LOVE it.

  3. Chelsea September 12, 2012 at 6:03 am #

    This is totally one of those “why didn’t I think of that???” projects. You’re a genius! Such a perfect project to add a little personality to your desk.

  4. Shelley September 12, 2012 at 6:13 am #

    Another awesome idea Emily! Thanks for sharing!

  5. Pam @ Simple Details September 12, 2012 at 7:22 am #

    Stylish + Functional + Simple = A Perfect DIY!

  6. mary September 12, 2012 at 7:34 am #

    I have plans to do this…. just haven’t gotten around to it… thanks for the kick in the pants that I needed!!

  7. Jessica @ Dear Emmeline September 12, 2012 at 7:44 am #

    what a great idea!! i’ll have to see if it works with my sewing machine!

  8. Emily @ Peck Life September 12, 2012 at 7:49 am #

    This is so perfectly YOU. I love this idea! These would make great holiday gifts. :)

  9. Tanya Hulbert September 12, 2012 at 8:09 am #

    I WILL be doing this soon. I’ve never cared for the tulips on my pad! And it’s curling at the edges anyway. So much cuter! Thanks!

  10. Brenda September 12, 2012 at 8:12 am #

    Awesome idea….custom made to match mouse pads!! I would also use some Stop Fraying spray (or some such product) to protect the edges of the fabric. :)

  11. Alicia September 12, 2012 at 8:35 am #

    so simple yet so special. Thanks.

  12. Catherine September 12, 2012 at 9:03 am #

    Gorgeous! I did this awhile ago to an Ikea mouse pad but without the stitching or the notching – love that notching idea. Mine is round though so didn’t need it. I like the stitching effect but I have found with mine that it is getting a little dirty so I am going to change it again and I wouldn’t be able to if it was stitched. Just a thought. I might try scotchguarding the next one I do and adding some fray stopper.

  13. Rhonda September 12, 2012 at 9:23 am #

    Fun idea and might I just add that your nails are looking great!

  14. Heather September 12, 2012 at 9:34 am #

    I modpoged over the top of mine after and then did a quick clear coat (varnish). Made it water proof and easy to clean!! Love!

  15. Victoria September 12, 2012 at 9:52 am #

    And to think I looked high and low to find the hawaiian sunset mousepad to appease your new dad. His old one with the company logo was uuug ly! I think I will surprise him and make one of these out of one of his old shirts??! Maybe one of his hawaiian shirts??! Personally, I prefers yours…it’s very pretty.

  16. Cheryl September 12, 2012 at 9:56 am #

    I love love love this! I have been covering my go army mouse pad with a little sheet cos I just didn’t like the color clash. This makes it somewhat hard to move the mouse cos the fabric moves with it. Now I know how to make it cute and functional. How do you think of these things girl?? I love your brain!!!

  17. Danielle September 12, 2012 at 10:03 am #

    This post reminded me of a different sort of question I have for you. I’m shopping for a good printer to use for printing black and white and color for my own home business, school stuff, and the occasional crafty card. Have one you love??

  18. Sarah Barksdale Design September 12, 2012 at 10:03 am #

    I love this tutorial! I need a new mouse pad really bad, I am using a free one I got from a fabric rep a year ago and this thing is UGLY!

  19. annapolis September 12, 2012 at 10:04 am #

    I love this idea! I, too, am at my computer desk a good part of the day and making my desk pretty would make work more fun. :) Thanks for another great tutorial, Emily!

  20. Nora September 12, 2012 at 11:03 am #

    After changing desks at work, my mouse didn’t slide as easily as before. I cut a strip of clear packing tape that was just slightly larger than the bottom of the mouse, slapped it on, trimmed it to fit, and it works perfectly. Quick and easy, and no mousepad to worry with. If it gets dirty, I just peel it off, and apply a new strip.

  21. deb September 12, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

    this is awesome.

  22. Harmony September 12, 2012 at 12:04 pm #

    Love this! I was just thinking how ugly our mouse pad is-doing this! Actually…doing thIs right NOW :)

  23. Christie September 12, 2012 at 4:54 pm #

    You’re right … I never noticed that my mouse has left some extra distressing on my desktop.

    Cute project!

  24. Tonia September 13, 2012 at 9:20 am #

    Love, love, love this idea. Thinking how cute this would be for Christmas gifts – a custom mouse pad with a coffee mug & matching cup cozy. <3

  25. asia@ September 13, 2012 at 11:03 am #

    I know this is about the mousepad, but using a box to spray adhesive is a clever idea.

  26. Nancy December 16, 2012 at 9:22 am #

    Thanks ! Love my new looking mouse pad ! I pined it <3

  27. Erin Guisbert April 15, 2014 at 4:22 pm #

    Lovely tutorial! Thank you so much for sharing!


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