I spend A LOT of time on my cell phone on FaceTime. It’s the best (and cheapest) way to keep in touch with family and friends, since international calling can be pretty pricey (or has terrible quality, ahem *SKYPE* ahem). I talk to my parents every day, always during their evenings and my late mornings/early afternoons. This is not the time of day to sit somewhere and hold the phone in front of my face and just chat. I’m usually flitting around our apartment doing laundry, making myself lunch, working on a recipe or getting ready to go out and run errands. As a result, I end up propping the phone against the nearest right angle while we talk so I can have my hands free. It’s not always a very successful arrangement, and they usually end up FacePlanting at least once a day. It’s not good for my phone and it’s not fun for them!
There had to be a better option. Maybe a cell phone stand that I could keep handy and leave out in the apartment, given how often I would use it. The ones I saw in stores tended to be cheap looking or silly, or if they had any design class then they were fairly expensive. Surely I could come up with something inexpensive and attractive.
I fell in love with wood tiles made of varying types of wood and in different colors at one of the crafty stores here in Tokyo. I had to find a way to incorporate these into a DIY., so I decided to stack them up and create my own cell phone stand. It’s portable, classy, and cost only a few dollars to make. Perfect! I love it.
Quick design note: you could get away with only one tile for the supporting tiles (where I used two). It would be a cleaner look. I liked the way those two colors looked next to each other, so I used them both. OR get creative and use scrabble tiles, making the supporting tiles out of your initials.
DIY Wooden Cell Phone Stand
What you’ll need:
1 piece of finished wood for the base, roughly 4 inches long x 2 inches wide x 1/2 inch tall (give or take 1/2 an inch in either direction). Edges should be smooth and you should like the color, otherwise you’ll want to stain it before you get started.
10-12 Scrabble tile-sized wood tiles (mine were about 1/2 inch long x 1/2 inch wide x 3/16 inch tall). If you can’t find a multi-colored pack, you could always stain your own.
2 clamps (I used c-clamps, but any kind would work)
What to do:
1. Set aside 1 or 2 of your tiles, based on the design note above. Stack the rest of the tiles in a color order that you like. They should make a stack that is 1 3/4 – 2 inches tall. When you like the way they look, glue them together using a dot of wood glue between each. Make sure the edges line up pretty well. Or don’t! You can make them purposefully haphazard for a different look.
2. Glue the stack of tiles to the base piece. I placed mine about 1/2 inch from the edge and centered it. Use a clamp to hold the stack in place and make sure the tiles adhere to each other well. Follow the instructions for your wood glue for how long to keep it clamped.
3. Meanwhile, determine at what angle you would like your phone to sit while it’s in the stand. Use a pencil to make the bottom edge of the phone so you know where to place the tiles that hold the phone in place. Glue the remaining 2 tiles into place at the edge of that pencil line with a dot of wood glue. I left about 1 1/2 inches between the stack of tiles and the supporting tiles, but that can vary based on your particular phone or the angle that you’re looking for.
4. Use a clamp to hold the supporting tiles in place. Let the glue dry completely before using.
**Ha! I have received a few side comments about the fact that I have a 4s. I am very sensitive about this, especially living in TOKYO. I can’t even buy a case for this phone in this city anymore. Inadequate does not even begin to address my feelings. But I do love my phone.
Let’s just say that there are certain complications with cell phone carriers and phone contracts when you are an expat spending a decent amount of time in the States. I am working to rectify the situation, so please be kind! 😉