Easy Lightbox Sleeve in Only 10 Minutes

You don’t have to buy fancy equipment to use color therapy. Here’s a quick and simple way to make a lightbox by making a “lightbox sleeve” or “lamp sleeve.” It works very well and takes only 10 minutes or so from start to finish.

You can get a set of pre-cut 4″ x 4″ Roscolene filters from EducateYourself.org (only $22.00 at the time of this writing), cut frames for them out of index folders or other card stock, and staple the filters into the frames.


You need to find a desk lamp that is about 4″ across – about the size that an empty milk carton or Rice Dream carton will slip over. (If its a little loose, you can build up the sides of the sliding edge by gluing some cardboard inside the edge of the carton.)

This particular lamp is modeled after a theatrical light, so it has four flaps that open and close, which I covered with aluminum foil for better light reflection. ( You don’t need flaps, these are just there for fun.

If you don’t have a small lamp on hand, lamps like this can often be found at garage sales or in second-hand stores. Any portable lamp about the size of a milk carton will do nicely.

1. First I covered the flaps with aluminum foil:


The foil is taped to the back of the flap:


2. Cut the ends off the carton (but leave some flaps on one end). Then line the washed and dried carton with aluminum foil, gluing it down with a light coat of white glue. Be sure to leave 3/4 to one inch flaps on one edge of the carton to have something to pin the color gel to:


3. Attach the color gel with a clothespin or binder clip and you’re ready to tonate:


You can remove the sleeve and fold it flat for storage when needed, (although most of us die-hard spectro-chrome enthusiasts never put our lamps away)!

Have a gooseneck lamp?

That works just as well. Here’s how to make a gooseneck lamp sleeve. It’s pretty much the same process, but the finished product just slips over the round lamp.

One Response to Easy Lightbox Sleeve in Only 10 Minutes

  1. Cool idea. I also used a cardboard box but not aluminum foil.

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