DIY Washi Tape Laptop Keyboard

by Kira @ Her New Leaf on January 16, 2012

Look whose little old MacBook got a facelift this weekend! I spotted this idea from minifanfan on Making It Lovely last week and just had to give it my own spin.

I purchased my Japanese washi tape from Le Box Boutique on Etsy. There are hundreds of washi tape sellers but I chose Le Box because they allow you to purchase tape by the foot rather than having to purchase the entire roll. They were very easy to interact with and I would definitely recommend them if you’re looking to purchase washi tape!

I chose these ten patterns but only ended up using eight of them on my keyboard. The purple and blue patterns looked a bit more opaque than the others when applied to the keys and I’m kind of crazy when it comes to matchy-matchiness.

I first thoroughly cleaned my keyboard with rubbing alcohol to remove any dirt or oil that might keep the tape from sticking. Then I created a template from cardboard to more easily cut the length of tape needed for each key. I also snipped off the corners to keep them from snagging and peeling off the keys. Washi tape is similar to masking tape or blue painters’ tape in that it is easy to stick and restick in case you don’t get the placement perfect each time.

I originally wanted to do all the keys, including the small keys in the top row, but the tape seemed to have a harder time sticking to the small keys. If you’re wondering, most of the patterns are easy to see through, just in case I forget which key is the Z or X.

This project was a bit tedious but simple – perfect for a few hours in front of the tv. It actually went much quicker than I thought! I think the corners may start to peel over time, but the time/money investment wasn’t very big, and for now, I’m pretty sure I have the prettiest MacBook around!

What do you think? Have you ever done a project inspired by a photo found online?

{ 189 comments… read them below or add one }

Trademark Guy January 8, 2014 at 3:01 am

What a brilliant idea, it looks so gorgeous too! Definitely worth spending a few hours on!


Josie McHale January 28, 2014 at 10:09 pm

Seriously cool! Stunning and absolutely gorgeous. Lots of love and care went into this project but totally well worth it.
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FREAKDELAFASHION February 8, 2014 at 10:05 am

Great idea

Lots of love,



Krystal March 6, 2014 at 3:45 am

Wow! How disappointing is it going to be when you have to trade in the laptop? Love it! Very creative!


Reese July 20, 2014 at 7:46 pm

Washi tape peels right off so you dont have to worry :)


Felice Panagrosso April 3, 2014 at 11:45 am

Kira, I love this, thank you! The keys on my mac are black, so I’ll have to see what happens. -Phil
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Ashley October 5, 2014 at 9:47 pm

It is still cute with black keys, but I would recommend keeping the underlight on the keys on. My keys are black too.


Ola May 4, 2014 at 3:25 am

This post is worth everyone’s attention. Whre can I find out more?
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Christy May 9, 2014 at 1:33 pm

Could you please tell me how you made your template? This is so pretty! Thank you!


Elaine June 10, 2014 at 6:49 am

I just arrived at your blog. I already love it itand bookmarked it as well. I’m looking forward ti a summer of diy. Thanks for sharing.


Athena June 12, 2014 at 9:03 am

Keyboard vanity! Yours are really really pretty! I want to try Washi tape too!
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Love this idea! I would love it if you joined and contribute your awesome posts at my link party at City of Creative Dreams, starts on Fridays :D Hope to see you there at City of Creative Dreams Link Party.
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Rowan July 26, 2014 at 6:14 am

do you have any problems typing with it, or does it peel off too easily? I’m a pretty hard typer so I’m not sure it would hold up! It looks beautiful though.


Hayley Lambert August 4, 2014 at 10:54 am

I was wondering if this would work with a mac book pro? The keys are black and the letters are white.


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