TARDIS Phone Case Tutorial

I finally went to see The Woman in Black last night!

I’ve been wanting to see it for-e-ver for two reasons:

1. Dan Radcliffe. ‘Nuf said.

2. I really thought it looked like a good, creepy-scary movie.

I went to a 7:30 showing, at a theater I’d never been to before, in a mall I didn’t even know existed, in a town I can’t find my way around without GPS, alone. Just me. All by myself.

Since I have been wanting to see this for-e-ver, I decided not to let everyone else’s lack of interest stop me.

Here are my thoughts on the experience as a whole:


When I finally found the “mall” that had the theater in it, the parking lot was practically empty. I wasn’t sure where would be the best place to enter, so I found a main mall entrance and parked. Upon entering the mall, I was first struck by the old bowling alley/grandma’s house smell that permeated the air. It was clean, though, so I persevered. The mall itself was just like any other, if a little dated, except that 75% of the shops were out of business, with heavy metal grates locked tight, and black plastic shifting ever-so-slightly in the light movement of stale air. Also, it was completely empty. I didn’t see another person in sight.

Okay, so that’s creepy.

I make my way around, hunting for the theater, and rushing past the empty store fronts as quickly as I dared without breaking into a run.The theater itself was tucked into a corner on the complete opposite end of the mall. It wasn’t deserted like everything else, though, and the smell of popcorn reached me well before I entered the theater. Altight. Things are looking up. The flashing lights of the arcade and the familiar sound of the concessions was comforting.

I bought my ticket, found my theater, grabbed a seat in the middle, broke out my movie stash (yes, I’m a candy smuggler), and settled in………to an almost completely empty room. There was only two other people in there with me. Well, that’s okay; I hate people who chatter throughout movies, so I was sure that wouldn’t be a problem here.

The movie was good. I liked it. I thought it was creepy and interesting. It was a little slow at times, getting into the mystery and the story, but once it did, it was suspenseful and scary. I was stumped by what was happening, and I wanted to solve the mystery behind the townspeople’s clear dislike of poor little Harry Potter Arthur Kipps. Dan Radcliffe was great. Aside from seeing him as Harry once or twice, he did an excellent job of NOT being Harry. He was sad and lonely, and convincing as the young widower.

The end of the movie was not wholly satisfying. And that’s all I’ll say.

As the credits rolled, I gathered my things, put on my coat, and headed out…….to a dark and empty lobby that was corded off, and wouldn’t allow me access back into the mall.

I knew it.

I had to exit the mall, walk all the way around the outside of the entire building, in the dark, alone. Just me. By myself.

I called my sister to keep me company while I walked, but the whole time, in my head, I was calculating my chances, should I stumble onto the apparition of a ghostly woman in black or a gaggle of zombies (I’m pretty sure that’s what a small group of zombies is called…a large group is definitely a horde, but I think smaller groups are gaggles). Honestly, I quickly waved off the fear of the woman in black, because she was just a ghost. She’s probably make me pee my pants in fear, but that would most likely be the extent of my terror and humiliation. The zombies on the other hand would try to chase me down and eat me alive. This, obviously, was the bigger concern.

I knew weapons were out. I had nothing, save half a roll of Thin Mints, an empty bottle of Sobe Lifewater, and my purse. Granted, my purse weighs, like, 65 pounds, but it’s not quite deadly enough to take out a zombie. I came to the realization that the one weapon I had on hand was cardio. I could definitely make it to my car before a zombie could catch me, as long as I was alert and ready to run. I even had sneakers on, so I was prepared. I’ve been training for this.

Alas, I was not set upon by rotting corpses hoping to digest my gray matter, so I didn’t get to put it to the test, but I did make it home safe and sound so that I could create this tutorial for you. You’re welcome.

I first shared my TARDIS iPhone case with you back in December. I had just upgraded my iPhone, and I desperately wanted a Doctor Who case for it, but I didn’t want just some picture of one of the Doctors printed on rubber and slapped on the back. I wanted something unique, cute, and girly in its own way. Fortunately, Jen Yates, of Epbot, had recently posted a DIY Phone Cover tutorial, so I used that as a guide, and created my glittery, sparkly TARDIS case myself.

All you need to make your own amazing TARDIS phone case is a pair of scissors, aluminum foil, white card stock, and TARDIS blue paper (the upgrade to glittery papaer is up to you, although I don’t understand why anyone wouldn’t want a shimmery, glimmery TARDIS, but whatevs).

You’ll also need a clear phone case. I have the Griffin Reveal for my iPhone. Any clear case will do, but I like the black rubber edging on this one; it’s grippy, and it’s bouncy…because I’m a klutz, I know this, and I also know that bouncy is good.

Press the foil carefully into the phone case, being sure to get it all the way to the edges and getting the full shape of the case. Next, either use a fingernail to just cut through the foil where it meets the edges of the case, or gently remove it, and use the scissors to cut the foil along the folded edge.

In the end, you should have a perfect foil template of your phone. You could also lay your phone on the foil and trace it, but sometimes, that is slightly too large for the case. It doesn’t make sense, but it’s true, trust me.

At this point, I traced the foil onto heavy white card stock, so that I’d always have a permanent template for my case.

Next I traced the template onto the glitter paper. I actually traced it onto the back (plain, white side), because it’s easier, but you get the idea.

You’ll notice that I’ve yet to do anything about the camera for my phone. That’s because I found that it’s easier to trace for the hole where the camera is after you get the paper cut to size.

Once the blue paper is cut, place it in the phone case and trace the hole where the camera will be. Then, using an Exacto craft knife, cut the tracing out. You may need to put the paper in the case and keep marking places that need to be trimmed slightly until you get it perfect.

Now comes the really fun part! The first time I made my TARDIS, I hand cut and detailed all of the pieces, but then when people started asking how to make their own TARDIS phone cases, I decided to make a little printable to help you out:ร‚ย TARDIS Phone Details. Just print this out at high quality and at 100% (do not scale in anyway), and cut the pieces out. You’re welcome.

These particular details are specifically sized to iPhones, since that’s what I have, but I see no reason why they wouldn’t work for any other phone out there…they just might not be quite so properly proportioned.

Once you have all of the pieces cut out, glue them in place with strong glue.

Lastly, I drew the remaining panels of the TARDIS doors on with black marker…nothing fancy; just enough to get the idea.

Pop your completed paper TARDIS into your case, put your phone in, and VOILA!!!! An awesome, unique, hopefully sparkly, geektastic phone case that you’ll never, ever want to change. Ever.

If you want to go the extra mile, you can also make the Doctor Who theme songร‚ย (or the latest version) your ring tone, and the TARDIS sounds can be your text tone. At least…that’s what I did. ๐Ÿ™‚ Enjoy!

Leave a comment


  1. says

    There is a mall like that by my house and we only go during the day to see a movie there. Love the phone case. I actually found one on etsy that I had to have. I changed my out going email on my phone to Sent from my TARDIS. No one gets it! Stupid non- Doctor Who fans!

  2. says

    Omg, too funny about the zombies. I always get so freaked out about them after I watch an episode of WD, especially when I have to go bed. I get scared that one is going to sneak into my room while I am sleeping and start gnawing on my leg. I also get freaked out walking outside in the dark!

  3. Jaime says

    For future reference, talking on your cell phone while walking alone, in the dark is not a good idea. It might make you feel less scared since someone is “keeping you company”, but really its the perfect opportunity for someone to sneak up on you and snatch your purse or something worse. One of the first rules of safety is being aware of your surroundings and you CANNOT do that while being distracted on the phone.

    And that concludes our safety tip of the day. We will now return to our regulary scheduled programming. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • says

      I knew as I was typing that that someone would probably reprimand me, but I was okay with it, because, although I was talking on the phone, I was alert…those zombies, remember? ๐Ÿ˜‰

      We weren’t talking so much as being quiet and alert on the phone together. I’m always hyper aware of my surroundings when I’m alone at night, and although I understand the point, I also think that having someone on the phone is smart, so that if something does happen, someone will know.

  4. says

    Thank you! I was in love with your phone when you posted before, and now I can have one of my own!

    And I can totally relate to ‘creepy mall syndrome’. It’s especially creepy because empty malls are so clean and well kept, with fountains and plants and all. Post apocalyptic places should be full of trash, like old newspapers and used Starbucks cups.

  5. Megan Waltz says

    I have never in my life seen an episode of Dr. Who and don’t really consider myself a geek…which probably makes me a really big one. Anyway, does it make me weird that I TOTALLY want to make this case?!?

  6. scatterbrandy says

    So… my daughter broke her iPhone today- I blame it on the case. I suspect we will be hitting the craft store on the way home. Thanks for this. The TARDIS is plenty resilient.

  7. Rosa says

    Darla – is the Griffin case for the iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S? I made the mistake of buying a case that said for just 4 and it did not match the 4s side buttons and silence switch.

    But I LOVE this case and thank you for sharing it with us! I am off to Michael’s to buy the materials. WOOHOO!

  8. says

    Ack! So cute. My phone came in TARDIS blue so I can pretend…. I don’t know anyone cool (read: Whovian) with an iPhone, otherwise I would make this for them. And where did you find the graphic of the time vortex? I’ve been looking for something to photograph my TARDIS cookie jar in front of.

  9. says

    Found you through Meagan over at Scarletta Bakes, and wanted to wish you a happy birthday! Gorgeous site, I’m loving everything I’ve come across. Hope you had a lovely birthday and great weekend too! =]

  10. says

    What a post and creative phone case! I’m glad you were safe and sound from the movies…since you are – what FUN read! I’m here from Scarletta Bakes – Happy Birthday!

  11. kay says

    This is FANTASTIC! I love doctor who and am alos a big fan of awesome technological art, a.k.a. awesome cell phone cases… Have you seen the don’t blink youtube cat video… It’s great!!! I am definitly getting a clear case for my phone this week and will have my very own tardis by the end of the week! Thanks so much for the template!!!

  12. says

    Just ran across you via Sweetapolita and really enjoyed reading about your cinema trip, and thought the Tardis cover was pretty neat too. Looking forward to reading more of your blog, so have made a pearl for you at pearltrees.com so I can find you again easily ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. says

    We are SUCH big Doctor fans…that is, #9 and especially #10!!! (#11 NOT so much) Crossing our fingers Amy and Riversong depart and doctor #12 appears~ I have a TARDIS charm on my mobile that spins around when my phone rings or I get a text. TFS this tut ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Heather says

    My best friend’s text tone is Matt Smith saying, “You’ve got a text message. Text messages are cool!” =) And now that I have a phone that cases are actually made for (no cases even exist for my last phone) I am going to try to find a clear one so I can make this!!!

  15. Kimber says

    I know this is from ages ago, but I just found it on Pinterest. Love it! Can’t wait to make my own. And I’m totally going to make it with glitter paper ๐Ÿ™‚

  16. Julia says

    Hi, i’m in the process of making that phone case because, let’s face it, it’s freaking awesome! but i tried to print out the TARDIS details and no matter what size i set it too (including 100%) it comes out way too small. is it my computer or is it some sort of glitch? please help!

    • says

      Hi Julia, I’m sorry, I don’t know why this wouldn’t be printing properly for you. I’ve printed it several times myself without any problems. I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful.

  17. says

    Thank you so much for this DIY! Especially for making the printables. I have been wanting a TARDIS case for a long time, but have never found one that was unique or cheap. I bought my clear case on Amazon and with points from my credit card it was FREE! Now I just have to go get the glitter paper and I’m all set! Can’t wait to share it when I’m done!!!
    The Nerdy Girlie

  18. Treyci says

    I LOVE THIS!!!! I live in like, nowhere, Arizona and we do not have a proper craft supply store (insert sigh of frustration here). I re-pinned this tutorial with the intention of eventually finding glittery paper (it would be slightly less awesome if it were just blue) and had resigned myself to the fact that it would have to wait until I got to go into a city to a craft shop. Today I was school shopping with my kids and I found something….not glitter paper…but a glitter FOLDER…that I am currently cutting to make this ๐Ÿ™‚ thanks for being awesome!!! (also I am glad I’m not the only one who is aware that zombies may in fact be around)



  1. […] You know that for every girly-girl, glam thing that I love, I have an equal and opposite geektastic obsession (sure, I own a bazillion frilly dresses and more nail polish than I know what to do with, but I also watch reruns of Battlestar Galactice while I craft a new Harry Potter shirt for myself). One of my favorite things to do is to combine those two sides of myself to create happy girl-geek joy, like my glittery TARDIS phone case. […]