Friday, November 20, 2009

Decorative Boxes Kids Can Make

In my work as a nanny in Orange County, CA I'm always trying to come up with new ideas for crafts projects for children. Making decorative boxes isn't anything new, but I wanted to scale it down so that it would be easy for kids to make.

Thinner pieces of smooth cardboard, such as those saved from pantyhose and other clothing packaging can be used to make decorative boxes - an easy kids craft project.


First you'll need a pattern, which you can find at a fabric or craft store or check out these free patterns:

1" Scale Hat Box

Cube Box Free Photoshop Template

Print out your pattern. Tape it on top of cardboard. With a pencil trace the pattern onto the cardboard. Young children should ask an adult to use an Exacto knife to cut out the pattern. Older children can do the cutting themselves with adult supervision. Fold and glue or tape the box together. I'm not including specific folding and gluing instructions here because they'll be different for each box.

Since the above portion of this project needs adult supervision, if you're preparing to go to a babysitting job with young children, you may want to cut out several boxes so that they are ready to fold and secure. That way the kiddies get to do the fun part of the project and you skip the not so fun part of supervising kids with knives.

Decorate Your New Box

I've listed below a few suggestions, but basically your imagination is the limit for what you can use to decorate your new box.
  • markers
  • stickers
  • cut outs from fabric or wallpaper
  • buttons and fabric trims
  • fabric (wrap box, tuck inside and glue)
  • decoupage with magazine pages, used gift wrap, used tissue paper, children's art projects ...
  • a small toy or large bead can be glued or sewn to the top of the box as a knob for easy opening .
Your new box is now ready to hold your own treasures, to give as a gift or use in place of gift wrap for a small gift. These little boxes make great Mothers Day gifts.

If you're looking for more eco-friendly green crafts projects using recycled cardboard then click on over to Children's Sewing Card. This kids craft project is not only easy but made with recycled materials, so it's a green craft project. Green AND easy, love that!

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