cardboard house

what kid hasn’t transformed a cardboard box into a house or car? well, mine hadn’t until today. we recently got a new water cooler that came in a big box with some extra cardboard padding. just had to recycle some and upcycle the rest into an artsy plaything, of course!

first, N saw the cardboard and asked if she could draw on it with markers. once the markers were in hand, she said she wanted to draw a house on it. a lightbulb appeared above my head (in cartoon world,) and i suggested the cardboard BE the house and she draw all of the things on it that she’d want on the outside of her house. then she went to work on windows and doors, grass and flowers, trees and nests…

when she was finished drawing, i used an x-acto knife to cut out the door. i might have cut out the windows, too, if N hadn’t drawn such cute curtains onto them.

then i taped the two pieces of cardboard together with packaging tape to make them into a square.

N immediately began to bring in the (animal) inhabitants and furnishings.

she set a bunch of animals all around a fireplace, on chairs and benches, and said they were “telling stories and roasting marshmallows.” cozy. she even draped a yellow playsilk over the top of the box to make it seem bright inside, “and to keep out the rain.”

sure, these cardboard creations can get so much more elaborate. i’ve seen beautiful, intricate cardboard houses and birdhouses and furnishings made by others. but for us, this was an impromptu sunday morning thing that just happened simply and organically, just the way i like it. and there’s always room for N’s little house to grow!

this was good for HOURS of play today after it was made… wonder who will move in tomorrow…


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  • oh, you would love this book we just found at the library! ‘not a box’ by antoinette portis. that window box of flowers is precious!

  • I am so glad I found your site today! I am loving every entry and it reminds me so much of me and what gives me ideas I had forgotten about as well as new ones. Thank you!!