Monday, December 19, 2011

From Cards to Boxes! -Little Box Tutorial

We all have friends and family have sent to us in previous years...or leftover cards from the ones we sent out last year. ( If you're like me there may even be many years of leftover cards in a tote!) Here's a great way to re-use those cards! Little boxes to tuck little gifts into!

My wonderful Dad came home from work one night and shared this with our family.  Some one at the office had showed him how to make these.  My Dad is now in a care facility with Alzheimer Disease.  This post is dedicated to him and is in memory of all the wonderful Christmases we had as a family.
I hope this tutorial will be easy to follow and not leave your scratching your head going "huh??"  
Here it goes!

Any size card will do...just don't use those ones with shaped edges.

Here are the tools you'll need to make them. A pen, ruler, scissors and clear tape.

The first step is to cut the card in half at the fold.  The front will be the top of the box, while the back is the bottom.

This step determines how big your box is going to be.  Generally,  a 1 inch high side will be the best, but you can make them smaller or bigger depending on the measurements you use.
I used a 1 inch measurement in this example.
Take the back of the card first and measure in from each side exactly 1 inch and mark with a dot. Next join the dots so that along each side you have drawn a line 1 inch from the edges.
Now for the top of the card, which will be the top of the box, you will need to make it slightly bigger so it will fit over the bottom.  To do this, measure the same as for the bottom, but make your 'dot mark' a little closer to the edge. To rephrase that, instead of marking at exactly the 1 inch mark on the ruler, mark the 9/10ths mark. I find that is usually enough.

Next step is to cut from the top and bottom edges to the point where the lines cross.  Only from the top and bottom!
This is how your top and bottom should look once you have cut from the edges to the intersecting points.  Now you can fold along all of the lines.  Make the fold nice and sharp!
Using the clear tape, fasten the corner flaps to the inside of the box, now forming the box shape. Repeat this for the top and the bottom.  You can use as little or as much tape as needed.  To make them a little more 'skookum' you can fold tape over the edge of the ends, or just tape on the insides as I have done here.
Now put your two 1/2s together and there you have a sweet little box!
The one on the left in this picture is the one demonstrated with a 1 inch side. The one on the right is one I used a 1 1/2 inch measurement, which makes the sides 1 1/2 inches high.  You can try 1/2 inch sides as well, which would give you a flatter box.
I hope you've been able to understand these directions.  If you have any questions, please comment and I will try to clarify anything 'fuzzy'!!


  1. These are absolutely darling; makes me sorry I through out last years cards last week though. ; ) But I will print this tutorial off and put it with this years cards and make some next Christmas.

  2. What a cute idea! I usually cut mine up and use them for gift tags.

  3. What a wonderful idea. You are so creative.

  4. Nancy HillMarch 11, 2012

    What do you do about the writing inside the card?

  5. Hi Nancy! I guess if the writing bothered you, you could cut out a piece of plain or printed paper to fit the bottom dimensions of the box and tuck it in. My youngest daughter, when she was little, actually thought the writing was part of the whole box idea, and when she made one with an un-used card, she wrote on it just so it looked 'right'!
    Another idea, depending on what you are going to put in the box would be felt or cotton wool to pad the item (like jewelry). Even a folded piece of tissue paper. Thanks for stopping by and for your question, Nancy!

  6. Such a good idea for using old cards. I always feel a little sad when I throw them away. Will defiantly use this idea. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Hi Jackie! Thanks for the visit! This is a great recycling project. It was my Dad who showed me how to make these, so they are pretty special to me.

  7. What a great way to get some use out of those Christmas cards from years passed! Thank you for sharing this at the Talented Tuesday Link Party!

    1. Hi Amy! Thanks and you're welcome! Love'd all the ideas at the party!

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  9. Such a great recycle especially when cards are expensive and you want to save them! Very creative, and I think using any occasion card could represent any box for gift giving, etc. Thank you for sharing this idea! :)

    ~ Robin

  10. Hi Robin...yes, using any cards from any celebration is a great idea. It's also fun to find little gifts to fit into them.-Sue


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