Make an Amazing (and Easy) Cardboard Playhouse

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Making cardboard playhouse
Playhouses have to be one of the best toys for children. It makes their imaginations come alive as they deal with their own little homes.

This cardboard playhouse is extra easy to make but looks great.  You start with one large box and with some quick cuts and a bit of extra cardboard you have the house assembled and ready to decorate.

Maybe one of the best things about this playhouse is the cost. 

If you can get the cardboard box for free and use supplies that you already have around the house then cost is pretty close to nothing.

I decorated this in a Tudor Style but you can chose what ever design you like. 

This would be a fabulous gift for a Birthday or Christmas or they can "help" you make it as a craft project.
Making cardboard playhouse 1
You have to start with a large box. In the past I often would swing by the local appliance dealer and ask them for any boxes they had in the back and they were always more than happy to give me one. You will need extra cardboard to make the roof. Try to get a box that is the same width as you first box so the roof will be sturdy.

This box was square but if your box is not then use the longer side for the front of the house. 

Making cardboard playhouse 2
Pull up the front flap and decide how high your roof will be. From the top of your imaginary roof (which will be higher than the cardboard flap) draw an angled line on the front flap. Make sure that is line is straight and cut off the angle. Use the off cut as a template for the other side of the flap and for the flap in the back. KEEP THE TEMPLATE you will be using it again latter.

Making cardboard playhouse 3
Pull the side flap up and lay it on the front flap  and tape it all down. Pull up the back flap and tape that to the side flap as well. You now have the beginnings of your roof.

Making cardboard playhouse 4
Taking the off cut template flip it over and put it on top of the front flap. You will see that the angle is perfect. 

Making cardboard playhouse 5
Mark on this template where the middle of the front flap is and using a piece of paper cut out a paper template. When you are sure this is perfect cut out two pieces from cardboard. 

Making cardboard playhouse 6
Tape one piece to the front flap and cut a piece of cardboard that you will glue to the backside to give it strength. Do the same on the back flap.

Making cardboard playhouse 7
Measure out how much cardboard you need for each side of the roof and cut the pieces out and tape them onto the roof. Tape all seams very well to make it sturdy. 

You now have your basic house. (Told you it was easy).

When it comes to decorating a cardboard playhouse you have many options. You can paint it with primer and then use any indoor paint on it but it has to be applied in very thin coats so the cardboard does not soak through and warp. You can cover it with Bristol Board, wall paper, craft paper, construction paper or anything else. 

Making cardboard playhouse 8
I covered mine with newsprint paper that I had crumpled up and then smoothed as I wanted the texture to look like stucco.

I watered down white glue and using a sponge brush I brushed it on the box and then applied the newsprint paper.

Making cardboard playhouse 9
I then took brown construction paper and cut it in 1-1/2 inch strips and applied it to the house with more glue.  On the corners I cut 3 inch sections of brown construction paper and bending the paper lengthwise I covered the corners.

Making cardboard playhouse 10
The roof was covered with more construction paper that was cut into 4 x 5 inch pieces and applied in a staggered pattern. I only used two colors of construction paper, brown and light brown but the colors were different on each side of the paper which gave more variety to the roof.

Making cardboard playhouse
I glued the door on the house and the window as well, then, taking a very sharp Exacto-Knife, I cut out the window. For the door I cut around the top, side and bottom and reaching in through the window with one hand I pushed outward on the door while with the other hand I pressed a long ruler against the edge of the door where I wanted the cardboard to bend. 

For a quick finishing touch I added a paper wreath. 

This door is missing a door knob as I wanted to have a knob both on the inside and outside of the door and I will be doing this with two wooden knobs that I will attach with a double ended screw.

This playhouse is surprisingly easy to make and is sturdy enough to offer a many hours of play time.

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Copyright Ingrid Talpak 2010

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Okay, that is the darn cutest thing I have ever seen! And my kids already always like the box better than whatever came in it, so this just takes it up a notch. Thanks for being inspiring!

This is definitely the cutest cardboard playhouse I've ever seen. I've done one a couple time with my kids, and I'm embarrassed. Mine just had a hole for a window and door. Done. This is fabulous.

loving this sweet playhouse. I am pinning it to my cardboard pinboard when I am ready to make one. Thanks for sharing!!

This house is so inviting looking! I bet it will be treasured for quite some time. I want to do something like this for my little one when he outgrows the "crush-everything" stage.

I found if you have your kids help you make the house then they are much more careful with it and they treasure it more.

Love this! We have our Kitchen Fun and Crafty Friday Link Party going on now and would love for you to share this!

This is beyond cute. Would love if you linked it up to my Craftastic Monday party:)

So cute! I need to put this in my stash for next Christmas. This past Xmas, I used a big box to make a puppet theater.

that is a really pretty big playhouse! i love the authentic wooden beams... so cute.

Oh my gosh!!! I was just looking for something like this! I looked all over pinterest and google and couldn't find anything good. Thank you so much for sharing! (saw you on Skip to my Lou)

This is so adorable! I'd love for you to share this at Mix it up Monday:

I hope to see you soon :)

Awesome! My girls would love this!

Man, the details really make this. Great job!

Jess @

WOW. No detail was spared. I think when it's not longer used for play, you could easily rent it out :). Beautiful!

A bit small for a bed and breakfast maybe.

Ahh! This is amazing! It's so cute!

This is so sweet and perfect--I would hang out in there. Thanks for linking up!

Nicely done! That looks great. Thanks for linking up!

this is gr8 esp for my daughters school project.

Hi Leena!

I am so glad you like the playhouse and I would love to see your daughter's school project. Could you send me a photo so I could put it on my Facebook page?

Wonderful video. I have been doing such stuff for my kid. Recently, I wrote a hub on my experiences of teaching my child learn how to use the waste materials to make houses, nests, pen stands and so on. You may have a look at

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