How to Make an Easy Paper Box


Paper boxes are easy, environmental friendly crafts that make good gifts, trays, and storage containers. You can make them by folding any size paper into a variety of shapes. They are a useful, fun way to use up flyers and discarded paper.

Part 1
Making a Rectangular Paper Box

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

1
For this method, rectangular paper works best. If you are making a gift or a party favor, use brightly colored and/or patterned paper. If you are simply practicing your paper folding skills, use some scrap paper instead.

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

2
If using patterned paper, make sure the pattern is on the outside. Unfold the paper again.[1] Make sure each fold is creased well. You can crease the folds with your fingernail, a coin, or some other small, hard object. If you're using cardstock or another kind of thick paper, you can use something called a "scoring tool." This can be a very dull knife, an empty ballpoint pen, a bone folder, or an embossing tool.[2][3]

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

3
Take the edge and line it with the center crease. Once again, the pattern should be on the outside. Unfold the paper. It should now be in quarters sectioned widthwise.

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

4
The pattern should be on the outside. Unfold the paper once more. It should now be in eight equal sections.

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

5
You are doing the same thing with this new lengthwise center crease as you did in Step 3. This will give the new side four sections. The paper should now have 16 sections in all. Do not unfold your paper this time. Keep in folded lengthwise.

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

6
Line the corners up with the nearest lengthwise crease. The folded corners should each form right triangles with their bases flush with a lengthwise crease. You should end up with an uneven octagon. A strip of paper should be between the center creased edges and the edge of the newly folded corner, creating a flap.

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

7
This opens the center of the paper so you can see the center crease inside the box. This flap will be seen from outside the box. If you are making a gift or decorative box, you might consider using two-sided patterned paper for additional ornamentation.

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

8
You can grip them by the creases in the middle. You should now have a complete box. You may have to re-crease some of the folds to make your box stand more securely.

Making a Rectangular Paper Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

9
Use some scotch tape on the corners if you would like them to sit flat. Decorate the bed of the box with markers or pens if you want to. If you're using it to hold a gift, write a surprise message to your giftee that will be covered by the item.

Part 2
Making an Alternate Rectangular Box

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

1
Starting with a rectangular sheet works best. As above, the paper you pick will depend on the box's purpose. If this is a gift or a decorative item, use patterned or brightly colored paper. If it's just for practice, use scrap paper.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

2
If using patterned paper, make sure the pattern is on the inside. This is in contrast to Method 1, so be sure to pay attention. Unfold the paper.[4]

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

3
Make sure the pattern is on the inside. Take the outer edges and fold to the center crease. Unfold the two creases you just made. The paper should now have four vertical sections. At this point, the paper is still half folded, so you should only see two of them and no pattern.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

4
The paper should now have flaps, with the pattern of the paper visible. Each flap should be three layers folded on top of one another in a Z pattern. Do not unfold the paper.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

5
When the paper is face down, you should see only the center crease and the two lengthwise edges. Fold the paper towards the middle crease so that it lines up with the two outer creases. Unfold partially so that the outer creases return to edges. There should be two lengthwise sections before unfolding and four lengthwise sections after.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

6
Line up the bottom outer edge with the crease. The new triangular section will have a flap in the middle of it.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

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This should create a new flap in the shape of a symmetrical trapezoid.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

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The bottom right corner will be on the other side of the third crease. The newly made section will be triangular with a point at the end. The top should have a flap.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

9
Lift the newly folded section and carefully slip into the flap on the section beneath it. The flap and the folded triangular corner will be visible.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

10
Take the triangular corner and fold underneath the flap. You may need to re-crease the folds. You should have a straight edge along the bottom. The newly folded flap section will be in the shape of a trapezoid. It will sit with its parallel sides flush with a second larger trapezoid.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

11
It may help to turn the paper 180 degrees before you begin. When finished, the two sides should mirror each other. The paper should now be in the shape of an oblong octagon.

Making an Alternate Rectangular Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

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This should complete the box by creating four standing sides. You may need to reinforce the crease to get the sides to stand better. As with Method 1, you may want to decorate the bed if it's for a special occasion.

Part 3
Making a Square Box

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

1
Think about the purpose of the box. If this is a gift or a decorative item, use patterned or colored paper. For this particular Method, square paper should be used. Origami paper is ideal for a gift box. Make sure your paper is completely even on each side. Either use square paper, or measure and cut the paper so each side is the same size.

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

2
If using patterned paper, make sure the pattern is on the inside. Turn the paper 90 degrees and repeat this step. You should now have four sections. [5]

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

3
You should start with the paper patterned side down, folding each corner to reveal the pattern side of the paper. The plain side should be covered up now. Your paper should now look like a smaller square made up of four identical triangles.

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

4
The newly folded sections should be folded down on top of the corner folds you just made in Step 3. The paper should now be a rectangle. When folded completely, you should see only two rectangular flaps that meet at the center.

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

5
The folds should be made over the ones created in Step 4. The shape will now be an even smaller square. The only visible pieces at this point should again be two rectangular flaps that meet at the center.

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

6
Rotate Stop unfolding once you have the square made up of triangles that you made in Step 3. Fold two parallel edges back towards the center on the already creased fold. There are two sets of edges to choose form, but they are identical. You are not making a new fold. Let them sit vertically, as these will be the beginnings of your box's sides.

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

7
This should partially unfold one shorter end of the rectangle. Don't use too much force to avoid tearing the paper. You may need to re-crease any edges that aren't crisp. You should now have three outwards-facing triangles, two of which with a central crease. The base of each triangle forms three sides of the square that will make up the next side of your box.

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

8
Pinch the central creases together to invert the triangles and push them down. Push inward on the creases and line the triangles against the central crease of the new side. The paper should start folding, lifting the new side up.[6]

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

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This last triangle's base will be the crease that will create the inner lower edge of this side. After folding in, the last triangle should now be in the bed of the box, creating a square with three other identical triangles.

Making a Square Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

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All four triangles should fit perfectly into the bottom of the box. Your box's bed will look like the square made up of four triangles in Step 3. If you want the triangles to stay perfectly flat, you may need to tape them down.

Part 4
Making a Pillow Box

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

1
Unlike the previous boxes discussed, you will need to do some cutting and gluing. Don't let this intimidate you; pillow boxes are actually the easiest type of paper box to make. It's best to use cardstock or another type of thicker paper for these boxes. In addition to paper, you'll need scissors, a ruler, and glue.[7] You will also need a scoring tool if you use cardstock.[8]

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

2
Find a template you like online. You can pick a minimalist pattern or an elaborate one. You can even print out a blank template that you can decorate yourself. If you choose to decorate the paper, do so before you start folding. Decorating an already-folded box is both difficult and runs the risk of collapsing it. You can also print a blank template directly onto decorative paper.[9]

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

3
Using your scissors, carefully cut along the lines designated by the template. A standard pillow box template has two parallel straight sides and four curved sides. They look similar to a wide hour glass. Some may be more elaborate, but they still tend to keep a "pillow" shape.

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

4
For straight fold lines, line your ruler up next to the marked edges on the template to guide you. The curved fold lines will be trickier, since you'll need to freehand them. Gently run your scoring tool up and down the lines until an indent forms. Don't be so rough that you cut through the paper.[10]

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

5
If your template is meant to face outside (such as most decorative ones), flip your paper over first.[11] Fold inward to keep your design facing outward. Use your ruler again to guide you if you have trouble.

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

6
Fold the second straight line inward. The skinny flap will be what holds the box together. Flip the box back over and apply glue evenly on the tab.

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

7
Fold the box in half again, decorative sides facing out. Tuck the flap under the far edge of the box. Line up the flap so that its crease is now flush with the far edge. Place your box in a heavy book while the glue dries to seal the edges.[12]

Making a Pillow Box on How to Make an Easy Paper Box

8
Once the glue has dried, gently fold the round scored lines down towards the center of the box with your fingers. They should now form two parallel sides each shaped like a pointed oval.[13] Because of their concave shape, the edges should hold together without any additional glue. If you used thin paper, though, glue may be necessary.