DIY Kids Cardboard House: Palm Springs Style

You got vacation on your mind? Or just a place outside of your home? Me too! Don’t worry. One of my favourite places to go is Palm Springs in California. The climate, colours, vegetation, architecture – I love it all. So I thought why not get a little of that feeling into our home by building Emma a tiny version, in form of a cardboard house!

Eco friendly, because you can use recycled moving/ cardboard boxes, and low cost! Infact, I bet most of you have moving boxes somewhere stored away, right?

So comes a very east to follow DIY for the pink cardboard house!

You need for this version:

  • 4 Large Cardboard Boxes (moving style boxes)
  • Tape
  • Scissor
  • Paint if desired

I have created some very simple illustrations of the cut out’s for each side of the house, that you can follow. The pink dashed lines/ fill colour indicated the cut-out area. 

Let’s start!

Step #1: Lay out the box

Lay the box unfolded on the floor and cut open one side so it’ll look something like this.The first image is of the boxes we used and second the illustration with it. Note that black dashed lines are the folding lines, if you wanted to make it into an actual box. 

Moving boxes in general have a quite a few floppy bits to make it possible to fold it into said box, so what I did first, was to strengthen each folding line with some tape.

Step #2: Side 1 of the House – Backside 

Now that we have laid out the box you can start cutting out the first side of the house. Let’s start with the backside. For this I drew a diagonal across 3/4 of the length.

Make sure to save the rest or left-over part of this box as you’ll need it later for the roof. 

Step #3: Side 2 of the House – Long Frontside

For the frontside we use the whole box. To start draw again the diagonal over 3/4 of the box (I used my first side as template) and cut it out – but keep it all connected to the ‘square’ left 1/4.

You can see my window and door placement and can already go ahead to cut them out now. I cut them out after the house was assembled, but either way will work. 

Step #4: Side 3 – Corner/ Tall Entrance

Now that that the low and long part of your house is ready you can move on to the front corner/ tall entrance of the house. I added another door just for fun and light!

You can see that I placed the 2nd door in the square of the bigger part of the 3/4 of the box – this is just so that I could use the already prepared folding lines of the box for the corners. 

Again cut the door in already, if you want.

Step #5: Connect The low sides and the front

Now we can basically move on to tape the whole house together! I used tape that is about 3 fingers wide and fairly strong. You can get it coloured which is quite fun, especially if you don’t plan on painting the house.

The yellow line below indicated the taping and the green lines indicate where corners fold. I used the already given folding lines for the fold – making it easier to work with the cardboard. 

Picture 1: low front side /w windows and door + tall entrance /w door

Picture 2: low backside + tall entrance

Picture 3: low backside + low frontside

Step #6: The roof

Here I used one box in it’s full length + the rest from the low backside (where I said don’t throw it). I just really made the box a bit more narrow (see pink area blow) and laid it on the top of our little structure and then taped if from the inside. 

Step #7: Add colour if you like & accessories

We decided to paint the house! Because who doesn’t love a pink house right? I also added a small mailbox, and some plants! Easy peasy! The paint itself made it a bit more woobly initially, consider you paint on paper, but it worked out better than I thought it would.

I do hope this was a simple ‘how-to’ and did not make it too complicated! ? It was definitely a very fun & enjoyable project and I kind of want to build one in plywood or mdf now! But for now, Emma and me had a blast and shall be playing with it until it falls apart on its seams!

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