Ice cream, cheese, oatmeal, salt and other cylindrical boxes as well as mailing tubes may be made into attractive toys and other things. Ice cream and cheese cartons should be washed immediately after the contents have been removed so that they will be ready for use at any time.

Gift Boxes

Use scraps of colored paper and cut a circle the size of the top of an ice cream box. Fold circle three times and cut out shapes on each fold being sure these shapes fit together in the space. Open the circle and paste other colored scraps under the holes. For the sides cut a long strip of paper, the same color as used on the lid. On this strip cut an interesting edge which will make the border around the box. Suitable for all grades.

String Box

Decorate the box as for the gift box described above. Punch a hole in the center of the top for string to pass through. Suitable for all grades.

A gift box

A gift box showing how to cut the design; a string box and a cleaner box cover. A flower basket covered with decorated wrapping paper and another with paper fringe. All made from ice cream cartons.

Cleaner Can Cover

Use a quart size ice cream carton. Decorate sides, and top with enamel paint colored with chalk (see page 21). Water colors or cut paper may be used but should be shellaced for durability. Sew a large bead or button on the lid. Place can of cleaner inside the carton. Suitable for all grades.

Flower Baskets

Use a tall round box of any kind. Cover with decorated paper as shown on page 120. Sew on handle made of light weight cardboard or one braided or knotted (see page 104) from string which may be dyed. Place a glass or can of water inside to keep the flowers fresh. The carton may be covered with crepe or tissue paper fringe. Suitable for lower grades.

Hat Stand

Cover a small stick about twelve inches long with decorated paper, wall paper or colored paper. Nail this to the inside center of the bottom of an ice cream cartoon. Fill the box with sand, cut a small hole in the lid of the box and place on the box with the stick passing thru the hole. Cover the box and lid with paper like that on the stick. Use a second lid for the top of the stand. Nail it to the top of the stick, pad with paper and cover with paper like that used on the box at the bottom. Suitable for lower and middle grades.

A hat stand

A hat stand made from an ice cream carton and an additional lid and small stick. A lamp shade made from an oatmeal box and wrapping paper.

Lamp Shades

On a piece of wrapping paper as wide as the height of a large carton and as long as the circumference draw a design in silhouette (black against white). Trace the design to the carton and cut out with a paring knife and scissors the part that is light in the design. The box may be covered with dark paper before cutting or it may be painted with enamel or any dark paint when cut out. Make parch-mentized paper of heavy wrapping paper for behind the openings. Dissolve shaved crayon in cleaning fluid or turpentine and add an equal amount of salad or linseed oil. Rub this mixture into the paper with a rag. When dry glue the paper to the inside of the shade. The paper may be painted with water colors and then oiled with any oil. Water color must be applied very thick. Cut a hole in the bottom of the carton, which is the top of the shade, for the globe to fit into. Suitable for upper grades.


Use square boxes for the main part of the castle and round cartons and tubes of all kinds for the towers. Roofs for the towers may be made from a circle of lightweight cardboard cut as shown on page 126. Towers need not have roofs. Sew the boxes together to make castle as desired. When finished castle may be painted with calcimine or house paint and placed on a hill made of papier mache as described on page 26. Suitable for middle grades.

A castle

A castle made from cartons of all kinds. A doll chair and cradle made from round cartons.

Doll Chair

Cut out the top of an oatmeal box as shown on page 124. Cut a piece from the lid for the seat of the chair. Cover all with cloth or paper. Chair may be padded with cotton or rags before covering with cloth. Suitable for lower grades.

Doll Cradle

Cut oat meal box as shown on page 124. Canopy may be omitted if desired. Make slits for rockers and put in half circles of heavy cardboard. Paint with calcimine or house paint. Suitable for lower grades.

Toy Animals

1. Use an oatmeal or salt box for the body. Cut the back and front of the animal from cardboard and sew or glue to the body as shown on page 126. Paint with colored calcimine paint or white calcimine colored with chalk (see page 22). If the lid is removable the animal may serve as a box. Smaller animals may be made in the same way by using spools for the bodies.

Toys made from round cartons

Toys made from round cartons and boxes.

2. Use an oatmeal or salt box for the body. Cut the head and legs from heavy cardboard and slip in slits as shown on page 126. The tail may be made from rope or cardboard. Paint the animal as described above. Birds may be made in the same way. Suitable for lower grades.

Toy Engine

Use an oatmeal box for the body. Cut a hole in the top for the smoke stack which is a piece of mailing tube. Make the cowcatcher of thin cardboard and sew to front of engine. The front wheels are nailed to the ends of a small stick which is nailed to the bottom of the body. Sew a small box on the back of the engine for a cab. Fasten two wheels to the cab. Oil tanks for the train may be made similarly. Suitable for lower grades.

Dutch Windmill

Use a carton for the main part of the mill. Make the roof from three-fourths of a circle of light weight cardboard. The circle around the sides is made from light weight cardboard and the fan from heavy cardboard. Paint with calcimine or house paint. Suitable for lower grades.