Near Jollyplay in Boxland, on Boxcraft Road to Fun, There lies a children's village - a very happy one. Its buildings are all boxes - the hotel and the store, The school-house and the station, and many others more! The name of it is Boxville. Its villagers are toys, And those who build in Boxville are merry girls and boys. You, too, may go to Boxland to make a house for play -Look! Here, you'll see the guide-post! Before you lies the way. Take cardboard boxes with you - maybe, some paste or glue, A pencil, and a paint-box, - and take your scissors too. I'll tell you all about it. We'll start - the turning's here— It was a fairy told me about this village, dear!


Material Required to Make Boxcraft: cardboard boxes, paste, scissors, crayons or water-color paints; perhaps a ruler, and pencil will help.

Do you believe in fairies? I do. I know three of them, and they are quite as wonderful as Cinderella's fairy godmother. She could make a coach and pair out of nothing at all but a pumpkin and some mice, but the fairies that I know can do even better than that! They can make a whole toy shop full of toys from nothing at all but some cardboard boxes.

The fairies that I know are called Happy Thought, Nimblefingers, and Play. They have so much magic that they can transform even dull days and make them jolly ones. All three of them came to see me one very rainy day, and each of them sat upon a card-board box while they all told me in chorus about the fairy art of boxcraft.

"Have you ever noticed how much an ordinary shoe-box looks like a little building with a flat roof?" Happy Thought inquired.

"All you have to do to make it a house," Nimble-fingers put in, "is to cut doors and windows in its sides."

"And then, when you have made the house, you have all kinds of fun with it," laughed Play.

"Boxes will make chimneys for your house," Happy Thought pursued. "Boxes will make furni-ture—beds, tables, chairs, mantels, pianos, benches - everything!"

"You need only to cut the box rims to make them," Nimblefingers interrupted.

"And when they are made - oh, think of the things you can use them for!" chuckled Play.

"A whole village can be made - cottages, school, store, church, railway station, bridges, tunnels - everything," Happy Thought went on.

"And all that you need to do it will be a pair of scissors, a pencil, some paints, and maybe some paste. I'll show you how," Nimblefingers volunteered.

"When the village is made, all your toys can play in it! Haven't you some roly-poly tumble toys, and some penny dolls, and toy animals?" Play demanded. "I know you must have."

"And the village is not all that you can make from nothing at all but some cardboard boxes. You may make almost any kind of a toy: a theater for dolls, a merry-go-round, an Indian wigwam, and games, and games, and GAMES!"

So, the fairies, Happy Thought, Nimblefingers, and Play, told me how to make all these magic toys from nothing at all but cardboard boxes, and they asked me to tell the children about it, so that they might know how to change dull days into bright and happy ones when they had learned of the magic.

Cardboard boxes are to be found everywhere. They are in your home and in everybody's home. Butchers, bakers, candlestick makers, milliners, druggists, jewelers, stationers, grocers, drygoods firms, shoe stores, book stores, toy stores, all keep them. Everywhere, everywhere there are cardboard boxes - big boxes, little boxes, middling-sized boxes; wide boxes, narrow boxes, deep boxes, shallow boxes; round boxes, oblong boxes, square boxes! Boxes, boxes, BOXES everywhere! All you need to do is to ask for them.

People at home are throwing them away. The butchers, the bakers, the candlestick makers, the milliners, the druggists, the jewelers, the stationers, the grocers, and the dry goods firms, as well as all the others, are constantly sending boxes to your home. The shoe stores, and the book stores, and the toy stores, and ever so many others, are throwing boxes away just because nobody seems to realize what magic there lies in them for the children.

When Happy Thought, Nimblefingers, and Play first told me about boxcraft, I did not find any trouble in securing the kind of box that I needed for the toy-making. I found that the merchants were very glad to give me boxes when I asked for them. They smiled when I asked. They did not know that a toy circus tent could be made from a round hat-box. They did not know that a whole village might be erected out of six shoe-boxes!

Among the boxes given me were three very large ones. One was deep and wide. It came from the milliner's. It was not a bandbox, but a box used to pack hats away in. In it I kept all the boxes that came to me. The small ones I packed inside the large ones. It was a simple matter, after that, to find


Boxville Cottage is made from a shoe-box.


Boxville Cottage is furnished with boxcraft furniture.


Boxcraft Materials.


An unfinished Boxcraft Toy.

what I needed when I wished to make a table, or a chair, or a punch show, or a school-house.

Another box that was given me was wide and flat. Into it I put all pretty papers that came my way - lace paper, pinwheel paper, sheets of waxed sandwich paper and glacine book covers, crape paper, spools, cotton, pencils. Everything that could lie flat went into this wide, flat box, to be stored till needed. This box packed into the first box easily.

The third box was broad, and square, and deep. Into it I packed the playthings I had made after I had finished playing with them. It fitted into the side of the first box above the wide and flat one. All these could be put out of sight in my play-closet when night came and it was time to pick up.

These boxes I called my treasure boxes. I hope you will find three like them and keep your boxcraft materials as I kept mine, for Happy Thought, Nimblefingers, and Play told me about the plan, and I think it is a splendid one.

If you have some pretty samples of wall-paper, you can easily cover your treasure boxes with them. There might be some wall-paper like that in your play-room. If so, this would be the very thing.

Then, the boxes may be placed anywhere you choose in your room.

These treasure boxes are not meant to hold large toys. It is the little toys that you will like best to use in boxcraft play. The toy figures and the animals will pack into very small space. The corrugated cardboard for roofs, the green crape paper for grass, the pretty shells, pebbles, and artificial flowers for garden building, take but small space.

The tools for your boxcraft, scissors, and paste, and paint-box, may go into the large, deep treasure box too.

Here in this book you will find the toys that the fairies have shown me how to make. There are many, many more. You can try the magic craft of the fairies for yourself in your own way. If your boxes are not always exactly like mine, make them answer by adapting the general plan of the toy to the box which you have. Learn to make much out of little. That is the motto of boxcraft play. THAT is what Cinderella's fairy godmother did when she changed a pumpkin into a golden coach. That is what fairies always do! They find magic in little things - so suppose you try it tool

Sing a song of boxes and busy fingers too,

Some scissors, and a paint-box, and just a bit of glue!

Sing a song of playtime for happy girls and boys, A-snipping with their scissors, a-making boxcraft toys!

List of Materials which May Be Used in Boxcraft

Cardboard boxes. (To make buildings and toys.)

Corrugated cardboard. (To make roofs and fences.)

Plain cardboard. (To use in cutting side walls, roofs, wheels for carriages.)

Glacine paper book-covers. (To use in making window-glass for buildings.)

Colored pinwheel papers and tissue papers. (To use in decorating houses.)

Spools. (To make standards for trees and bushes in landscape building, to make flower-stands, cannon, stools, tables, legs for dolls' beds, men for playing boxcraft games.)

Round-headed paper-fasteners of brass. (To make door-knobs and door-latches for buildings. To fasten handles to baskets. To fasten wheels to vehicles.) Pencils. (To use for pillars for buildings. To use for making game-boards.)

Tools Used in Boxcraft Play

Just a pair of scissors, some paste, and a box of crayons or water-color paints.