Updated at: 07-11-2022 - By: Helen Skeates

Making furniture from cardboard is a great activity to do with children, and if you know how to make a card board chair, you can create a quick, usable project that can be placed in a child’s bedroom.

By itself, cardboard can be quite fragile. It is only when the pieces are stacked upon one another that it can support a human being.

Making chairs out of recycled cardboard may be a fun family activity, as youngsters can use any cardboard scraps and boxes they have lying around. Moreover, they may make these chairs uniquely theirs by decorating them with paint, stickers, glitter, and other creative tools.

What are Cardboard Chairs?

In the 1970s and 1980s, Frank Gehry was known for designing and inventing cardboard seats. By laminating many layers of corrugated cardboard together, designers and middle-class families were given a low-cost, ecologically friendly alternative to high-end furniture. In recent decades, students in architectural design programs have been tasked with making fully functional adult-sized chairs from scratch using only a cardboard box and a utility knife. This uses a cheap and adaptable material to challenge students’ aesthetic, building, and technical sensibilities.

Later on, Gehry branched out from his initial side chair ideas to create massive cardboard recliners with ottomans. They have a more rustic appearance, with offset and stepped corrugations and a natural cardboard brown tone that makes them look like they may be mistaken for rattan. The huge chairs in this series weren’t designed to be used, but rather to be showcased in museums or galleries; this made them less functional, but also conceptually adventurous uses of cardboard.

Sweet And Easy DIY Toy Cardboard Chair For A Kids Room | Diy cardboard furniture, Cardboard chair, Diy cardboard

Many schools of architecture, engineering, and design now require their students, inspired by Gehry’s ideas, to construct their own chairs out of cardboard boxes. However, even inexperienced DIYers have found success in using corrugated cardboard to create one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture with which to furnish their homes. Cardboard’s low price, ease of recycling, durability, and creative potential make it a popular material among these hobbyists. Some of their cardboard seating is collapsible and lightweight, making it ideal for usage in public places like parks. Some can serve as a seat, table, or even a place to put things. It’s possible to locate no-cost blueprints for constructing your own cardboard home furnishings.

Cardboard Furniture Advantages: Benefits And Disadvantages

Why To Choose Card Board Furniture?

Reasons to go with cardboard furniture include:

  • It’s quick and simple to put together.
  • It’s simple to throw away.
  • Cardboard tables and chairs require little upkeep.
  • Simple to fix.
  • It doesn’t harm the environment in any way


One of the main benefits of cardboard furniture is that it can be easily packed and transported in the event that the client or user needs to relocate.

Cardboard storage cabinets, although not only being functional, also have an aesthetically pleasing design.


Here are some of the drawbacks that you may encounter when using cardboard for your furniture:

The cardboard furniture is weak and cannot support significant weight.

Customers need also take care to keep it dry because it is not waterproof, which is another major drawback.

Supplies Needed To Make Cardboard Chairs

Listed below are the materials you’ll need to complete your task:

  • Packaging material consisting of cardboard boxes and other cardboard scraps. A chair made from corrugated cardboard would be more durable.
  • Cutting tools, such as scissors or box cutters, to snip the cardboard into smaller bits.
  • A measuring device such as a ruler, yardstick, or tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Adhesives with a lot of stick, like PVA or hot glue, are good examples.
  • Use either brushes and acrylic paint or spray paint.
  • Stickers, glitter, and ribbons are just a few examples of the kinds of craft supplies used for adornment.
  • Clear coating (polyurethane)

Steps To Make Cardboard Chairs

Step #1. Make a sturdy frame

Apply glue along the inside surface of the flaps of a robust square cardboard box. Press each flap inside the box and glue it to the inside walls for reinforcement.

Turn the container over so the bottom can air out. After the glue has dried, you may flip the box over so the bottom is now the top.

Draw squares of the same size as the base of the box using a ruler and pencil. Cut out around six squares of cardboard to fit the dimensions of the chair using scissors or a box cutter.

Step #2. Assemble the chair

Affix the first square cut to the box bottom using glue. Five pieces of cardboard should be cut out and the process repeated four more times.

Glue each square cutout firmly to the bottom of the box, and then use a paper towel to remove any excess glue. Do not touch the box for at least two hours so it can dry.

To construct the chair’s back, put glue along the square’s bottom edge and press the square’s bottom edge onto the back. Don’t touch it for another two hours so it can dry.

Step #3. Decorate your chair

In other words, you should start decorating! When working on a project with children, this is always a highlight.

You can use tempera or acrylic paints to decorate the chair. Spray paint can also be used for a quicker finish.

Spray paint can be fun, but it’s important to have an adult there to make sure it’s used correctly and to keep you away from the harmful fumes. Drying time between coats of paint averages roughly two hours.

Coat the painted surface with a clear finish with the guidance of an adult. Stickers, glitter, and other art supplies can be used to give the chair a unique look.

RSID Cardboard Chair Project - YouTube

Tips To Make Your Cardboard Chair Better

Here are some more suggestions for reinforcing your cardboard chair so it will last longer and serve you better.

  • Corrugated cardboard is recommended for use due to its durability.
  • Adding more layers of cardboard will make your chair more robust.
  • Using creased cardboard can undermine the integrity of the chair and should be avoided.
  • Find out if your local recycling center has any free cardboard by calling them.
  • Packing tape, screws, and other fasteners can also be used for reinforcement. Incorporating these into your chair design might increase its durability.
  • Combine them with larger furniture by using more substantial cardboard boxes and cutouts.
  • When putting the chair together with hot glue, you need to move quickly so that the glue doesn’t dry.
  • Colored cardboard or spray paint can also be used to quickly give your cardboard chair some flair. A responsible adult should be present whenever spray paint is being used.
  • Add a pillow, cushion, or square of foam to the seat to make it more comfortable.
  • Wrap the chair in cloth to make it more visually interesting. It will complement your existing furniture more gracefully.
  • When you’re finished, you can test your cardboard chair by settling onto it. This way, you know the chair is safe and won’t tip over on you later.

Cardboard furniture has a wide range of applications. They are ideal as short-term solutions for kid’s rooms, student apartments, and rental houses.

The cardboard construction of some of these pieces of furniture doesn’t make them any less sturdy. Cardboard is a cheap and readily available material, so you can save money by constructing your own cardboard furniture. Create paper templates for cutting out and assembling parts to make more intricate creations.

10 Cardboard Furniture Designs

How to Make a Cardboard End Table

After purchasing some flat-packed furniture from IKEA, Adrian Candela had plenty of cardboard boxes lying around. Nit, which means “night” in Catalan, is the end product. It’s an end table crafted from cardboard sheets 2.5mm thick. Now you, too, may have your own; instructions are included.

Chairigami Creates Cardboard Furniture for the Urban Nomad

Chairigami uses strong three ply-corrugated board made of 70% recycled cardboard and 30% FSC-certified virgin fiber to produce temporary, yet sturdy, cardboard furniture. In addition to being completely free of glue, staples, and resin, everything is handcrafted in their New Haven, CT shop. You may get furniture like chairs, loveseats, desks, and shelves made entirely out of cardboard on their website. Custom orders are welcome as well.

Cardboard Shoe Rack You Can DIY

Ananda, of the organization site A Piece of Rainbow, came up with this brilliant and really low-cost cardboard shoe rack DIY while working on her own closet. The depth of the rack is what makes this a brilliant design. It’s a smarter way to utilize the square footage of her regular closet. As an alternative to storing pairs of shoes next to one another, you can store multiple pairs of shoes in a single cubby by stacking them behind one another. Here is where you may see the instructional video.

Retro Futuristic Side Table by Cardboard Safari

If you’re familiar with Urban Outfitters, you might recognize the name Cardboard Safari. You may personalize the cardboard deer busts and rocket table shown below, both of which are produced by this company. Using recycled cardboard, all of their items are created and manufactured locally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Price: $60.

How to Create Whimsical Cardboard Decor

You have some furniture, but no money for fancy extras to fill your temporary home. Whimsy Girl comes up with a way to liven up a dull dorm room or a compact bedroom. Two cardboard boxes, a permanent marker, and some creativity are all you need to get started making things.

You Can Buy or DIY This Beautiful and Compact Cardboard Chair

DIY furniture designs made from cardboard are sold on the website and blog of Aline Cardboard. Above you can see the Banana Chair, one of my favorite pieces of furniture designed by Aline. Protected and encased in Thai banana paper, it is a work of sculptural beauty. You can get one for yourself if you like it for $995. It’s too expensive for me, so if that’s the case for you, I recommend trying to figure it out on your own. A guide is provided below.

A Sleek Cardboard Pendant Lamp by Grayskunk

Grayskunk is a one-of-a-kind design firm that excels in the fields of architecture, graphics, laser cut furniture, and all things digital (according to their website.) The Cubular is a pendant light constructed from cardboard and hand-assembled by the designers to each customer’s specifications at their Salt Lake City, Utah workshop.

You Can Buy or DIY This Striking Cardboard Chair by MillstStudio

The impressive MillstStudio cardboard chair (created in Seville, Spain) can be purchased or constructed by the buyer (they offer worldwide shipping.) Typically employed in the construction of sandwich panels for furniture and other items, honeycomb alveolar cardboard is strong yet lightweight. The price tag for this handmade chair is close to $300. But if you do it yourself instead of buying it, you can save a ton of money. Price of the cardboard chair blueprints: $22.81 (USD.)

How To Make Poppy Cardboard Chair - YouTube

Smart Deco Makes Good-Looking Cardboard Furniture

The sturdy cardboard furniture by Smart Deco comes in two color options: natural and white. Each of their items is created in the USA and is recyclable in full. Also, each piece of furniture is protected with a watertight lid.

You Can Bring This DIY Computer Desk and Chair to the Beach

Getting some work done at the beach while relaxing this summer? You’ll need this foldable workstation and chair set. Here is the complete guide you’ve been looking for.


If you’re making furniture out of cardboard, choosing recycled cardboard is the most environmentally beneficial option. The skills you acquire in making a cardboard chair can be used to the development of other cardboard furniture.

They need not have a plain, uninteresting design. Enjoy your handmade goods while letting your creativity run free.