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Make "Baskets" Out of Cardboard Boxes


Necessity is the mother of invention, as my mom used to say. I couldn't find the right size baskets to fit on a couple of shelves in my daughter's room, so I covered a wine box and a shoe(boot)box with 4 ply jute twine.
Here's the project all finished.
Here's the project all finished.
I found a wine box that was the perfect size (width and depth) and cut down the top
I found a wine box that was the perfect size (width and depth) and cut down the top
I wrapped & hot glued some jute string around a shoe box for the top box and the wine box is on the bottom.
I wrapped & hot glued some jute string around a shoe box for the top box and the wine box is on the bottom.
I made some liners from a drop cloth to line the cardboard boxes to complete the look.
I made some liners from a drop cloth to line the cardboard boxes to complete the look.
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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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Have a question about this project?

12 questions
  • Ruth Swisher
    on Dec 29, 2015

    what is that on the inside of the box

    • Cmackay1
      on Dec 29, 2015

      It says she made a liner from drop cloth to line the inside.

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Dec 30, 2015

      @Ruth Swisher CMackay1 is correct...It's a dropcloth liner.

    • Cla3148327
      on Dec 31, 2015

      What is a dropcloth?

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Jan 1, 2016

      @Clarestoloff , a canvas dropcloth is something you put on the floor when you paint. http://www.lowes.com/pd_631592-962-K-CD3700-PRO___?productId=50286209&pl=1&Ntt=canvas+drop+cloth

    • Barbara Tizard
      on Mar 14, 2016

      In England we call them dust sheets.

    • Abbie Ramsey Byrom
      on Mar 23, 2016

      I once thought about using a drop cloth to make a slip cover for summer times for our sofa, but was thinking it might be too heavy of a fabric to sew w/out a heavy duty sewing machine. The price is good for such a large piece of fabric, & it would be tough & rugged enough to be washed repeatedly. It could also be dyed to a different color than white. Tye-dyed stuff was very hip back in the day of the cool people known as the Hippies, so very groovy, Man, lol! What about fabric paints as another idea for decorating the plain white denim fabric? Brainstorming here, that's all for now. 😎

    • Jenni
      on Apr 1, 2016

      I would lightly paint the inside using an acrylic paint and brush. I also liked the idea of using contact paper.

    • LeiLani
      on Apr 6, 2016

      I've just completed a cardboard/basket with a liner made from an old pillowcase. Just cut it off a few inches longer than the box - resew along the cut and when you fold over the already hemmed end you have a finished liner - of course this only works for a basket/box that fits the pillow case - but hey - mine was just perfect.

    • Jennifer Cork
      on Apr 7, 2016

      i like the pillow case idea but I can not wrap my head around how to make that happen.

    • Barbara McCarthy
      on Apr 25, 2016

      What about using wallpapers or scrapbook paper for the lining

    • Barbara McCarthy
      on Apr 25, 2016

      What about using wallpapers or scrapbook paper for the lining

    • Mai2201198
      on May 12, 2016

      Wherever something works for you but this one is perfect and more professional looking, don't you agree?

    • Barbara
      on Jul 27, 2016

      I have not done this yet, but I would try an old tee shirt as a liner depending on the size of the box. You could use all sizes from infant to men's extra large. I would turn tee shirt inside out, taking it by the hem, placing neck of tee shirt in the box and stretching the bottom of the tee shirt over the edges of the box and folding down as shown in original photo. If you have excess shirt around the box simply scrunch it so it gathers or scheers. The inside of box will have an arm hole on either side and a neck hole at the bottom. If your not choosy about how the inside is finished you should be able to tuck the sleeves inside so they aren't hanging in the box.. You could remove sleeves and stitch holes..and neck closed. You might be able to cut off the top of shirt under the arms and sew it closed. You could tuck in sleeves and take a piece of cardboard that would fit into the bottom of the box and cover it with contact paper, wallpaper or even cloth covering the neck opening. Just a thought for those who have the vision. Tee shirt material stretches so should work.

  • Karen Stark
    on Dec 29, 2015

    How was the lining done?

  • Sandy
    on Jan 3, 2016

    I absolutely love this idea, I am going to try it, do you think spray craft glue would hold the twine? I have a hot glue gun, but that always makes such a mess.

    • Natalie
      on Feb 17, 2016

      The spray kind of glue is likely to create a layer too sheer to hold thick twine, but maybe if you use knitting yarn instead, it will hold that. Still, regular liquid craft glue would probably be better. The problem is cardboard really absorbs glue, unless it has a glossy finish, that's why a hot glue gun works better. If you use some other kind of glue, you have to apply plenty, and it's messy anyway.

    • Liz
      on Mar 16, 2016

      The heavier, thicker glue they call "Tacky Glue" will hold better than regular glue and the twine won't slip. I read a tip about when using hot glue, press the twine in place using a plastic spatula so your won't burn your fingers. Also, make a tiny, narrow bead of glue rather than globbing a bunch on.

    • Abbie Ramsey Byrom
      on Mar 23, 2016

      I love this idea, & have been using boxes for some storage for decades. I like the idea of using twine or yarn, or decorating the boxes to make them look like expensive storage boxes in stores. I'm all about finding inexpensive storage, except when the area of storage is subject to humidity or other types of climate that might cause molds or mildew to grow. There are a few storage bins on the market that are waterproof, with an extra seal around the closure which seems like it would prevent the growing of mold or mildew inside them. These are a bit pricey, but might be worth the extra money if you have expensive items or senti- mental items which can't be replaced. I found mine at the super big store in our suburban neighborhood, for around the $15.00 range for clear bins, & bought 6 to get started with storage items for the garage. I am believing they'll be worth the splurge! 😎

    • Ann
      on May 12, 2016

      Goop is a thicker glue that's in a tube and will hold the twine better than other, thinner glues that are out there. You can spray the inside and outside of the box, prior to adding the lining, with an epoxy or polyurethane finish to make it less subject to retaining moisture and possible molding. Maybe lining it with burlap in lieu of a light material would also help it retain a nicer, cleaner appearance. Just a thought.

    • Pat
      on Jun 28, 2016

      When I started using rope and twine to cover items, I used good old Elmer's glue. I made a cute set of canisters out of coffee cans, since they come in so many different sizes. Also used the Elmer's to coat them.

  • DoeZ
    on Apr 16, 2016

    Did you line the entire box before you did the twine part or twined first and then lined it? Thanks so much for sharing this I have so many boxes you have no idea...my hubby yells at me to get rid of them and I just can't let them go. Now I'll have an excuse not too lol :)

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Apr 18, 2016

      No, the box is still uncovered cardboard.

    • Pat Hayes
      on Apr 23, 2016

      It looks as if the inside of the box is lined. I believe that is what the previous question was about...if you did the lining first on the inside or the twine on the outside.

    • Kathie Elia
      on May 15, 2016

      I think the outside of the box is completely covered with twine/rope and that there is a removable liner that comes over that. hope that makes sense,

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on May 17, 2016

      The liner is separate and was sewn after the twine was glued on.

  • Chandra
    on May 12, 2016

    What kind of rope or wove is this? where can one go about getting this? TIA

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on May 17, 2016

      @chandra, Go to the link above. It gives all the details.

    • Rhonda S
      on Jul 23, 2016

      She said in the post "jute string" but my guess is you could use many different types of cord or rope. It might even be fun to use different colors like white cotton cord with jute to create stripes.

    • Maria
      on Sep 3, 2016

      ribbon would also be a great idea! Now I no what to do with boxes. thanks

    • Deb Harrison
      on Sep 13, 2016

      Great idea, and beautiful storage! I bet my cats would love these with a pillow inside! They love boxes and and cat beds are expensive!

    • Nico
      on Nov 15, 2016

      Hey also can use old bamboo blinds or fencing the thin kind .. it's inexpensive and cut the sheets of it and then use some material for the boarder ! Omg this rocks thanks ! I'm disabled and I make zero money and these are so cute and I have tons of amazon boxes ! The box milk bones came in would Be perfect ! The amazon box not the milkbones ? Well maybe hehe thank you !

    • Nico
      on Nov 15, 2016

      U could also use fabric too ... and glue it to the boxes ... or contact Paper ! But I love these !

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Nov 18, 2016

      Great idea Nico!

    • Connie Chappell
      on Dec 25, 2016

      You can find larger Jute For big things like the Box and to wrap Big Planter Pots for Decoration's outside in.. Hardware Store's.. And you can get them in BIG SPOOLS!! Hope this helps!! Connie Chappell Connie Chappell Valley Springs, CA·answered Just now·

    • Janet
      on Jan 3, 2017

      Is the jewelry board above covered cork or 1/4" plywood? How have you hung on wall-two sawtooth hangers?

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Jan 3, 2017

      @teech2pla, you can either use cardboard or cork on plywood. They are hung on the wall using eyehooks and wire screwed into the back.

  • Martha Carter
    on Aug 31, 2016

    what kind of rope

    • Veronica Gmerek
      on Sep 5, 2016

      She mentioned jute...you can find it in a home improvement store...craft store....Walmart etc.

    • Connie Chappell
      on Dec 25, 2016

      You can find larger Jute For big things like the Box and to wrap Big Planter Pots for Decoration's outside in.. Hardware Store's.. And you can get them in BIG SPOOLS!! Hope this helps!!

    • Nancy
      on Jan 28, 2017

      I just did a quick calculation for a 15x12x10.5 banker box. 54 inch circumference. With 4 ply jute, 10 rows equals 2.25 inches. 10.5 inch height requires about 47 rows, 211.5 ft. of rope. Walmart sells 135 ft. 4 ply roll for $10.68. Rope expense, about $17. Use the extra jute to repair your cat scratch tower!

    • Tinalyn
      on Mar 7, 2017

      Great job I love the look of baskets for storage. It seems to go with any type of decor and of course you could use different material for the inside. 👏🏼

  • Lois
    on Sep 8, 2016

    Please give us instructions of how to make the liners.

  • Lyn12415918
    on Jan 21, 2017

    What is the cost to cover a Xerox box with jute string?

  • MeganS
    on Mar 16, 2017

    Did you put a line of hot glue before applying each row of jute, or did you only hit glue the ends and just use tension to hold it in place ?

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Mar 22, 2017

      Yes, every row. It takes a long time! Use a popsicle stick so you don't burn your hands on the hot glue.

    • Ana16579420
      on Jun 3, 2017

      You are very creative. What a great idea. You did a wonderful job. They look great!
    • Susan Earnheart Terrell
      on Jun 4, 2017

      When working with hot glue always have a cup of ice water handy. You will be glad you did.
    • Clair
      on Nov 26, 2017

      I thought it was very clever of you to use a dropcloth.
      I would’ve gone to a fabric store, paid a lot more for muslin fabric!
      I use shoeboxes, baskets, plastic totes, everything in my craft room.
      But the boxes are way better looking the way you did it.
  • Melissa
    on Mar 18, 2017

    What is the cloth material that you used?

    • Denise Glynn
      on Mar 19, 2017

      She said ....Drop cloth

    • Sheryls.aerials
      on Jun 8, 2017

      I missed it too and appreciated your question. I had the same one. Thanks for posting!
    • A.h10722590
      on Jul 14, 2017

      I also read the article and the question was what kind of fabric was used. There is no fabric called drop cloth. The fabric appears to be denim, heavy cotton or duck cloth. A drop cloth can be any cloth you use to protect floors or furniture while painting or sanding something. It could be any fabric including a piece of plastic.
    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Aug 2, 2017

      I made the liner out of a canvas drop cloth from Lowes Home Improvement. I'm not sure what kind of fabric that would be, other than cotton. Sorry for the confusion.
    • Carol Jackson
      on Jan 22, 2019

      Reply to a.h10722590 the term drop cloth is universal to all diyers. Even a simple Google of the word would give you def and images. Diy Design Fanatic no need for appology , just a newbie I guess. Good use of cardboard by the way.

    • Betty Anne Bayer
      on Feb 15, 2019

      I've made these, & I used discarded curtains I had hanging around. Easy to make, customize your size & look

  • Jeney
    on Apr 23, 2018

    what did you use for the inside and how did you place it?

  • Jennie P. Ramos
    on Nov 28, 2018

    Can I use a twin-size pillow case for the cloth cover?

    • Diy Design Fanatic
      on Nov 28, 2018

      It depends on the size of the box you use. Find a box that fits your pillow case first.

    • Jennie P. Ramos
      on Nov 29, 2018

      Thanks. I purchased a twin-size pillow case and cut it in half to fit the box I was using. And was able to cover 2-boxes. And as you can see the final product below

    • Claire
      on Dec 7, 2018

      Cute! Nice job! I'm inspired by you both!

Join the conversation

2 of 262 comments
  • Lisa
    on Nov 18, 2017

    Never thought of this one one. Great idea and one I really needed right now. Thank you, extremely helpful
  • Suzy Googoo
    on Jan 20, 2019

    It is all so useful. The twine boxes make it look very upscale and practical. I made 6 huge fabric boxes from fabric dinner napkins I bought and never used. I can tell you that I use them everyday to store my craft supplies in a wood wall unit I got for free on Craigslist. It was a great solution for making things organized and easy to grab. My next boxes will be twine for the texture it adds. That jewelry wall is a great idea. But I gotta tell you; I would have made a picture out of that wine box. I have found that Naked Juice boxes were incredibly sturdy and have stood the test of time. We used to drink a lot of that and I had all these boxes. I find that using thicker cardboard boxes worked best and have stood the test of time after 5 years.

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