Five Ways to Use Cardboard Boxes for a Halloween Costume

Halloween is around the corner, and if you haven’t started on your costume yet, you don’t have to worry. You still have over a week and a whole weekend to piece your costume together. While you could head to a Halloween shop, sorting through the mess of packaged costumes left might not be worth it. You’ll have more fun building something, and you’ll get more awesome points for going the DIY route. And you can get start with items you have around your home, including cardboard boxes. Big boxes leftover from appliances are ideal (most of us hang onto those for a little while), but you can break down and use smaller boxes too. Here are five suggestions for Halloween costumes you can make from cardboard boxes:

cardboard dinosaur costume

Cardboard dinosaur – Transform your kid or yourself into a ferocious beast by using three cardboard boxes and some scraps to form a dinosaur. This is an easier alternative to sewing a dinosaur bodysuit and less expensive than buying a pre-packaged costume. Use hot glue to keep the cardboard body together and spray paint the dinosaur whatever color you want. You can make the simple design fancier with sounds and lights. Hello, Wonderful has a helpful tutorial.

Become furniture – Look around your home. See all the things shaped like squares and rectangles? You can dress like them. Turn cardboard boxes into: a refrigerator, a stove, a dishwasher, a washer or dryer, a filing cabinet, a television, or a bookshelf. You could be a whole entertainment center and use an iPad as the television in the middle. You can decorate the cardboard with paint, markers, or attach printed images with Mod Podge.

downton abbey costume

Cardboard castle – With patience and a sharp craft knife (and plenty of refill blades) you can turn a large sheet of cardboard into a wearable castle. Rob Cockerham recently used foam board to make a wearable version of Highclere Castle of Downton Abbey, and you could take a similar approach with cardboard. You could become Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, Hogwarts, or any majestic building of your choosing.


Cardboard Minion – Use cardboard to turn yourself into a Minion from Despicable Me. Instructables user tblood3846 crafted one that ended up being 8.5 feet tall, but you can obviously scale it down. He used PVC pipe handles to hold the costume up and control it and constructed the head and body from strips of cardboard. Another Instructables user, yihungkuo, inspired him with this tutorial.

Iron Man armor – Cardboard is a perfectly suitable material to use to make armor. Kai-Xiang Xhong built a wearable Iron Man suit out of small and precisely measured pieces of cardboard. The downside is this project took him a year, but you can assemble a very basic suit of armor if you devote your weekend to cutting and painting. If Iron Man isn’t your thing, you can also make Transformers armor.

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