How to Make a Cardboard Play Camper

Turn cardboard scraps into a fun play area for the kids.

Related To:
Cardboard Play Camper Beauty

Cardboard Play Camper Beauty

Let the kids camp out in the house in this darling play camper.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Take the kids camping without leaving your home. Transform spare carboard into a vintage camper that will provide hours of fun for little ones.

Materials

  • cardboard boxes
  • box cutter
  • hot glue
  • paint
  • hook and loop tape

Gather Materials

Gather large pieces of cardboard to make the body of the camper (Image A). Use smaller pieces of scrap cardboard to make the accessory pieces (Image B).

Cut It Out

Cut off the side flaps of a large piece of cardboard. Draw a large oval shape onto the remaining cardboard. Then, carefully cut around the oval shape with a box cutter and remove the excess.

Cardboard Play Camper Cutting Oval B

Cardboard Play Camper Cutting Oval B

Cut an large oval shape for the body of the play camper.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Draw a square on one end of the camper body. This will be the window. Then, draw a door shape in the middle of the camper. Cut out the window with a box cutter.

Cardboard Play Camper Cutting Windows

Cardboard Play Camper Cutting Windows

Cut out a window shape from the large oval.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Next, cut out the door, leaving the left side of it connected to the main body frame (Image A). Lift up the door and fold towards the left edge still attached to the body of the camper (Image B).

On the inside of the door, lay a bowl or place on the top, center of the door and trace (Image A). This will be the door's window. Use a box cutter to cut out the window in the door (Image B).

Trace a circle around a bowl onto some of the space cardboard to make the wheel of the camper. You will need three different circle sizes for the wheel. When you're finished tracing, cut the wheel out with a box cutter.

Cardboard Play Camper Cut Out Wheel

Cardboard Play Camper Cut Out Wheel

Cut out a wheel from the spare cardboard.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Draw a scalloped edge that will go on the bottom edge of the camper.

Cardboard Play Camper Cutting Out Wheel A

Cardboard Play Camper Cutting Out Wheel A

Cut out a wheel from the spare cardboard.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Use spare cardboard to cut out window accent pieces. These details will make all the difference in the end.

Cardboard Play Camper Cut our Window

Cardboard Play Camper Cut our Window

Use spare cardboard to cut out window accent pieces.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Use the body of the camper to trace the door frame and window onto another larger piece of cardboard. This will be the frame that the front of the camper will attach to later.

Cardboard Play Camper Cut out Windows A

Cardboard Play Camper Cut out Windows A

Cut out windows on the body of the play camper.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Paint + Glue

Paint the cardboard cutouts.

Cardboard Play Camper Paint

Cardboard Play Camper Paint

Paint the cardboard cut outs.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Use a hot glue gun to attach the cardboard pieces. Add a liberal amount of hot glue to the bottom edge of the camper and secure the blue scallop detail.

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces C

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces C

Glue down bottom blue scallop detail.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Add panes to the window of the camper. Glue the larger rectangle window frame to the outside of the window on the camper.

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces G

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces G

Attach window to camper.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Glue on the window box and don't forget the flowers.

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces I

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces I

Add paper flowers to window box.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Attach the extra door cutout to the door attached to the camper. Reinforce the "hinge" with a long piece of cardboard and glue.

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces H

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces H

Attach door to frame with velcro tape.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Attach the wheel base to the play camper.

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces K

Cardboard Play Camper Attaching Pieces K

Attach wheel to base of play camper.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Assembly

Add velcro tape to frame (Image A). Attach the front of the camper to the main frame of the camper (Image B) as well as the decorative pendant (Image C).

Accessorize

Little camp accessories like a lantern adds to the ambience.

Cardboard Play Camper Latern

Cardboard Play Camper Latern

Little camp accessories like a lantern adds to the ambiance.

Photo by: Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Andy Vinson of Loch & Key Productions

Your little campers will enjoy the fun of the great outdoors from the comfort of home.

Get more tips

Cardboard Play Camper 01:08

Build a fun and creative play camper for the kids with leftover cardboard.

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