Picture of Cardboard Faux Fireplace
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, especially now that my apartment has a fireplace!

All you need is a large cardboard box, a box cutter, scissors, tape, , hot glue, brown wrapping paper, and a Sharpie.
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Step 1: Tape up the corners of a large cardboard box.

Picture of Tape up the corners of a large cardboard box.
I used duct tape to secure the corners of a large cardboard box so that it would stand up on its flaps.

Step 2: Cut out a rectangle to leave space for the "fire."

Picture of Cut out a rectangle to leave space for the
Use a box cutter to cut out a rectangle from one side of the box. I found it easiest to do so on carpeted floor (it didn't hurt the carpet). To give you an idea of the proportions, my rectangle is seven inches out from the edges.

Step 3: Cut the box in half.

Picture of Cut the box in half.
Since the box is quite large, and I wanted my mantel to only stick out about a foot form the wall, I used the box cutter to cut the box in half, using the flaps as a guide.

Step 4: Make extensions to your box if necessary.

Picture of Make extensions to your box if necessary.
Depending on how big your box was to begin with, you may want to make it taller or wider to get it to a good fireplace size. On my box, I cut off the flaps on the half I didn't use and hot-glued them to the bottoms of my fireplace, overlapping by a couple inches. This brought the total height up to four feet. Since it was now so tall, I decided to widen it as well by cutting the horizontal piece in half and inserting another piece of cardboard. This insert was reinforced with more tape and another cardboard piece underneath.
baglady2017 months ago

This is cool, i am going to make one to surround my space heater mini fireplace, to make it look full size. Plenty of room to breath in there and i have fireproof base material to put heater on

chrissysno3 years ago
This is wonderful! It goes so well with your decor'. I would keep it up all year round. Thanks for a great instructable!
You need to paint it. Even if you were to go with a "natural" wood look, you'd need to paint it. Just what every apartment needs...for the fake fire, I'd go with Goldie's Bubbling Cauldron instructable.
Cation Designs (author)  javajunkie19763 years ago
I was going for a quick and easy holiday decoration for our apartment, not a real wood look. The drawing was enough for me, although if someone wanted the wood look they could certainly paint it. Thanks for pointing me toward the cauldron; for Christmas I like the lights, but I'll keep the cauldron in mind should I ever need such a thing.
No prob. I've used it before and the effect is quite nice especially in a low light setting.
Really Nice!!! :)
scoochmaroo3 years ago
Now I need a cardboard fire place.
Beautiful! Definitely intend to do this when I move!!!!!!
mikeasaurus3 years ago
The footings are a nice touch, I'll bet you could finish this with textured paint job and it would look almost authentic. Also, kitty seems to approve, that's always a good sign!