Introduction: How to Make a Cardboard Coffee Table With Chairs

Picture of How to Make a Cardboard Coffee Table With Chairs

In this instructable I will show you how to make a cardboard coffee table with matching chairs

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Picture of Materials and Tools

The materials:
-cardboard (lots)
-white glue (Elmer's Glue-All multi purpose) (not school glue)
-industrial hot glue sticks (lots)
-weights (about 20 lbs)
-packing tape

-packing tape gun
-box cutter (razor blade)
-industrial hot glue gun
-sawzall (with blade matal and wood wood ones work best)
-marker (sharpie or Marks-a-lot)
-tape measure

Step 2: Design Your Chair

Picture of Design Your Chair

The way I designed my chair:
First, I laid down on a big piece of cardboard, then sat sideways on it, then I had a friend outline my back with a marker, (start from your neck and follow your back all the way down to your ankles). The picture below is the design I came up with; it follows my back and it is quite comfortable.

Step 3: Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 1

Picture of Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 1

Take your pattern that you cut out from step two and cut about 48 of the same shape. Then glue them in stacks of six. To glue them use your white elmer's glue put a lot of glue inbetween each layer of cardboard them put some weight on top and wait a full 24 hours

Step 4: Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 2

Picture of Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 2

measure the perimeter

Step 5: Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 3

Picture of Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 3

now take the measurement of from step four and measure it out on a piece of cardboard I use some cardboard with a white finish for style.

Step 6: Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 4

Picture of Cut the Cardboard for the Chair: Part 4

This is the last step to cut the cardboard in, what you need to cut are spacers. The spacers are blocks of cardboard an inch or two thick. To achieve the the thickness repeat the procedure form step three: To glue them use your white elmer's glue put a lot of glue inbetween each layer of cardboard them put some weight on top and wait a full 24 hours.

Step 7: Put All the Pieces Together Without Glue

Picture of Put All the Pieces Together Without Glue

Step 8: Now Put All the Pieces Together With Glue

Picture of Now Put All the Pieces Together With Glue

Do the same thing in step 7 but glue them together with the elmer's glue instead of just setting them on top of eachother.

Step 9: Now Put the Covers on the Glued Chairs

Picture of Now Put the Covers on the Glued Chairs

To glue the covers on you need the:
hot glue gun
and the piece of cardboard we cut from step 5

Step 10: Cut the Cardboard for the Tables: Part 1

Picture of Cut the Cardboard for the Tables: Part 1

This the first step to make the table what you need is:
6 pieces of 19" x 19" solid pieces of cardboard
1 40" x 54" piece of cardboard this can be many pieces of little cardboard

Step 11: Put the Table Together

Picture of Put the Table Together

You will need the parts we cut out in step 10 to do this:
6 pieces of 19" x 19" cardboard
40" x 54" piece of cardboard

Step 12: You Are Done

Picture of You Are Done

This is not a step simply photos of the finished table with the chairs


CrystalB01 (author)2014-06-12

I love cardboard you and literally make a house with it!

golddigger1559 (author)2009-09-17

it would seem that your second attempt went better

btw where can i get hex board? or really thick cardbord???????????

m3harri (author)golddigger15592014-03-29

In the dumpster behind a furnature store

i got my cardboard from a box that my dad had left over he was not useing, the comany that supplies the boxes is called reliapak there web page that has the box info on it is here (copy and paste it into your web browser)----------------------------> i think they cost around 70 $ and the boxes are customizable with the thicknes and stuff. I hpoed this help if it did good and if it did not just post an other comment with what you need and i will be glad to help :)

REA (author)ppatches242009-10-01

cant we just get 500 large boxes from UPS for free?

ppatches24 (author)REA2009-11-08

ya if u want to glue them together

ya it did

lexiia7 (author)2009-08-08

Can you actually sit on the chairs without them breaking????

0000hawk (author)lexiia72012-09-30

Fill them with concreate. Make sure to put blocks of hardwood or lightweight but strong metal pieces. Should be steady enough.

ppatches24 (author)lexiia72009-09-09

ya you can i am going to post a vid of that soon

chibiturtleboi (author)lexiia72009-09-07

Most people don't think to highly of the strength of cardboard, but if you build them right, they can be pretty strong! :D

ppatches24 (author)lexiia72009-08-08

yes the chair are very very strong i jumped up and down ont hem to make sure yup these chairs are strong :)

Eddward AKA Double D (author)2012-07-15

mother and father would be very pleased with this!

mischeya (author)2012-03-13

If you use an acrylic sealer (brushed or sprayed) on the coffee table then it will be waterproof, so you won't have to worry about spills. I'd put it on the top and side surfaces. But, (as a separate step) I'd also seal also along the bottom edge, and up a few inches on the inside. That way if a drink spills to the floor, the cardboard won't start soaking it up. It might be worth it to seal the chairs, too.

Chocomarshfrog (author)2009-09-01

I always thought my 3rd grade teacher was wrong when she said little dots.

my teacher (9th grade) got out colorful paper and glue the other day so i went home sick. why do they do assignments that involve no brain work whatsoever just to make stupid people feel better about themselves? if he tries it again i will "accidentally" glue his ear to the floor.

ohhh yaa i had to read that a couple times haha that made my day lol lol

nbagf (author)2011-07-14

just leave it standing up and you have some nice cardboard shelves! lol

ArtsyFartsyGirl (author)2011-06-25

The seamstress in me would not let me get away with not covering them, probably with SUEDE, since the rest was so inexpensive!!!!!!!

Nice that would be super classy hahahaif you ever do which I hope you do make sure to post a picture of it please :P

MachGaoGamon (author)2011-04-18

One thing is missing.......collapsable cup holder

chakra (author)2011-03-28

i made this twin-seater almost a year ago. amongst the pessimistic comments from parents and friends making fun of it as a paper box crumbling under their weight, it has stood the test of time. (AND many overweight relatives too!! :-D )
thanks for the inspiration!! :-)

demonsonic1 (author)2011-02-09

Must now go make chair! Can not.... form.... coherent statements!! Too... much included....AWESOME!!

ppatches24 (author)demonsonic12011-02-13

hahaha lol thank you they are really quite EZ to make to

testingtosee (author)2010-07-27


ppatches24 (author)2009-11-08

That is so sweet happy to help send me pictures if you do it would be soo coool to see :)))

sadiecoons (author)2009-11-08

That is SSSSOOOO COOL! My twin brother loves to make stuff out of cardboard, so we will probably have new stuff for our den. THANKS!

ppatches24 (author)2009-09-01

oh ya and evey body do not for get to vote :)

spayz (author)2009-08-21

i love this idea as soon as i improve it with my latest ideas i will let u know

ppatches24 (author)spayz2009-08-27

ok cool

socca_grl101 (author)2009-08-02

it is so cool! it even looks really good.

ppatches24 (author)socca_grl1012009-08-02

Thank you :)

socca_grl101 (author)ppatches242009-08-26

no prob

bacon lover (author)2009-08-11

how long did it take you to make the chairs

ppatches24 (author)bacon lover2009-08-11

it took me 1 1/2 weeks but the only reason it did was that i did this at my dads shop because it is bigger than my house. So i had to drive back and forth geting materials i would a lways leave somthing at my house. But if you did this in one loaction it would probley take 2 to 3 days because you have to wait for the glue to dry.

bacon lover (author)ppatches242009-08-13

ok thanks and about haw much cardbord do you need

ppatches24 (author)bacon lover2009-08-17

it took a lot but the more you have is better :)

bacon lover (author)ppatches242009-08-24


eat.eggs.for.lunch (author)2009-08-15

it would be nice if you had actual photos of you sitting / jumping on them... :) great job by the way... we did this experiment in college too

ya i will post them soon i am on vacation they will be posted aug 30 and vids of me jumping hahah

ronmaggi (author)2009-08-11

A trick is to use a piece of string. Lay it along the perimeter, then measure the string.

ppatches24 (author)ronmaggi2009-08-11

that is a really good idea that would have been very helpful

chaoszerom (author)2009-08-03

It looks like you have a confortable set of chairs and a table there, and I cannot deny that it is a strudy design that will hold up to what a set like that needs to. Personally, I don't like the looks of it, but to each their own. Good job.

Spycrab (author)2009-08-02

probably no table, but there's a very good chance a get started on a chair :-)

ppatches24 (author)Spycrab2009-08-02

cool go for it : P

mbudde (author)2009-08-01

Cool. I'm making one of these tomorrow. But in step 11, don't you mean the parts from step ten? That confused me a little bit. But this is sweet!

ppatches24 (author)mbudde2009-08-02

Thank you, you were right i made this instructable at like 10 at night i was so tired i will change it thank you again

flataffect (author)2009-08-01

Don't forget to use a coaster! :) Looks good. I wish I'd had these ideas back when I started college.

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