Introduction: Giant Cardboard LEGO Blocks

About: Eric J. Wilhelm is the founder of Instructables. He has a Ph.D. from MIT in Mechanical Engineering. Eric believes in making technology accessible through understanding, and strives to inspire others to learn …

For our daughter's 5th birthday, we held a LEGO-themed party. A highlight of the party was the huge pile of 75 giant LEGOs. The giant LEGOs were made by painting cardboard moving boxes in the classic primary LEGO colors. They kept a dozen five-year-olds (and plenty of excited parents) occupied for a couple of hours. Building with the blocks was great, but, of course, knocking them down was even more fun.

Since DUPLO is twice the size of regular LEGO, QUATRO four times, and these blocks are about ten times that size, we've decided to call them DECCO. Just moved, and looking to reuse your boxes? Make DECCO!

Step 1: Supplies

Our supplies included:

  • 75 12'' x 12'' x 16'' boxes
  • paint matched to LEGO colors blue, green, red, and yellow
  • rollers and trays
  • masking and protective materials
  • tape

Step 2: Paint Boxes

We painted the boxes with a latex-base interior flat combination paint and primer that are intended to cover a wall in a single coat. Blue, red, and green required an extra spot-coat over the logos on the boxes; yellow required two coats over the entire box, plus an extra (third!) spot-coat over the box logs. (For this reason, we painted 15 yellow boxes and 20 of each other color.)

We put the paint on a bit thick, which slightly warped the boxes as they dried, but the warping cleared up when we assembled the boxes. Make sure you have a ton of space for the boxes to dry, or build a rack to keep them from falling over and sticking to each other or picking up floor grit.

Step 3: Assemble Boxes

Once dry, we assembled the boxes and taped them shut with clear packing tape. Get one of those nice packing tape roller/cutters to make this go fast. If you're super-fancy, this could be done with color-matched duct tape.

Step 4: Build Tunnels

Build Lego tunnels and pretend you're in a Lego world! Amaze your children! Sneak up on them from behind a wall of boxes and growl loudly!

Step 5: Build Towers!

Build towers, both stable and unstable.

Step 6: ... and Knock Them Down

Have everyone yell SMASH!!!

Step 7: But Watch Out for Accidents

Step 8: Build a Wall for a Photo Backdrop

Take pictures of guests in costume quickly because once the children start knocking stuff down, they cannot contain themselves and will immediately try to knock everything down.

Fortunately for clean-up and recycling, one of the party guests was planning a LEGO-themed Halloween display, so all of the blocks will make another appearance soon.

If you make your own DECCO, have a blast, and be sure to post pictures here!