Paper Gift Box




About: My name is Randy and I am a Community Manager in these here parts. In a previous life I had founded and run the Instructables Design Studio (RIP) @ Autodesk's Pier 9 Technology Center. I'm also the author ...

Lately I've taken to folding up paper to make stuff. This cube is one thing that I have stumbled across in my explorations of paper folding.

It's pretty structural as far as paper cubes go and can hold a fair amount of stuff (which would make it ideal as a small gift box).

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Step 1: Go Get Stuff.

You will need:

A ruler
A cutting board
An 11" x 17" piece of paper (or equivalent)
An Exacto knife
A pencil
An eraser

Step 2: Cut the Paper to Squares.

Cut your sheet of paper into two 6" x 6" squares.

Step 3: Draw Some Lines.

Trace the fold lines on your squares.

The fold lines should be 1 3/4" in from each border. This will leave a 2 1/2" square in the center.

Step 4: Fold.

Fold along the fold lines you have just traced. First fold the paper so that when you fold it you can see the line that you are folding upon. This will create straight creases.

Once done, you are going to want to fold the paper back in the opposite direction so that when you actually make the cube, the pencil lines will be on the inside.

At the end of both sets of folding, go back and erase the pencil lines as best you can.

Step 5: Fold in Corners.

Fold in corners so that they line up to the outside of the nearest fold lines in the paper (see picture).

Step 6: Start the Box.

Start the box by taking one of the folded corners and bending it forward in until the edges of the box meet and it forms a small loop. Once the edges are aligned properly, flatten the loop by creasing it (for a clearer explanation, see the comments on the images below).

Do this for every corner until you have half a cube.

Step 7: Begin the Box.

Take both halves and squeeze them into a box-like formation. Making sure the triangle creases line up flatly, slide one half of the box into the crease of the other. They should fit snuggly (see pictures).

Step 8: Shove It.

Shove your small gift carefully inside the half-finished box. Remember to continue holding the box together while you do this.

Step 9: Close It Up.

You can close your gift box using the same method by which you slid the bottom together. However, sliding the top in place is a tab bit trickier since you will have to bend one of the flaps a little so that it can neatly slide under the other. Be careful not to crease either of them.

Step 10: Decorate.

Decorate your gift box as you see fit.

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    20 Discussions


    9 years ago on Step 1

    I found this instructable utterly might want to redo it adding more steps and pictures for each move


    10 years ago on Introduction

    o.o O.o o.O YAY!!!! IT WORKS FIANLY WEEEE MAH BOX!!!! :DDD >:( it was confusin :D But awesome when it worked for meeee


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Good Instructable! I think i got the box in easier by "sliding it in" and making sure the triangle flaps were aligned in the same direction when putting it in


    12 years ago on Introduction

    OK, I'm plugged back into this planet now! At least I'm blonde, so I have an excuse!


    12 years ago on Introduction

    Hi, I am blonde, so it is totally possible that I could be stuck in "DUH" mode at the moment but, wouldn't the largest square possible out of something with a side of 11" be 5.5"? Dumby me started by cutting a larger poster board down to 17" X 11". From now on I will "View All Steps", then I would have simply cut two 6" square pieces! Who said blondes weren't bright? (Actually I did, but I am blonde, so I am allowed). Anyways, I am going to see if I can get through the rest of your instructions now without hurting myself. Thanks for the fun project.

    love em geeks

    12 years ago on Introduction

    loved this one! easy, fast and useful. finally, a little cool box to keep all those ear rings i haven't used in years and dont have the courage to throw out! thanx! :D (and for all you guys asking about the sticker:: come on, instructable ppl! make em yourselves!)


    12 years ago on Introduction

    Nice, but specifying an 11"x17" sheet of paper seems misleading, even though you qualify it with 'or equivalent'. Not too many people are going to have an 11"x17" sheet on hand. If you wanted to use just one sheet, more commonly available legal size (8.5"x14") paper would do. But 2 sheets of even more commonly available letter size (8.5"x11") paper would seem to fit the bill for most people. Have you tested these to see how big you can go (with say, standard 20 lb paper) before structural integrity starts to become a problem? And w.r.t. fold dimensions for different size boxes: does the 7x fold dimension to 10x inside square dimension used for your 2.5"x2.5" box (1.75" to 2.5") need to be retained, or is there some flexibility in the fold dimensions?

    2 replies

    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    I have not tested them for paper strength or size. I would imagine that if you were working with standard computer paper, you could scale it up to and 8.5" square and have no problem. You couldn't really go much larger than that if you are using standard printer paper, so why worry about it?

    Any which way, I did go ahead and make the largest one I could using paper I had lying around (18" x 24" 60lb drawing paper). It seems to work well enough so long as you don't put anything excessively heavy in it or on it. It is paper after all.

    The likelihood of having a larger and/or stronger sheet of paper than that lying around for most people is slim.

    As far as shape, I have folded these to be more of a perfect cube and it seemed to work fine (as one would guess it would). However, I imagine the further you get from a perfect cube, the less structural integrity it will have (i.e. as the side walls become lesser, the surface area expands and the likelihood of it collapsing/breaking/falling apart increases). Although, as to why someone would need such a flat box, I am not sure.

    If you put two 8.5" x 11" sheets of paper side by side you would have the equivalent of an 11" x 17" sheet of paper. I don't see how that is misleading.


    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Sorry if my comment sounded critical, it wasn't meant that way. It was more from the perspective that someone might quickly scan the instructable, look at the requirements, and determine that they need an 11"x17" sheet of paper to make the box. If they haven't got one on hand they might pass, whereas almost everyone will have standard letter paper available. I know, their loss for not reading more thoroughly, but it seems like listing the most commonly available materials might maximize the number of people who make your instructable..

    Thanks for your thoughts on shape & strength. Good starting point for those looking to go 'outside of the box' (groan, did I really write that?) with your instructable.


    12 years ago on Introduction

    yhe were did you get the stickers from? also great instructable


    12 years ago on Introduction

    yeah were did you get the sticker? lol. nice instrutable. if you wonder why there isn't manycomments, add more keywords. always works.