Quick and Dirty But Long-Lasting - Cardboard Box Shelf

There were a lot of cardboard boxes on the ground with his stocks inside when I visited my friend's place. I asked him "don't you feel inconvenient walking around?" He said yes, but he got used to it and didn't know what he can do for his stocks.

I asked him "do you want to buy a shelf?" He said he doesn't want to spend money on the shelf and there is no elevator in his place. Then I look at those boxes, they are mostly in the same size... hmmm, good shape! I told my friend "I can make shelf for you with these boxes."

At beginning, he rejected my idea, he said "those stocks are heavy, the cardboard boxes can't hold them for long time. I don't want them crash and destroy my stocks." I insisted "How about let's try first and observe, if you still think it's still not a good ideal, I'll restore them." Then, I made this shelf within half hour.

A year after, I asked him "how do you like the shelf?" He said "I love them! It's super useful and convenient that I can organize and get the model I need very easily. Thank you!" I got confirmed that they did well and last long, so I decided to post here!

Let's see how I made this quick and dirty but long-lasting cardboard box shelf!

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Step 1: You Don't Need Much, But Be Prepared

You will need:

Step 2: Make One Block of the Shelf

  1. Cut the sides and make the support

    This is the secret (not anymore) of the long-lasting! Cut both inner flaps (short sides) by a scissor or a knife (obvious I like knife more in the video :p). Then tape both flaps together, and put it to the side for now.

  2. Fix the side with tape for easier to stack up the boxes.

  3. Locate the support in the middle/center of the box.

Step 3: Repeat

Depends on what size of shelf you want, repeat step 1 to step 4 till you're satisfied or exhausted. Note that The top layers don't really need support if you're not putting stuffs above them. ;)

(Note: you can also have different size of boxes to have different size for each block. Also, I don't stick or tie the boxes together because I want the flexibility that I can re-arrange the boxes easily, but you can tie them with tapes or plastic ties if you're not moving them here and there.)

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    4 Discussions

    dragon flyer

    7 months ago

    Someone after my own heart - I love cardboard boxes! They're the most efficient use of space I've ever found: thin walls that take up very little space, and straight sides with no overhang that make maximum use of space.

    I don't have a need for them for shelving, but I use them to store most anything. I cut them down to whatever size I need if I can't find the right size, and then cut slots for handholds - or install a handle if I happen to have one that fits - so they can be pulled out to access the contents. They can slide onto shelves, but the most useful place is acting as drawers in bottom kitchen cupboards, the back of which is so impossible to get in to....

    (Oh, and you can cover them or decorate them if what they look like matters...)

    2 replies
    vindy0530dragon flyer

    Reply 7 months ago

    Ya, cardboard is amazing! My friend also use it for holding her kitchen knifes. :p I'm not too into use cardboard for kitchen stuff for now until I find a way to get rid of cockroach. I know they love cardboard as I do...

    (Thanks for the idea for the decoration! I didn't really think of it till you mentioned :p)

    dragon flyervindy0530

    Reply 7 months ago

    Ouch; counting my lucky stars to not have a cockroach problem - the Pantry Moths that got into my house somehow last year were bad enough! It's amazing where bugs will find spaces to make their nests...


    7 months ago

    I didn't think cardboard could stand up to weight like that! Thanks for the tip!