Author Options:

how do you cover cardboard boxes without making it look cheap? Answered

I've gotten pretty good at making boxes for storage but i've only been able to use boxes that have print or images on it. obviously i can't use a box for something with another label already on it. how can i cover this and make it look good and still durable....wrapping in wrapping paper doesn't seem durable to me.


I just made some desk organizers out of boxes and I am going to paper mache the finished products. Then I will spray with a clear matte spray paint. I'll try to remember to keep you posted!

If you just need plain practical sturdy & decent-looking, you could try covering them in brown paper grocery bags. Put the unprinted side of the bag facing out; and either use good quality packing tape, or glue it in place with white glue (spread all over, but in a very thin layer).

Or else just turn the boxes themselves inside out. (Carefully) slit open all the glued seams in the cardboard; then refold the box with the brown, unprinted inside now facing out. Tape the seams securely back together with packing tape, and then continue to fold the bottom flaps into place, etc. The inside of the box will still be advertising Pampers or Schlitz or whatever, but no one will care if you don't. :)

For fancier looks, I have a couple cardboard boxes that I've covered in Contact Paper (or one of its clones). The ones in floral print look pretty much like the fancy boxes you might buy somewhere, and the one covered in faux wood grain has fooled a couple of people into thinking that's really a wooden box. But the thing is, I have to be totally meticulous to get it looking nice - patterns matched, corners trimmed neat and dead-on square, and absolutely no wrinkles or bubbles anywhere. If you're not really into obsessive detail, this might not really be the thing for you.


9 years ago

Wrapping paper is durable if you use spray-on adhesive over the entire surface.

Self-adhesive vinyl shelf paper? If it'll hold up to wet dishes, it'll probably hold up to most reasonable storage situations, and it's available in almost as many patterns as wrapping paper. Paint?

That or glue down some fabric - unbleached cotton is quite cheap, and biodegradable :D