Cardboard Box Puppet Theater

I have been getting weekly messages from, since I was expecting my son.  In the last message of 2006, “the New Year’s Message” they were wishing all the moms to “be the best mom you can be.”  What a nice new year’s wish! That wish required 3 actions:

  1. Be patient
  2. Spend more time with your kid (s)
  3. Be a creative mom who addresses child’s imagination.

We are already in the middle of January; we are working hard (or hardly working) on our New Year’s Resolutions. I guess, making a home-made puppet theater to play with the animal hand puppets gifted by grandma goes under #3.

I have been saving the cardboard box of toy chest we purchased at IKEA to make this theater. I was able to put the cardboard theater together in a night, before my husband could attempt to abandon us, because of my hoarding of packaging materials (to make toys and stuff).

Materials you need:

  • Cardboard box
  • Different colors of construction paper
  • Fabric for the theatre’s curtains (I bought velvet fabric)
  • Cardboard cutter
  • Glue
  • Scissors



  1. Measure  and mark the opening for the window. Cut a square window in front of the box with the help of a cardboard cutter. First just make a window, but do not break the box down.
  2. Cover the front part of the box with different colors of construction paper of your choice. Find a name for your theater and print it on the top of the box if you like. You can put the smiling and weeping faces, which represents comedy and tragedy, as well .
  3. Cut the back of the box just as shown on the picture. You are going to open up and line the triangular pieces and use it as support so the theater can stand on its own.
  4. Take the piece you cut out from the back. Cut it 2-3″ below the triangular piece meets the square piece.  Cut two rectangular pieces with the cardboard cutter under the triangle. Keep these pieces (ears) down and fold the rest to the back. Insert these pieces (ears) through the cuts you make on the top of the theater.  I added this top piece for decorative purposes only.
  5. Depending on the size of the box, prepare the curtains and put them up. I bought two pieces of velvety fabric and hemmed the ends with the sewing machine. I got a chance to use my sawing machine, which needed my attention anyways. I pleated the black velvet curtain in order to pull it up nicely, I arranged the pleats while attaching them to the box.
  6. I was able to attach the curtains to the box by using very thin but long nails. I was not able to see the end of the screws sticking out the back of the box but if your do then just use pliers to twist it to make surethey do not poke out. Just in case, I taped blue paint tape (the one that is used to tape to the corners of the wall before painting) to cover up the nails . I placed the beaded ribbon to further ornate it.
  7. Finally, I tied the side curtains up to the sides. You might use a yarn thread or by making curtain tiebacks from the fabric.

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