DIY Cereal Box Play Village

Turn cereal boxes and other recyclables into a fun play village for kids!

cardboard box DIY village craft

Hi friends! How are you holding up? If you are looking for quarantine craft ideas, you’ve come to the right place!

I’ve been working hard behind the scenes to come up with crafts you can make at home with things you might already have on hand. And I think I’ve nailed this one… I’m going to show you how to turn cereal or cracker boxes and other recyclables into a darling play village!

play village made of cardboard food boxes

It’s the perfect craft to work on while you’re in home isolation because it will give you something fun to do and then when you’re finished, it’ll entertain your kids! Win win! I wasn’t even finished painting yet and had kids begging me to play with it.

Don’t miss the video tutorial at the bottom of this post.

supplies needed

Supplies Needed

  • Cardboard Food Boxes and Tubes
  • Craft Paint
  • Paint Brushes
  • Colored Cardstock
  • Scissors
  • Hot Glue Gun + Glue Sticks
    • Optional: Washi Tape, Gold Paint Pen, Assorted Embellishments

Step 1 – Flip the Boxes Inside Out

Carefully undo the glue holding the box together and flip it inside out. Glue it back together using hot glue.

how to flip a cardboard food box inside out

Step 2 – Paint the Boxes

I started painting the background colors, let those dry, then penciled on designs and filled them in with paint.

The inspiration for my design was the It’s A Small World ride at Disneyland, but you can do any style of village that you want. It’d be darling to make a western main street with saloon, barber shop and hotel or a set of Danish row houses or English cottages or Parisian bistros. Let your creativity go wild!

paint a recycled cereal box

Step 3 – Add Details

I happened to have a gold paint pen in my craft stash, so I added lots of metallic details to my design. I also used washi tape to add interest. 

And I cut a lot of the more intricate designs out of cardstock, especially the roofline details. Some I cut by hand and some I cut using my Silhouette machine.

cereal box village DIY

And there you have it. Make it for a child you love or let them make it with help. I had so much fun making this first version that I made a second one too. This time, I went with a western town theme.

I used the same techniques, but this one has a completely different feel. The jail tower is a Pringles can covered in kraft paper. Everything else is cracker boxes, paper and paint. I used my Silhouette machine and scrap adhesive vinyl to cut the words on the town signs. 


I can’t decide which one I love more! Both have provided hours of entertainment for my kiddos. 

DIY Cereal Box Play Village Video Tutorial


Like this project? Pin it so you don’t forget it.

cardboard box craft idea



  1. Dust? Vacuum? Wash windows? Clean-up the Create room? Nah, make a village will be much more fun! (Sweeps everything off the table and dumps boxes and paper and paint on top of it.) Fabulous job on your play village.


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