Fabric Covered Boxes

by Colleen Moulding


Cardboard boxes covered with pretty fabrics can be an attractive addition to many rooms. They can store hair accessories and brushes in the bathroom, underwear, scarves or make-up in the bedroom, writing materials, knitting, crafts or remote controls in the living room and just about anything in kid's and teens bedrooms.

They are very easy to make from boxes that would otherwise be thrown away and oddments of leftover fabric.

Instructions given are for a standard oblong shoe box but can be adapted for any shape or size.

You will need:

  • 1 shoe box and lid

  • Approximately 1 metre, 11/4 yard of fabric

  • Spray adhesive
  1. Take a measurement all the way around the box plus 2.5cm/1" and measure the depth of the box plus 2.5cm/1". Make a paper pattern of the rectangle, then pin it on to your fabric and cut out. Measure the bottom of the box and cut a rectangle of fabric slightly smaller all the way round than this measurement.

  2. Beginning with one of the long sides, spray the box with the adhesive and smooth the longer rectangle of fabric on to the box, leaving a little at the top and base to turn over neatly later. Move around the sides of the box, spraying and smoothing one side at a time. When you reach the end, fold the cut edge under so that it fits the box exactly, use a little adhesive to stick it to itself, then stick it to the box using the spray adhesive.

  3. Neaten the top edge by sticking the fabric to the inside of the box. Turn the box over and glue down the long edges then fold the corners into mitres and glue to the box. Take the smaller rectangle of fabric and stick this on to the base with the spray.

  4. Cut the fabric for the lid. If you want a padded lid cut a piece of wadding/batting the same size as the top of the lid and stick this on first. Then take measurements of the length and width of the lid over the padding, including the sides and not forgetting to add 2.5cm/1" to each measurement. Make a paper pattern, then cut your fabric. Spray the padding or the top of the lid with adhesive and smooth on your fabric. Stick down the long sides first, then fold in the fabric at the corners and stick down the short sides. Finish off by gluing down the extra fabric to the inside of the lid.

  5. If you would like to line the inside of the box you could measure and glue fabric in the same way that the outside was covered or you could cut pieces of cardboard to fit exactly, pad with a little wadding/batting, cover with fabric and spray glue into place.

Have fun with matching and co-ordinating fabrics or use similar techniques with wallpaper or gift wrap instead of fabric. Once you get started every shoe box that comes into your home will be an opportunity to be creative and make pretty, practical storage that will help eliminate clutter and bring order to closets and shelves in any room of the home.


Colleen Moulding is a freelance writer from England where she has had many features on parenting, childcare, play, travel, entertaining and the Internet published in national newspapers and magazines. She has also published a variety of women's and children's fiction. Her work frequently appears at many sites on the Internet and at her own site for women All That Women Want.com a magazine, web guide and resource for women everywhere. Why not drop by? It was made for you! www.allthatwomenwant.com Subscribe to the free monthly e-zine by sending a blank e-mail to: allthatwomenwant-subscribe@yahoogroups.com Copyright 2001 Colleen Moulding

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