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Crafts for Kids: Collage Tote

Updated on June 22, 2014
Nature Inspired Cardboard Tote
Nature Inspired Cardboard Tote | Source

Practical and Environmental

These fun little numbers can be made for both boys & girls. The sky is the limit to the number of designs and uses as well. Depending on the size of your box you could use these recycled cardboard totes as a:

  • Lunch Box
  • Mini Purse
  • Activity Bag
  • Snack Bag
  • Party Gift Bag
  • Holiday Gift Bag

Truly one of a kind works of art! Even if someone else has one of their own it will never be exactly the same as the one your child has (or made). This is more than recycling, it's recycling with style!

What you need
What you need | Source


Cardboard box - whichever size you choose


Mod Podge



Paint Brush

Old Magazines, Newspaper, craft paper, scrap-booking paper, or wrapping paper

Trimmed Top of the box
Trimmed Top of the box | Source
Template from extra tab
Template from extra tab | Source
Trace the template onto the box
Trace the template onto the box | Source
Box with handle holes cut
Box with handle holes cut | Source

How to Make a Collage Tote:

1. Cut the tabs off the open top of the box.

2. Use one of the tabs you have just cut off to create a template for your handle holes.

3. Measure with your ruler an equal length from the sides and top on the front and back to ensure your holes will match up.

4. Trace the template on the front and back sides using your marker.

5. Cut out the handle holes.

6. Cut out images you like from old magazines or alternatively just rip up different sizes of newspaper, wrapping paper, or scrap-book paper.

7. Apply your pieces of paper to the box using your paint brush and the Mod Podge.

8. Once your box is covered, give the entire thing an extra coat or two of Mod Podge.

9. Allow the project to dry completely.

10. Using your ruler, the marker, or your finger, press in the short sides of the box to create a crease running halfway down. This will allow the two handle holes to come together.

Sorry I didn't take any pictures of the project being glued. My fingers got way too sticky at that point and I didn't have any helpers that were old enough to work a camera.

Get Creative!

Try different sized boxes or collage materials when making this project.

You could use scraps of fabric instead of paper for a fabulously textured finish.

Add glitter, buttons, stickers and more!

Cut strips of yarn, dip them in glue, and apply them in patterns for a truly unique tote.

Crease the sides together
Crease the sides together | Source

Now go try it yourself & Have fun!

I hope you enjoyed my tutorial on how to make a collage tote using recycled materials.

This particular one was made for my youngest son (although my youngest daughter got to be the model holding it in the picture above). He loves flowers and birds. I wanted to show that these can be made for both boys and girls, depending on what you choose to decorate them with.

I used nature magazines to find all sorts of pictures he loves. When he finally got to hold it he was very excited!

Proud Project Holder
Proud Project Holder | Source


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    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Looking forward to it and yes, your secret kid recipe looks pretty great!

    • Mom Kat profile image

      Mom Kat 5 years ago from USA

      Thanks btrbell. I always say I only cooked up cute kids :) Mom Kat's secret kid recipe... lol

      Being crafty is just something I've always done. I'm glad you like it! I'll be doing at least one a day (or the equivalent of) for the rest of the 14/14 challenge, so maybe you'll get some more ideas you like from them :)

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Too cute! I love all these ideas! What a beautiful family you have! Thanks for the great ideas!