The Cardboard Box Maze

Cardboard box maze instructions and design idea for hours and HOURS of fun for kids and adults alike!

Inspired by a cardboard box maze my parents made for me when I was young I decided I wanted to make a maze for Judah’s 4th birthday – weeks ahead of time we put the word out to friends that we were collecting large boxes and we started making phone calls to local appliance stores. We stored the boxes in our garage until two days before the party when the construction began.

Two days before the party we assembled the first row of boxes and once we had an idea of how the boxes would fit together {they were all different sizes and shapes!} we drew up our plans for the rest of the maze. Here is a *very rough* doodle I quickly put together in PS to show you how we put it together.

Cardboard box maze instructions and design idea for hours and HOURS of fun for kids and adults alike!Green = entrances
Yellow = boxes tall enough to stand in
The green that leads to the light grey box is a seat. You crawl under it from the first row and access the seat in the second row. It was super cool! More on it below.
The super skinny part near the white was a super skinny box adults had to go on their side to get through.
The fifth row had a box with tons of ‘windows’ cut into it so it was kind of like a jail cell.

Again, it’s a super rough draft, but it gives you an idea and the crayon copy we made for ourselves kept us on track.

I suppose I should interject and mention that every time I refer to “us” making this maze I mean Paul. It was my idea, but that’s pretty much my only claim on this. He was brilliant in the construction of this and did most of the work himself.  I think I may have torn a couple pieces of tape for him. Go me!

We decided to make use of all the oddly shaped boxes, which included this super skinny one. This picture was taken in the process of being built. It definitely added an element of fun to have such a tricky box to get through – and for those not feeling up to going through it there was an alternate {wider} hallway right beside it.

To add the seat we used our side table from Ikea which fit in the boxes perfectly. We set it in, as shown in the picture, and then added another box on top so that the hole you see on the right and the opening of the box aligned – making a little cubby hole area perfect for sitting in. The box was secured in place with tape and was also between two shorter boxes, so it wasn’t going to budge. {We tested the weight limit of the table to make sure it wasn’t going to collapse on a child crawling underneath!}

Cardboard box maze instructions and design idea for hours and HOURS of fun for kids and adults alike!

Another view of the maze. You can see the “window” box on the left – it was like that when we got it and it added a super fun element to the room! A couple of the super tall boxes were decoys. Ok… they were extra boxes and we needed to store them somewhere so we stuck them on top. It worked.

The maze was a huge success with our boys, their friends, us and our friends. Everyone loved it and had a fun time playing in it. {It’s still up in our living room as I write this.}

I had Glow-sticks for all the kids to use to get themselves through the maze and, once the party was over, we had fun breaking them and splattering the inside of the maze with Glow stick innards. And by we this time I mean me.

This is very inexpensive to create, especially considering it was the source of entertainment for 35 people at a birthday party!
Cost breakdown:

Boxes: free
Tape: $6 – 6 rolls of tape from the Dollar Tree
Glow sticks: $6 – 6 packs of 12 from the Dollar Tree

Other supplies needed:

A box cutter {to make passage ways}

The best source of boxes that we found for our cardboard box maze was our friends from church. We asked several of the men that work in companies we thought would go through large boxes and they collected them for us.

We tried Lowes and HHGregg and were given a run around each time we called – I think we managed to get 1 box from them and made about a dozen phone calls requesting boxes.

If you do make one of these in your living room {or backyard… that makes a lot more sense, but a bit tricky to do in January with unpredictable weather!} please tell me. I want to come play with it – it is so fun!

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5 Replies to “The Cardboard Box Maze

  1. Judah is lucky to have such a creative mom and handy dad! How fun! Obviously, it held up well, too. If the boys get tired of climbing through, you can have them decorate the inside. That may be the best $12 spent on kids entertainment I've seen.

  2. My boys turn 2 and 3 at the end of March – if the snow is gone we are definately making one of these in our backyard. Thank you so much for sharing the plans I know they will love it!

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