How to form a strong cardboard box

Updated February 21, 2017

Don't waste money buying fancy plastic storage containers when you can recycle cardboard boxes to do exactly the same thing. Not only do you save money, but you can do your bit for the environment, too. By strengthening or reinforcing an existing box, you can easily use it for storing stuff in cupboards, under the stairs or in a wardrobe. Form a strong cardboard box from an existing box with the help of some simple tools.

Obtain a cardboard box from a supermarket, hardware store or a friendly neighbour. Choose a box that is the right size for its purpose and is of a good quality. There are plenty of unwanted boxes out there. If the box starts off in good shape, then its life can be prolonged further, and it will be even stronger.

Place lengths of duct tape or gaffer tape along the flaps of the box that form its base. Cut strips and stick them directly on top of where the flaps overlap. Add several shorter strips perpendicular to this seam for extra security.

Tape across each edge of the box, plus down the vertical corners. Do this by cutting strips of tape and placing them on the exposed edges. Make sure you cover all areas.

Glue a layer of corrugated card or paper onto the inside of the box. Corrugated paper contains ridges across its surface, which will give strength to the box. You can buy this type of paper from a craft store. Alternatively, simply use squares of other cardboard box to the same job. Cut them to size using a pair of scissors.

Cover the whole inner surface of the box using the paper or cardboard squares. Make sure the glue is applied right to the edge of each piece so the squares do not peel away from the cardboard box.

Tidy up the seams and edges of the inside of the box by adding more strips of tape across the edges and joints. This will make your box strong, presentable and durable, while ensuring the corrugated paper will not become unstuck.


Add corrugated paper to the outside of the box as well, to make it even stronger. Corrugated paper is available in a variety of colours. Try painting the outside of the cardboard box the same colour of the paper; not only will you have a strong box, but a colourful one, too.

Things You'll Need

  • Duct tape or gaffer tape
  • Corrugated card or paper
  • Glue
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About the Author

Based in Bristol, Philippa Jones has been a music journalist and script writer since 2007, working across a range of radio programs in the U.K. and Australia. Her articles have appeared in "Impact Magazine," "The Mic" and in local newspapers. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in politics from the University of Nottingham.