DIY Cardboard Easel

Written by jakki rochelle
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DIY Cardboard Easel
Making such a simple easel gives you more free time to wait for your muse. (Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

Easels, a necessary tool for most professional painters, are usually made from wood and tend to be large and bulky. This heavy material makes it difficult to carry them around, and also expensive to purchase. Instead of dropping hard earned cash on an easel that can only be used in the studio, get thrifty and make one yourself using commonly found materials. With just a cardboard box and a few supplies, you can create an easel that is portable and recyclable, as well as convenient. Never again will you miss capturing in paint a perfect sunset, interesting tree, or fascinating bird.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Medium-sized cardboard box (preferably square)
  • Pencil or pen
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Box tape
  • Two or four clothespins

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  1. 1

    Close the flaps of the box. Use the boxing tape to secure the flaps and keep the box sturdy. The box must be strong and stable to make a good easel.

  2. 2

    Hold the ruler at a diagonal from the top left corner to the bottom right corner on one side of the box and trace along this line with a pencil or pen.

  3. 3

    Do the same on the opposite side of the box, making sure that the diagonal line on the opposite side is parallel to the first.

  4. 4

    Cut along the diagonal line and the edges of the box that connect it to the diagonal line on the opposite side. Then, continue by cutting along the second diagonal line, so that you are left with two equal halves of the box.

  5. 5

    Take one half of the box and place the long, open side flat on the ground, so that the corner edge points up. It should resemble a pyramid.

  6. 6

    Cut two small slits along the top edge of the box wide enough apart to hold your paper securely when the clothespins are inserted.

  7. 7

    Stick one side of a clothespin in each slit, so that the clothespins are pinching the front side of the box.

  8. 8

    Open the clothespins and slide a piece of paper under them to begin painting. The clothespins will keep the paper in place as you paint.

  9. 9

    Repeat steps 5-7 to make a second easel from the remaining half of the box.

Tips and warnings

  • To keep from getting paint all over your cardboard easel you can place a sheet of newspaper in between your painting and the box.

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