Welcome to my cardboard craft blog

Whether you are just plain bored or simply too broke to purchase other materials; cardboard is free! Cardboard is such a versitile craft medium that you can make just about anything from it. All you need is a little knowledge about different construction techniques to ignite your own art passion for cardboard. This blog is intended to show the construction techniques I use in my own cardboard crafts. When you learn the secrets of creating strength with cardboard you can create whatever you desire. From simple items like picture frames to extremely large pieces of usable furniture; it will all be possible. Travel along with me as I show you the secrets hidden within the cardboard. Go green or save a tree or just to keep it out of a landfill.... whatever your choice of phrases.... start creating your own cardboard art. If you find this blog helpful, please recommend it to your friends.

If you are new to this blog it's best to read the numbered labels first. ie: 1 - What do you see? 2 - Tools you need etc.

In those labels you will find the basic information you need to get started making your own cardboard furniture and crafts.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Basic tools needed

There are some basic tools needed when working with cardboard.  What you actually need for each project will depend on what you are making.  I will show you what I have right now and add to this list as I work with newer projects.  This is what I would call a basic starter kit for working with single or double fluted cardboard.  That's the average type of packing and shipping cardboard found in any dumpster. 

This is my basic tool kit

1.  Plastic rulers (from my quilting supplies)
2.  A metal square ruler
3.  A craft knife (breakable blade)
4.  Measuring tape
5. Foam sander (this has 2 grit sizes, fine and course)
6. Scissors (for cutting paper)
7.  Pencils
8.  Metal wood rasp (used for knocking off hard edges of glued joins, costs about $2 at Big Lots)

I also have a supply of different glues

1. Small craft glue gun and lots of glue sticks
2.  All purpose white glue
3. Rubber cement

Be sure to check out my post for making homemade glue and paste under the label "3 - Hints tips and stuff"

One of the most important items in my basic tool kit is the tape.  This tape is very important for sealing the joins and making them strong.  It's also rather expensive and hard to find.  This is the type of tape that was used for sealing cardboard boxes long before self-adhesive brand tapes (like scotch) were invented.  This tape is made from paper with reinforcing strings running through it.  The glue is activated with water which creates a really good bond with cardboard. 

I believe I bought that roll of tape from Office Depot or from Staples for around $12.  If anyone knows of a cheaper place to purchase it please let me know.  The tape is 3 inches wide so I cut it into strips of 1 inch to help stretch it farther.  For most joins on the cardboard a 1 inch strip works fine.

The water activated glue and the paper of the tape helps it bond better with the paper of the cardboard than a plastic based tape does.  It can also be painted as if it were a part of the cardboard because it's paper.  Plastic type tapes do not hold paint well.  Don't be tempted to use masking tape either.  Masking tape will not hold a permanent bond with the cardboard and you will have wasted your time. 

Along with these basic tools an electric jig-saw is helpful for cutting multiple pieces of cardboard at the same time.  (I'm dreaming of getting a Dremmel but it's out of my budget.) 

This should be enough basic tools to get you started.    

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