Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Cardboard Houses

This is Post #2 in a trilogy of cardboard posts! Post #1 is here, in which I talk about how I usually leave my cardboard projects in their natural brown state but wish I didn't.

Today's project is a cardboard house. Not a 3D dollhouse like this or this, or even - less traditionally - this

but a facade of a house.

Actually, I made three houses. And by "made", I really mean "drew with Sharpie on a big flat piece of cardboard." The big flat pieces of cardboard were in themselves an adventure to procure. I have several go-to stores including IKEA and Costco where I hunt for cardboard, and at which the success rate is usually very high, but it does require time and effort, not to mention some tricky driving after because one's rear view mirror shows, rather than the road, the gargantuan cardboard pieces hogging the back of the car instead. Still, it's so worth it - there is nothing quite like the thrill of a cardboard hunt. 

But we were talking about houses. 

This was house #1: The Residential Mansion. 

House #2: The Restaurant/Cafe

House #3: the Peranakan Shophouse from Singapore circa early 1900s.

When the details were all drawn in, I filled them in with acrylic paint.

Just two accent colors - green and white, the signature colors of the company which commissioned this work,

and no more than accents, because these houses were display boards to showcase multicolored holiday cards, and we wanted those to stand out.

Here they are, lined up against my garage door.

This is the stand-up support mechanism. 

Here's how a flat facade turns into a display board.

Strips of cardboard - pair up a single layer with a double-layered stack,

with the single-layered piece a little taller than the double-layered stack,

and glue that along the windowsill.

Now you can rest a photo or a card on it,

and it won't slip off.

The house display boards and ledges were packed separately, and the ledges then attached at the destination. Here are some in-action shots with card samples from a previous year.

Not many of us have space in our homes for a display board of this size, but imagine this on a smaller scale, perhaps for just one or two photos - a single window, a pair of double doors, even a cardboard easel for one. Unlimited possibilities with just a Sharpie and (if you're so inclined) some paint.


  1. So cantik!! So magical!! Can't get enough of your wonderful cardboard projects and ideas. Gotta try making them soon with kids in their school holiday soon.

  2. OMG, I just love your Peranakan Shophouse. It stood out from the very first picture on the post. I'm living just around the corner from Joo Chiat now, and these beautiful buildings are my favourite architecture in Singapore.

    1. I miss Joo Chiat, Katie! And Katong. And the east coast in general. Lucky you to be living there!

  3. Gorgeous and adorable.
    Love the idea of family photos

  4. Wow! I love the 3-D effect that the colors add!

  5. Love your drawings, esp. the shophouse! <3
    Curious though, why are there two windows on each side of the first storey? I usually observe only one on each side haha (or did I misinterpret your drawing?)

    1. Ah, because we wanted to maximize the number of windows/doors so as to display as many cards as possible!

  6. Amazing idea! And I had to comment because someone sent you a card that says 'Merry AF'. LMAO


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