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Custom gift boxes

Quality gift boxes can sometimes end up costing more than the gift. We show you how to make your own rigid gift boxes for any size or shape of gift.


With this method you can design a box to fit almost any gift for a fraction of what it would cost to buy a ready-made gift box. It's  the perfect solution to package an awkwardly shaped item. For this project we used plain paper, but you could use wrapping paper or scrapbooking paper.


Thick board (about 2mm thick preferably) with lining one side

Paper to cover

Masking tape

Craft knife and cutting mat

Steel ruler

Craft glue or sprayable adhesive


Bone folder or similar




1. Start by measuring the item that will go into the box. You need to know length, width and height. For a snug fit add about 4mm to the length and width.

GOOD TO KNOW: For this project the gift measures L=149mm, W=80mm, H=63mm, so the dimensions for the box are L=153mm, W=84mm, H=66mm.

2. Once you have the measurements, cut board for the base (A x B) and the lid (C x D). Also cut the cover paper for the base (G x H) and for the lid (I x J), and the spacers (E & F).

GOOD TO KNOW: If you have unlined board, cut paper to the same dimensions and stick it to the inner side of the board before you start cutting.

3. With the unlined side face up, take the lid board and align the spacer along one edge. Use your knife to score along the opposite edge of the spacer. You want to cut halfway through the board, so that it can be easily folded. A good tip is to do a number of light scores until you reach the required depth. This will help to avoid accidentally cutting all the way through the board. Repeat this process for the other 3 sides.

4. Cut out the 4 corners. Repeat this process with the base board.

5. On the cover, draw a line 20mm from two perpendicular sides on the reverse of the lid cover paper. These are used to align the lid board to the centre, as shown. With your pencil, lightly trace around the corners of the board and then repeat for the base cover. 

6. This next step will give your gift box a professional finish and ensure your corners are neat and crisp. Measure 2mm from the corner outwards towards along the length of the lid cover and make a small mark as shown. Cut from this mark along the line all the way to the edge of the paper. Now cut out a wedge - as shown above - at approximately 30-degrees from the first cut. Now cut the corners out to create the tabs.

GOOD TO KNOW:  A good size for the tabs is 20mm wide.

7. Time to assemble the boxes. Fold each side of the box over all the way so it touches the centre. Fold two sides up so that the corners touch. They should touch exactly as shown above. Secure with a small strip of masking tape. Repeat this for all corners.

GOOD TO KNOW: Ensure that you pull the tape tight to force the corners together. This will make the box nice and rigid.

GOOD TO KNOW: Before you continue, check that the lid fits over the base. There will be a bit of play at this stage but this will reduce once the cover is applied.

8. To cover the box apply a thin layer of glue to the back of the lid cover. Place the box lid on the paper - using the drawn lines as a guide. You want to align the right angles of the guide marks with the corner profile of the corners. Turn over and rub the paper down on the surface.

9. Fold the sides up and wrap the tabs round. Make sure you pull the sides tight as you fold them round to prevent unsightly air pockets from developing.

GOOD TO KNOW: When folding over, use a bone folder or similar flattening tool to smooth down all the edges and prevent air bubbles from occurring.

Finish off your gift box with your choice of embellishments.


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