A friend of mine admitted that her go-to weekend craft was collage—office paper, old magazines, glue and scissors—but she couldn’t think of anything to do with these multiplying compositions. Collage is simple but infinitely adaptable; it’s accessible to any age of artist and requires only a few basic supplies. Here, we simply take the standard 2-D compositions into three dimensions.

Because this project does combine a bit of everything I love, typography, patterns, paper, miniatures and rubber cement, I did go after a more sophisticated shape for our “repair shop”. For parents who enjoy working on projects just as much as their children – make this a team effort and construct a really cool shape for your shop. For children who’d rather tackle this project on their own, any open box will do just fine!


Small or medium size cardboard box

Magazines for collage (best magazines for excellent design, patterns, colors and typography: Wired, Metropolis, NY Times Magazine and inserts, if you’re willing to give these over to your scissor-wielding progeny!)


Rubber cement (hands-down the best glue for paper projects) or any glue or glue stick

Toy cars or other small play things

Age: 4+

Time: 30 minutes to an hour

Project Steps:

First, construct your shape. Go sophisticated or stay simple.

curious jane box

Next, collage away! Cover the box, inside and out.

curious jane box rubber cement

Here we chose patterns, text, large type, and natural scenes for an all graphic backdrop. As a challenge, we left out people and recognizable objects.

Have on hand for next Friday’s project:

Plain white paper (slightly thicker is better)

Construction paper


Bone folder or butter knife

Black pen, markers, crayons

Curious Jane, founded by contributor Samantha Razook Murphy, offers project-based after-school programs and summer camps, revolving around creativity in the arts and sciences.


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One Comment


  1. Posted by: Lia

    Oh yay! I am really looking forward to this project. The upcoming rainy weekend just got a little more interesting…

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