Upcycled Toys: Tissue Box Car City

Empty tissue box turned into car garage

I'm not that crafty, but I am cheap, and I've noticed that kids love to play with many things that are not toys.  Some of my kids' favorite play items, in fact, have not been store-bought toys, but disposable items (often packaging) that was destined for the recycling bin or trash before discovered by the preschooler or toddler.  In the next few weeks, I'll feature some of our favorite toys made from free stuff that would otherwise have been discarded.  Stay tuned for more ideas!

Our newest favorite toy at my house are some pretend play structures created from empty tissue boxes (from Target, if you must know).  I told my husband about the idea, and he ran with it.

(My son's name has been erased from the photo.)

We also now have a fire station, police station, and hospital.  My son loves playing with these with his Hot Wheels and other small vehicles.  Hours of free entertainment for 5 minutes of effort.


If you really wanted to go whole hog with this one, you could cover the boxes with a solid or patterned paper first (maybe some leftover wrapping paper from your child's last birthday party).  I'm too lazy for that.

So the next time you are looking for a safe and eco-friendly toy for your child, check the recycling bin!

More Upcycled Toy Ideas

What's your child's favorite toy made from free materials?

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  1. FUN! What a way to upcycle! I like how you thought outside of the box. ;)

    Living So Abundantly: Give Back Thursday, http://livingsoabundantly.blogspot.com/p/give-back-thursday.html

  2. I'm not sure if you can see this link without a Facebook account, but it's a photo gallery of some of our creative re-uses of stuff--tissue box becomes a gift box, styrofoam packaging and magazine photos become a Museum of Flight, and a couple of cardboard boxes became a garage/house for action figures and cars. My husband gets credit for all the toy ideas. http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1808327142042.96456.1655854034

  3. What a great idea, really cute!


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