How to Make a Folded Paper Gift Box

completed gift boxes

The Spruce / Kate Pullen

Project Overview
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Estimated Cost: $1

Paper gift boxes are quick and easy to make, and they can be adapted in a variety of ways to suit the occasion or the gift inside. You can adjust the size of the box depending on the size of paper you use. The finished box will always be a quarter of the size of the original paper square when measured from corner to corner. These boxes are excellent for small gifts and party favors, and they can be customized for holidays or to fit the recipient's style by decorating the paper with rubber stamps and other embellishments.


It can be helpful to use scrap paper to practice making the box before working on one you plan to give as a gift. You can even practice different decorating methods, such as rubber stamp positions and techniques, on your scrap paper box.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Bone folder, a dull-edge hand tool used to fold and crease crafting materials (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Glue (optional)
  • Decorating materials, such as rubber stamps (optional)


  • 2 Square pieces of cardstock paper (or another sturdy paper)


  1. Mark the Center of the Paper

    You'll start by making the lid, and then you'll repeat the process with a slightly smaller square of paper to make the base of the box.

    Begin with one sheet of square paper. Draw two lines diagonally from corner to corner using your pencil and ruler. This will form a large X, marking the center of the square. Don't worry about marking the paper, as the marks will be on the inside and won't be seen.

    marking center of square
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  2. Make the First Folds

    Fold each corner into the center of the square. If you have one, use a bone folder tool to help make a crisp fold. This will give you a high-quality finish. Otherwise, firmly crease the folds by hand. Then, unfold the paper.

    folding corner into center
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  3. Make the Second Folds

    Next, fold each corner to the line on the opposite side that you made by folding the corner diagonal to it. Then, unfold the paper again.

    folding corner to first line
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  4. Make the Third Folds

    At this point, you should be seeing a series of squares created by the various folds. You will now finish that with one last set of folds.

    Fold each corner to meet the fold line that's closest to it. Then, unfold the paper once more.

    making final fold
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  5. Make Cuts and Decorate the Paper

    Make four cuts as indicated in the photo below. It makes no difference which set of corners you cut as long as they are diagonal to each other.

    If you want to decorate the paper with stamps or other artwork, now is a good time to do it while it's still flat. (It will be more difficult, but not impossible, to decorate once the box is folded.) If you're using ink, allow time for it to dry before proceeding to fold the box.

    cut corners diagram
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  6. Fold in the Corners Without Cuts

    Now you're ready to fold your paper gift box. You can use a dab of glue to help hold the folds in place, but it's not essential.

    First, fold the two corners without cuts into the center.

    folding opposite corners to the center
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  7. Fold Up 2 Sides

    Take the same edges of the corners you just folded, and fold them up along the next fold line to form the sides of the box.

    folding edges to form sides
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  8. Fold in the Cut Ends

    Fold in the cut ends to form the other sides.

    folding in cut edges
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen
  9. Make the Final Folds and Repeat for the Box Base

    Fold the two remaining pieces into the middle of the box. This will securely hold the box together. There is no need to add glue unless you want additional durability.

    With the lid complete, you can now make the box base in exactly the same way. However, this time you will cut the square just a fraction smaller, so the base will fit into the lid.

    finished paper gift box
    The Spruce / Kate Pullen

Watch Now: 6 Clever Ways to Wrap Gifts