This TikToker DIYed a Gorgeous Fireplace By Upcycling a Cardboard Box

published Dec 6, 2023
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Ever wanted the cozy look of a fireplace, but couldn’t put one in because you rent (or because the cost of construction is prohibitive)? Well, you’re in luck. Earlier this week, a sustainability expert who simply goes by the name Amber, posted a hack that lets anyone create a fireplace not with bricks and concrete, but with something more budget-friendly: cardboard.

In her TikTok post, Amber shows cardboard boxes from U-Haul that have been cut and shaped into a realistic-looking fireplace. Then, the clip cuts to the installation painted over with white, before getting decorated with various items for different seasons. For instance, for autumn, the piece features dried leaves and logs, while for winter, the mantel is adorned with stockings.

On her blog Sustainably Amber, the Texas-based content creator detailed how she carried out the DIY project. First, she gathered three extra-large U-Haul boxes, then folded two of the cardboard into a long rectangular shape. Then, she drew and cut an outline of the fireplace. Next, she folded the sides and used hot glue on the edges. To make the structure more stable, Amber suggests cutting 20 small triangles with a 90-degree angle and gluing those inside from top to bottom.

For the mantle, she used some spare boxes from IKEA (but any kind of cardboard would do), making sure to strengthen it by filling the containers with more cardboard inside. For the final touches, she cut out a bottom threshold where the logs would sit, then applied paint. Voilà!

As a bonus, you can also add a couple of pillars made out of cardboard tubes, as well as “bricks” using corrugated fiberboard, a Sharpie, and red paint.

It’s a lot of work, and you’ll have to set aside several hours to do the project, but the result looks great and it’s much cheaper to craft than to build a real fireplace.

“Such a great idea!! I gotta do this,” said a follower on TikTok. Others also gave helpful suggestions. “I did this last Christmas. Then kept it and changed the bricks to black for Halloween. And now red for Christmas.”

Just remember to secure the fireplace to the floor really well if you have cats at home. “This is so cute! I wish I could but my cats don’t know how to act,” reads a comment, to which Amber replied: “Could be the perfect playground or scratching post.”

You can read more about the hack by checking out Amber’s blog here.