DIY toys shape building blocks

We love making our own toys from recycled materials, this project is 2 activities in one! The first part is the messy process art painting of the shapes and the second part is building with your shapes. It's also great for different age children, my 2yr old loved doing all the messy painting and my 5yr old loved building with the finished shapes. This project is inspired by a fab project we found on the awesome Handy With Scissors blog.


  • Thick corrugated cardboard
  • Paints
  • Craft knife


Cut all your shapes from thick cardboard using a craft knife, making them all similar dimensions. All of our shapes had approximately a 12cm diameter. Then begin painting your shapes. My little one loves a bit of messy process art and enjoyed making splats and splodges of paint on the cardboard.

child painting cardboard shapes

We let our shapes dry and then painted the other side as well.

messy process art kids painting

When the paint is dry, cut slots in each side using a craft knife. The slots need to be a quarter of the width of your shape and the same thickness of your cardboard.

DIY cardboard building shapes

Now start building!

colourful painted cardboard building shapes

home made cardboard building shapes toy


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