As you may have noticed, I have a cat, and if there is one thing I know, it’s that she likes to have a spot to hide in after she does something naughty. Here is a cute, little upcycled project to fulfill that cat desire. I will give you directions on how to make the base house and leave it up to you on how to decorate it. You can use magazine clippings, wrapping papers, paint, etc. etc. Think big.
Hot glue gun and glue
Packing tape (optional)
Lots and lots of thick cardboard (I used two large cardboard boxes)
Here are the basic measurements for the house. All measurements are approximate. You’ll need two side pieces (15.75 inches by 10.5 inches with two slots on each side and a tab on top), a steepled back piece 14 inches by 14.75 inches with two downward facing tabs on each side), a front piece with the same measurements as the back but with a door cut about 2 inches from the bottom, and a top piece (17.5 inches by 15.5 inches folded in half.
1. Measure and draw out the side pieces of the house. I made mine 10.5 inches tall and 15.75 inches long. Put two slots on each side about an inch from the edge and 3 inches apart. The slots should be about 2.5 inches long.
2. Cut the piece out and make the slots by poking cardboard with scissors/knife and cutting from there.
3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for the second side.
4. Measure and draw the back piece. It should be 14.75 inches tall to the top of the highest tab and 14 inches long. Draw two downward facing tabs on each side, about 2 inches long and 3 inches apart. For the top tabs, space them about 2 inches apart and 1 inch tall. Cut it out.
5. Using the same measurements as the back, draw the front side. Now measure out a door opening about 2 inches from the bottom of the cardboard.
6. Cut out the front piece.
7. Now for the roof. Measure out a rectangle that is 17.5 inches long and 15.5 inches wide. If you don’t have a piece this big, you can tape two 8.75 inches pieces together. Whichever method you use, be sure you can bend the piece in half length-wise (hamburger style) to make the roof (this is where the two joined pieces have an advantage).
8. Measure 5 slots on each long side about 2 inches long and 1 inch apart. The middle slot should intersect the midline of the roof.
9. Cut out the roof piece. You can cut the side edges of the roof however you would like (straight, zigzag, rounded, whatever).
10. To put together the house, put the side tabs on the front and back pieces into the slots on the two side pieces to form a box.
11. Fold the top tabs on the side pieces inwards. You can put a piece of rolled tape on them if you would like.
12. To add the roof, simply bend the cardboard and slide the tabs on the front and back of the house into the slots of the roof piece.
13. For the optional scratching post bottom, cut strips of cardboard about 1.5 inches tall and 15 inches long.
14. Hot glue the pieces together, making sure the top surface is flat. To do this, I basically put the pieces together upside down, lining the tops up using the flat surface of the table. This way any uneven pieces ended up at the bottom, leaving a flat surface for kitty naps.
15. You can reuse some cardboard scraps by cutting them to the right height, then gluing them to longer strips. Just be sure to alternate seams or reinforce with longer strips so the board is strong and durable.
16. Continue gluing together strips until it fits the dimensions of your cat house (14 inches by 15.75 inches). For me, this took 86 total layers.
17. If desired, you can reinforce the sides and bottom with tape. When you’re finished, just place on the floor and slide the house over it.
Lastly, all you have to do is decorate it however your heart desires. For mine, I painted a white base on the sides, front, and back, then added multicolored paint splatters. For the room, I covered it in wrapping paper and added a colorful duct tape trim. Let your imagination run wild and have fun.
This craft is naughty kitty approved.