Thanks for your interest in our box vehicles and for your patience while waiting for this tutorial. These larger trucks each use 1.5 nappy/diaper boxes, for cars using only one box see Part 1 – simple car. For dump truck ideas see here. You could also make a larger truck using the same techniques from these tutorials out of a larger box, for example this large fire engine was made from a box approximately 150cm x 80cm x 80cm (60″ x 31.5″ x 31.5″).



-two boxes (I have used nappy/diaper boxes but any box will work. The size and shape will impact the overall look of the truck, or how much trimming you need to do to get a shape that you are happy with. Depending on the design you want for your truck, the boxes could be different sizes)

-tape (I have used packing tape and double sided tape)

-scissors or craft knife

-coloured cardboard for decorating the car (I have used 3 pieces of green cardboard to cover the nappy/diaper boxes with some to spare but you may wish to have extra available, plus pieces of other colours for details)

Optional supplies:

-thick cardboard pieces to add details or for reinforcement


-pen or sharpie for adding details

-circular objects to trace around and/or stencils for adding details such as wheels and windows

-string or ribbon to add straps or handles


1. Cut one box in half sideways

2. Choose the design you want for your truck. The title photo of this tutorial shows some potential designs:

-Bus: back and side flaps removed from the whole box, front flap vertical for a windshield and half box attached to front

-Fire engine: all flaps removed from the whole box and half box attached at back

-Delivery truck: all flaps vertical on the whole box and half box attached to front

For the garbage truck, cut off the front and side flaps of the whole box and tape the back flap horizontally, this will create a larger top of the truck. If this makes the box too small for your child to fit in, simply remove the back flap also. Cut the half box diagonally to create the hopper, leaving an edge at the top and an edge at the back. The measurements I used left an 11cm (just under 4.5 inches) edge at the top and 7cm (just over 2.5 inches) edge at the back, but vary these according to the size and shape of your box and the design you wish to have. I also cut out a small section of the back edge for interest.

Keep the large piece of cut off cardboard if you wish to make a flap for the back. Trim it so the fold meets the top edge of the hopper with a large enough width to tape to the top inside of the hopper. I also cut out a small section in the middle at the bottom of this flap for interest.

If you know you wish to remove the bottom of the box (see step #8), now is a good time to do it.

3. Attach the half box to the back of the whole box with packing tape (the flap will be attached in step #6).


4. Cover the cab of the garbage truck. I used white cardboard, leaving overhang, and attached it with packing tape.

5. Cover the sides of the garbage truck. I used green cardboard with overhang and attached with packing tape. Where the green meets the white cab, I used double sided tape for a clean edge, however packing tape would be fine here too. Cover the flap, leaving overhang, and using packing tape.

6. Cover the top and back of the garbage truck. I like to cut the cardboard to size and attach with double sided tape, however packing tape would be fine here too. Attach the flap to the inside of the hopper so that the fold is at the top edge.


7. Decorate the garbage truck.  I have added wheels, windows, safety stripe, safety lights, headlights, break lights and a recycling symbol. The complexity is completely up to you. You could add a steering wheel, doors, grille, wing mirrors and so on. The title photo of this tutorial gives some inspiration for adding details to make different types of trucks.


8. If your truck is for stuffed animal friends or if you are keen to push your little one around, you could leave the bottom of the box intact. If your child is older and will run around in the box, cut out the bottom for them to stand in. I leave mine like this and the little man holds the box itself but you could add either handles or straps by making holes in the sides and attaching string or ribbon.


Enjoy! (Yes, we still have the bus from almost a year ago!)

Please let me know if there is anything that could be clearer or if you have other questions.

Click the photos below to see other designs in our box vehicle fleet.