Milk Carton Sailboat


sailboat-blue-finishedbig.wGetting Started

Always use your imagination and be creative when building these kids crafts or any others. It's your creation, so be inventive when looking for building supplies — you just may be surprised! When building your project, experiment with new and different ways of putting it together. The most important thing is to have fun!

boat-suplies-blue-tapeFind these or similar supplies!

  • Blue Masking Tape
    (Optional For Customizing)
  • Regular Masking Tape
  • String or Thread
  • Straws or Sticks
  • Milk Carton
  • Plastic Bag

1. Cutting your carton!

Place the carton down on a surface with the open side facing up. Using a ruler, measure and mark halfway points at each corner, like you see here. Next, use the ruler to draw a straight line from point to point all the way around the carton. By cutting on this line, you will create a perfectly even boat hull. Now cut your milk carton in half.



2. Taping the carton!

Start the first row of tape at the bottom. Tape your carton all the way around, leaving about an inch of excess on the front. Add two or three first row layers, until you no longer see through to any printing on the carton.


hull-taped-folded3. Keep adding tape!

Continue adding layers of tape about 1/4-inch up from the bottom of the layer below. I like to add two layers of tape for each taped row, ensuring that you will not see through. This also makes it much stronger.

4. Tape the top!

Finish up by adding blue tape for the top row, folding it carefully over and into the inside.


mast-completed5. Make a mast!

I like to use straws for my masts. However, you can use just about anything, like a stick, or a pen or pencil. Straws work the best. Start out by covering two straws with tape. This makes them look like real wooden masts. You can add a strip of blue tape at the top for a cool finishing touch.

6. Make a boom!

You can make a boom that moves by using a strap that wraps around the mast. Start by cutting a 56 inch piece from the second taped straw. To make the strap, try using a 3 inch piece of tape, roll it onto itself lengthwise, and flatten it. Next carefully wrap the strap around your mast and tape it to the boom.

7.Add a bowspirit!

You can attach a bowspirit to the front of your sailboat hull. Use the excess piece of taped straw left over from your boom. Tape it on the front of your ship. Add a layer of blue tape to the front, so that it matches your mast and boom.


mast-tip-28. Start rigging your boat!

The more time you spend on adding string for your rigging, the more realistic your sailboat will look. I like to start off by making holes at the corners and a few more on each side of the sailboats hull. Use a hole punch, and add holes around the edges of your hull. Try to space the holes as evenly as possible if you can.

9.Add a mast-tip!

Another great tip that will make rigging your boat easier is to carefully cut small slots at the top of your mast and on the ends of the boom and bowsprit.


10. Keep rigging!

Start out by tying a long piece of string to one of the corner holes you punched earlier. Next, run it up and over the mast, laying through your mast slots. Then pull it down tying it to the opposite corner. Continue this going from corner to corner, side to side and front to back. The most important thing is to use your imagination and be creative!

11.Make the sails!

Cut your sails from a plastic bag. Hold them in place against your mast to see if they will fit, and re-cut new ones or make corrections as needed. Do this until you have the shapes and sizes that you like for your sails.

12.Tape your sail!

Place a piece of tape, sticky side up on a flat surface. It may help to hold it in place by taping the ends down. Now carefully place your sail down the middle of your flipped tape, like so:


13.Finish the sails!

Now fold the tape carefully in half onto itself. Trim off any excess tape and repeat steps 11 and 12 until your sails are ready to install. You can tie them onto the boat by punching holes along the edges like you see here. (Or you can simply tape them onto your mast.)


14.Finishing touches!

VOILÀ! — a milk carton sailboat, made from trash! You can add flags and all kinds of cool stuff. It's your project, so be creative and always use your imagination! The most important thing is to have fun!