DIY Cardboard Mini Market For Your Pet

DIY Cardboard Mini Market For Your Pet

I've always had an obsession with miniatures. Actually, both mini versions of everyday things AND mega versions too. There’s something so delightful about them and I love how they distort our vision of reality for a moment in time. So when Harris Farm Markets asked me to create a playful project using their delivery boxes I thought it would be fun to make something mini for the number 1 most important mini in my life, my cat Tina 🤣.

Want to give this project a go? Feel free to personalise your market stall in any way you like. Decorate the outside with markers or paint, make as many different kinds of fruit and veg as you like, and use your imagination to make it your own. Use a bigger or smaller box to cater for the size of your pet. Kids want to get in on the fun? Make this for them instead! 

You Will Need

Don’t have something on this list? It’s all good -  I encourage you to make do with materials you’ve already got for this project. Simply swap them out for something similar that you have on hand at home.

  • An empty cardboard box (I used 2 Harris Farm boxes for this project - one for the market stall and one to cut out the Harris Farm logo)
  • Sticky tape
  • Double-sided tape
  • Hot glue gun
  • Modelling clay
  • Assorted sheets of green paper and/or cardstock
  • Extra paper (black and or white)
  • Markers
  • Red and white paint
  • Yarn or thin rope
  • Wire
  • Pliers
  • Scissors or cutting knife
  • Ruler
  • Paintbrush or roller
  • Pencil

Build your market stall

Step 1
Cover both the inside and the outside of your box using white paint. If you don’t have any paint you could cover it in white paper, or leave as is.

Step 2
Cut the top off your box, leaving the top side open so your pet can get in and out. Seal up your box using sticky tape. 

Step 3
Cut a window in the side of your box, leaving the bottom edge uncut so it forms a ledge for your mini market stall. You can trim this down to be narrower if you like.

Step 4
Using some of the cardboard offcuts, cut 2 thin strips with angled ends. Use a hot glue gun to affix these under the window ledge to hold it in place. If you don’t have a hot glue gun, you can either use quick-dry craft glue, or sticky tape instead.

Step 5
Grab another piece of scrap cardboard - preferably one with a fold already made in it (which you should have from when you cut the top off the box). Trim it to fit the roof of your market stall, then cut a scalloped edge along one side. This will become an awning for your market stall.

Step 6
Paint red stripes across the top of the awning.

Step 7
Use glue or sticky tape to affix the awning to the top of the market stall, leaving a gap at the back so your pet can get in.

Step 8
If you’re using a Harris Farm box, cut out the Harris Farm logo from the second box to use as a sign for your mini market. Attach it to the front of the awning using glue or sticky tape. Alternatively, you can design your own logo

Create some fruit and veg

Lettuce: Crumple up some green paper to create texture. From this paper cut out a bunch of lettuce leaves. Scrunch some scrap paper into a ball, then use double-sided sticky tape or glue to stick the leaves around it to form a little lettuce. Use a green marker to add some texture and shading to the leaves if you wish.


Carrots: Use modelling clay to sculpt some carrots. Use the edge of a ruler or a piece of wire to make some horizontal grooves in each carrot. To create a carrot top, cut a strip of fringe from green paper and roll it around a small piece of wire, securing it in place with double-sided sticky tape or glue. Push the wire into the top of the carrot.

Bananas and Apples:
Use modelling clay to sculpt some tiny apples and bananas. For the apples, cut tiny leaves and stick them to pieces of wire using tape, then push them into the top of each apple.

Produce boxes:
Use some scrap cardboard to build little produce boxes for your fruit and veg. Glue or tape 4 thin strips together to form the box frame. Then, measure and cut a rectangular piece of cardboard to fit onto the bottom and secure with glue. Glue some small pieces of yarn to each side for handles. If you don’t have yarn you could use small strips of paper, or leave as is.


Shopping Basket: Cut 2 identical small rectangles from green paper or card. Then, cut 14 thin strips, all the same length. Use double-sided sticky tape or glue to affix the strips all the way around one rectangle. Then, stick the second rectangle on top. Fold up each little strip to form a basket shape. Cut a long thin strip and stick it all the way around the top of the basket. Finally, add some handles made from 2 more thin strips.

Sandwich Board:
Create a sandwich board for your mini market using a long rectangle of scrap cardboard folded in half. You can cut little legs into each end of the rectangle if you wish. Hold the sandwich board together using 2 pieces of yarn stuck onto the inside.Cut a rectangle from black or white paper that fits onto the front of your sandwich board. Use a marker to draw a little sign, then attach this to the board with glue or double-sided tape.

It’s shopping time!

If your pet is anything like my cat Tina, they’ll be stoked to jump inside and explore their new mini market. But if they’re not you can always place a couple of treats or snacks inside to tempt them to get in. Make sure you’ve got your camera handy to quickly snap some shots of the cuteness before your pet jumps out again! If you try your hand at this DIY project make sure to tag me @kitiyapalaskas if you post it on Instagram - I’d love to see what you make!

This project was sponsored by Harris Farm Markets. All ideas and opinions are my own.


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

You may also like

  • How to foster great creative collaborations

    How to foster great creative collaborations

    I team up with designers and artists Andrew and Chris Yee to share our insights on what makes a great creative collaboration
  • 3 tips for launching your freelance design career

    3 tips for launching your freelance design career

    I team up with designer and illustrator Emma Sjaan Beukers to share our insights and tips on entering the world of freelance design.
  • How to be an analog designer in a digital world

    How to be an analog designer in a digital world

    How can analog designers use technology to enhance their creativity? The secret is in embracing both worlds. Here’s how I do it.
  • Working sustainably in everything we do.

  • Designed with love in Naarm/ Melbourne.

  • Proudly female owned and operated.