Children of all ages have come down with pirate fever.  They could have caught it from blockbuster movies or a popular new cartoon series.  However they contracted it, chances are it isn’t going away soon.  Encourage the pirate fun with an easy craft you and your children can do together.

This pirate treasure chest craft will have your kids yo-ho-ho-ing.  Homemade treasure chests have always lacked the special zing.  They have always fallen flat, literally.  Here is a fun way to make your chest look more authentic for kids of any age.

pirate treasure chest supplies

You will need:

  • An empty shoebox (preferably one with an attached lid)
  • Black paint
  • Black construction paper
  • Yellow construction paper
  • Scrap paper (we used packing paper, but newspaper will be great)
  • Craft paint roller (sponge trim roller)
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Glue

Homemade Treasure Chest: Painting Box

Have your child paint the box black.  Using the roller is quick and easy.  There is honestly a lot less mess, due to less need for dipping it into paint.  The roller applies a thin coat of paint that dries in minutes.  Using a paint brush would probably require hours of drying time.  You can always choose to cut and glue construction paper instead of painting, too.

Homemade Treasure Chest: Cutting Lines

While the paint dries, draw 1 inch wide lines on the yellow paper.  Have your child cut the strips of paper.

Homemade Treasure Chest: Gluing Stripes

Draw two lines on a sheet of black construction paper about 1/4th of the paper width from each side going up.  Your child can squeeze a bead of glue along the lines and then place yellow strips on the glue.

Homemade Treasure Chest: Putting in Filling

Crumple up your scrap paper and place it on the lid of the box.

Homemade Treasure Chest: Taping the Top

Take your piece of black construction paper (that has the yellow stripes glued on) and tape it to the lid of your box.  Use transparent tape to affix the long side of the paper to the long side of the box.  Place your paper over the crumpled scrap paper and tape the other long side to the other long side of the lid.  Trim off any access from the short side ends.

Homemade Treasure Chest: Tape to Lid Bottom

Cut two rectangles out of black construction paper about the same length as the short side of your box.  Open your lid and tape the rectangles to the bottom at the very edge.  When you close the lid it almost looks like your box has airplane wings.  Take those “wings” and fold them up against the rounded part of the lid.

Homemade Treasure Chest: Making Sides

Tape or glue the rectangle side to the edge of the rounded top.  Your sides should look like the above picture.  Trim the excess by cutting along the rounded seam.

Homemade Treasure Chest: Finishing Touches

Have your child squeeze lines of glue on the front of the box that line up with the yellow stripes on the top.  Place the two more yellow strips on the glue.  Repeat this step for the back of the box, too.

Homemade Treasure Chest

Now you have a homemade treasure chest that actually looks like a treasure chest.  Fill it up with treasures and be on the look out for thieving bandits and rival pirates.  Arrr, Matey!