Arts and crafts

Process Art for Toddlers: Cardboard Birthday Cake

There’s no shortage of uses for cardboard in my life. I always like to steal a box or two out of the recycled bin for a new project. Fortunately, Pearl’s parents received three packages all gradually larger in size just in time to make her a birthday cake…that’s right. A cardboard birthday cake.

A couple of weeks ago Pearl turned two years old. It was so exciting to share her first birthday together. I love any excuse to buy my kids a present. Buying for kids you don’t know is really tough, but buying for kids you know really well is a piece of cake. Speaking of cake…this was really easy and could easily be replicated at your house. Just tape or super glue three boxes together and get out any odds and ends your little wants to glue onto the boxes to make their very own birthday cake, any day of the year.


The materials we used are:

  • washi tape
  • paper flowers
  • tissue squares
  • foam heart stickers

Pearl loves washi tape. There’s something very satisfying for kids about sticking tape onto things, then being able to rearrange and reapply it. I mean look at those layers.


These little paper flowers came in a box from Michael’s for about $4.99, which is not inexpensive for the thriftiest crafters, but I think they were worth it. The patterned flowers add a lot of youthful energy to any project.

Okay, sure, this little “cake” won’t be in the Louvre any time soon, but it’s such a sweet little project that gives Pearl optimal opportunity to work on fine motor skills, develop spatial reasoning and give her the pride in making something she designed all herself.

I love how process art projects leave all the decision making to her.  She decides when she’s done or when something needs more embellishment. She’s been slowly adding to the cardboard “cake” a little bit every few days, whenever she feels like decoratin’, as she says. I’m definitely writing a post soon that delves into all the awesome benefits of process art. But here are the visual benefits to sate you.


I loved the bohemian prints on the washi tape and the positive vibes, too. Some subtle self esteem building never hurt right? 😉


It’s a gorgeous day out. So time to put away the tape and get out there and get some sunshine. See ya next time!


2 thoughts on “Process Art for Toddlers: Cardboard Birthday Cake”

  1. I LOVE this idea. I’ll definitely have to use it for my son with his birthday coming up and my classroom. Seeing their Imaginations take off in such a beautiful way with process art is truly amazing. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

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