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Easy DIY Magazine Holders From Old Cereal Boxes That Look Stylish

Inside: Make stylish storage with DIY magazine holders from upcycled cereal boxes and old road maps.

My sister-in-law and I have given each other the same Christmas present for the last 20 years: a magazine subscription. It’s a beautiful gift that lasts all year. I love getting my favourite interiors magazine through the letterbox every month.

I’m loathed to spend money on new magazine holders when I can make them for free from repurposed materials. All you need are some old cereal boxes or other cardboard of a similar size and paper or paint to decorate them.

As a family, we have wanderlust and love to travel. Many of my decor choices involve decorating and crafting with maps. My study is travel themed with a map pin board, map mason jars and map artwork. So it was inevitable that I covered my DIY magazine holders in maps to fit right in.

It’s hard to believe these stylish magazine holders were once cereal boxes. The boxes have been reinforced with cardboard to make them pretty sturdy. The following is an easy step-by-step tutorial with some excellent suggestions for other things you can do with magazine holders at the end.

(There is a printable how-to card for this craft at the end of the post.)

What You Need

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  • Large cereal boxes or similar, if using them for specific magazines, check that they are big enough to fit.
  • Strong scrap cardboard for reinforcement
  • Old road maps
  • Scissors, pen ruler
  • Rotary cutter and mat (optional)
  • Paper glue and repositionable spray mount
  • Metal index box label holders
empty ceral boxes and old road maps

How To Make Repurposed Magazine Holders

Step 1: First, carefully lift the cereal box flaps glued down and open the box out into one flat piece. Then on the inside of the cardboard box, draw a line with a ruler to cut the left top corner away. I started the ruler 9cm from the bottom and 1.5cm in from the center spine.

Cutting marks on cereal box

Step 2: Cut the cardboard box’s corners following the marked lines.

Cutting the box

Step 3: Open up the road map you will use and lay the cutout cereal box on top. Then cut around it, leaving a 1cm margin so the map will overlap the edges.

Top Tip: I positioned the cardboard to ensure I included the places dear to me on the map.

Laying cradboard on the map
Covering cereal box cut out with maps

Step 4: Next, spray the cereal box with the spray mount outside and stick the map to it. Then fold the edges of the map over the edge of the box and stick them down with tacky glue. You may need to use some clips to keep the paper in place as the glue dries.

Map covered cereal box

Step 5: Next, fold and glue the map-covered cardboard back into it’s original box shape. To strengthen the DIY magazine boxes, I added two cardboard inserts. These were cut from stiff cardboard to fit the box’s base and spine. I just used double-sided sticky tapes to secure them.

Putting in inserts

Step 6: Finally, I added some metal label tags to finish off the magazine holders and make them look more stylish. Simply screw them into the cardboard with tiny screws. Depending on how you plan to use the folders, fasten the tags to the spine or the front.

Adding label tags to diy magazine holders

These finished magazine holders are handy and look good on the shelves in my home study. The vintage metal label tags go well with the road maps and give the storage boxes a sophisticated look.

DIY Magazine holders with maps

If maps aren’t your thing, you can use other patterned paper to cover your boxes. Leftover wallpaper samples would be a good choice, as well as a gift wrap. You can then make storage boxes to match your decor.

DIY Magazine holders with maps
DIY map magazine stroage boxes

Other Uses For Magazine Storage Boxes

These upcycled magazine holders are handy for magazine storage and so much more. I’m going to make some for my craft room to store my computer craft papers and in the kitchen to store all my appliance instruction manuals and guarantees.

Here are some more creative ways people use magazine holders.

  1. Gift wrapping station – use one box for bows, one for gift wrap and another for paper gift bags.
  2. Yarn storage – store balls of yarn in each box and sort them by colour.
  3. Kitchen roll storage – Use the boxes to hold kitchen foil, cling film and parchment paper rolls.
  4. Cutting board organizer
  5. Tupperware lid storage
  6. Toilet roll holder – Store extra toilet rolls in the boxes
  7. Fit flop holder – You can fit a few pairs of fit flops in each holder
  8. Hair tools – Use an organizer to keep hair brushes, curling tongs and hair straighteners in the same place.
Classy upcycled DIY magazine holder

In addition to making these upcycled magazine holders as stylish storage for my archived magazines, I have made a trendy denim magazine rack for the living room to hold the magazines I’m currently reading.

Don’t forget to check out my many other upcycled storage solutions, from the shoebox suitcase, denim boxes, pocket wall organizers and map tins.

Another thing you can make with old cereal boxes is this gorgeous mushroom paper mache tray.

How To Make Stylish Magazine Holders

DIY Stylish Magazine Holders

Give your old magazines a classy home with these DIY magazine holders. They are made from upcycled cereal boxes and repurposed old road maps with the addition of vintage label holders to give them a classy look.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Active Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Difficulty Easy
Estimated Cost $1


  • Large empty cereal boxes
  • Old road maps
  • Spray mount glue and tacky paper glue
  • Vintage index metal label tags


  • Scissors
  • Pen & Ruler
  • Screw driver


  1. Open out the cereal box and cut off the top flaps.
  2. Next, mark the corner of the boxes on a diagonal from the top to 9cm from the bottom with a ruler and pen (see diagram). Cutting marks on cereal box
  3. Cut away the marked corners with scissors.
  4. Then, place the cut box onto the road maps and cut around, so there is enough map to cover the box with a 1cm margin. You might want to consider using a map of somewhere precious to you. Covering cereal box cut out with maps
  5. Next, using the spray mount, glue the map to the front of the cereal boxes, folding the extra map over the edges and sticking it to the back of the box.
  6. Then, fold and glue the cardboard back into a box.
  7. Finish off by screwing in the vintage metal label tags to either the front or spine of the magazine holder.

Donna via Funky Junk

Friday 16th of September 2022

I'll never look at another retail file folder holder again because CEREAL BOXES are the answer! Genius and these turned out gorgeous, wrapped with maps of all things!

Claire Armstrong

Friday 16th of September 2022

Thank you, Donna. I try to save money by repurposing whenever possible even cereal boxes 😊


Thursday 15th of September 2022

How fun! This would be great for my kid's school notebooks.

Claire Armstrong

Friday 16th of September 2022

Thank you, that's a great use for them.

JoAn Damron

Wednesday 14th of September 2022

Thanks for sharing. I have made these by cutting down kitty litter boxes, spray painting them black, and painting one stroke roses on them. I store music books in them. I will try cereal boxes again, now that I see your method of reinforcing the thin cardboard. Very pretty and love DIY recycling!

Claire Armstrong

Thursday 15th of September 2022

Thank you, kitty litter boxes sound like a good choice too. Love how you decorate them with a rose.


Wednesday 14th of September 2022

Those look amazing! I've always wanted to try this. Thanks for sharing at Thursday Favorite Things.

Claire Armstrong

Wednesday 14th of September 2022

You should give it a go, they are very easy to make. Thank you.


Wednesday 7th of September 2022

I haven't read a real paper magazine in years, but I love the idea of doing something similar for all those Tupperware lids that seem to appear out of nowhere.

Claire Armstrong

Wednesday 7th of September 2022

Yeah, I have a draw full of Tupperware lids and no bottoms to match!

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