Make Mooncake Boxes for Mid-Autumn Festival

images of three handmade paper boxes that look like Chinese mooncakes

Mooncakes are a rich Chinese pastry that you traditionally eat to celebrate the Mid-Autumn Festival. Their round shape represents the roundness and fullness of the moon. This festival falls on the 15th day of the 8th month on the lunar calendar and is a time to celebrate the rice harvest and gather with loved ones. Learn how to make a festive paper box that looks just like a delicious mooncake. Hide a message or a treat inside and give them out to friends and family.


image of supplies needed to make a paper mooncake box: printable template, scissors, glue stick, white glue, mod podge, paint brush, and file folder
  • Printout the mooncake art PDF
  • Manila file folder
  • Scissors
  • Glue brush
  • Glue: depending on how thick your printout is you will need some combo of glue stick, white glue, or Mod Podge

How to Make a Paper Mooncake Box

  1. Rough-cut around the three boxes. Only cut in the white paper areas. You should have three boxes that each have two lids with a band in the center.
  2. Glue the pieces to the file folder. Let dry.image of how to make a paper mooncake box with paper templates glued on a file folder
  3. Cut up to the brown edge of the cookie and around the blue tabs. Cut the three dots.image of paper cut outs for a DIY paper mooncake box
  4. Fold the tabs under. Bend the band into a circle so it fits just inside the scallops of the bottom. Overlap the ends by approximately 3/8 inch. Put a dot of glue on the end and pinch it until it is dry and stays closed.images of a paper mooncake box being assembled
  5. Put a dot of glue on the blue side of each tab and press onto the bottom of the cookie. While the tabs are still wet, glue the back of the blue dot and insert it into the center, pressing it down over the tabs. Adjust the ring and tabs so everything is a nice round circle. Let dry.image of the inside of a paper mooncake box
  6. Fold the tab on the lid at the edge of the cookie and again at the line. Tuck it under the band to close the box
image of 3 paper boxes that look like Chinese mooncakes

Cleo Papanikolas is a painter, author, and educator. Her daily practice classes on Creativebug are Painting Repeat Patterns By Hand: A Daily Practice and Learn to Paint with Gouache: A Daily Practice in Questions and Answers . You can find more of her printable crafts on her website, and while you are there, take a look at her Patreon scarf club.