• 02.01.16

Your Desk Has Nothing On This Cubicle-Turned-Cardboard Castle

Drawbridge included.

After all the presents are unwrapped and New Year’s champagne is mopped up come the inevitable post-holiday blues. To beat the January slump, the British company Viking Direct gave its employees one assignment: decorate your desk. To some, that might mean tidying up loose papers or buying a plant, but a group of designers took it to the next level and built a cardboard fortress.


Working overnight and in secret, Viking Direct’s creative team collected cardboard left around their office. They made wall panels measuring about 3 feet wide and 6 feet tall and hot-glued them together. A few task chairs help support the 10-foot-tall walls. Not quite flying buttresses, but they did the trick. Instead of leaving the walls plain, the designers cut out around 500 cardboard squares to mimic the look of bricks and stuck those on the outside. No castle would be complete without a drawbridge, so the designers built one. The finishing touch? A fleet of red flags adorning the entrance.

Bet their boss had no idea a team-building exercise would escalate into a full-blown fort. Want to replicate it yourself? Viking kindly provided a guide here.

About the author

Diana Budds is a New York–based writer covering design and the built environment.