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Plastic card standimage © EM4
Stands for cardboard miniatures

Article updated: 2023.01.12

There are several games that use cardboard miniatures or cardboard scenery. If you have access to a printer, you can also create your own cardboard miniatures.

But then, these miniatures often won't stand in themselves (unless you create them specifically to include a stand).

Cardboard stands

You can fold paper miniatures in a way that it is able to stand on its own.

For this, you could include an empty space under the miniature, that you can fold sideways. Most of the time it won't be solid enough, so it's better to glue the sideways tabs on a card stand.

Sucker Punch Paper Figure from ZenseekerPaper miniature with a foldout stand
image © Zenseeker

The Cardboard Heroes from Steve Jackson Games shows a good solution for this. This way you don't even need to glue the stand, you can store them flat, and fold them for play.

Cardboard Heroes paper miniatures
image © Steve Jackson Games

If you have only one side of a stand, you can cut its base in half, and fold those in different directions. It won't be as balanced, but it could work.

Cardboard stands - Resources

Zen DIY Paper Miniatures Page: Tutorial article about creating your own paper miniatures, including your paper stands.

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Slotted stands

Slotted stands will require a bit more work but you can create scenic stands for several terrain, and just slide the paper miniature into the slot. For a slotted stand you'll need a solid stand, and two halves of a thicker material you glue on top of the stand. That way you'll get an opening, that you can use to add your cardboard miniature. For more stability you can include small tabs around the slot to hold the paper mini.

Cardboard stand with tabs added for stability
image © One Monk Miniatures

For slide-in slotted stands you'll need cardboard miniatures that has a bottom like a reverse T, and you'll need some unglued sliding space around the slot. If you don't understand how to do this, read the articles from sirrob01 and Reivaj.

Slotted stands - Resources

sirrob01: How to Base Paper Miniatures: Tutorial article about creating slotted stands.

sirrob01: How to Base Paper Miniatures – Part 2: Tutorial article about creating slotted stands.

Reivaj (for Cardboard Heroes): Removable Flat Base: Tutorial article about creating slide-in slotted stands.

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Binder clips

Using binder clips are a cheap alternative for use as stands. You just open them, slide the cardboard mini inside, and the clip will hold it. You may even remove the wires so it won't interfere.

If you fold out the wires, it could give more stability to your miniatures (although it might look a bit weird). If you still find it lacking, you can glue a weight into the insides of the binder or glue a flat cardboard under it.

Binder clipimage © ACCO

Binder clips

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Plastic card stands

Plastic card stands are made specifically for holding cards and cardboard miniatures. They are probably the best, even though not the cheapest solutions.

Plastic card stands - Resources

Rhannon (for Cardboard Warriors): Someone asked about minis plastic bases: Article that lists several kinds of plastic stands.

Plastic card standimage © EM4

Plastic card stands


Transparent plastic card stand
image © Gamco

Transparent plastic card stands

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Homemade alternatives

There are a couple of possibilites you can do yourself from household materials:

  • Cut a slot into the tops of bottle caps, then push the paper or cardboard stand into the slot.
  • For wider (2-3mm) cardboards you can use slottabases, or you could add padding to the base of the stand, so it won't slide out.

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Do you have further ideas for use as stands for cardboard miniatures? How do you like the listed stands? Tell your opinion in the comments!


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