If you don't have the right size gift bag on hand, create your own by recycling a box. These are much sturdier than gift bags and can be used over and over again.
Approximate Time: About 20 minutes
empty box, such as a cereal box
Trim the top flaps from your box. Wrap the box with gift wrap as you would a gift, leaving about two inches of paper at the open end of the box. Fold the excess paper to the inside of the box and tape to secure.
For the handles, punch two holes on opposite sides of box, thread ribbon through the holes and knot the ends.
You can even create a gift tag from leftover wrapping paper. Fold a piece of the paper in half, punch a hole in the corner, and thread it onto one of the ribbons before threading the ribbon through the hole.
Turn the sleeve of an old sweater into a personalized gift bag. Place it over a canning jar filled with homemade soup, layered cookie mix, or some homemade goodies and you'll have a warm and cozy gift for a friend or shut-in!
Approximate Time: About 30 minutes
needle and thread
26 inch length of ribbon
2 or 3 coordinating buttons
canning jar with lid
cardstock for tag
Cut about an 11 inch length of sleeve off of sweater (starting measuring at cuff and going up.)
Slide sleeve over jar with cuff at top of jar.
Use needle and thread to slip-stitch around cut edge at bottom. Pull thread tightly and knot to secure.
Remove sleeve from jar and set aside.
Fill jar with soup, layered cookie mix, or homemade treat of your choice.
Place lid on jar and slip sweater sleeve back over jar. Gather sleeve above lid and tie ribbon around top into a bow.
Cut a tag from cardstock and write a personal message on the tag, such as "Get Well Soon," or "Happy Birthday."
Dress a wedding gift in formal wear with this tuxedo-style bag, or use it for a special gift for that special man in your life.
Approximate Time: About 20 minutes
black gift bag
3/4 inch wide black satin ribbon
white card stock
3 small black buttons
Cut white card stock about 2/3 of the length and 2 inches shorter than the width of the gift bag.
On wrong side of the card stock, mark the center of one short edge and draw a line from each of the corners on the opposite end to the mark, forming a triangle. Cut along the lines.
Apply glue to the wrong side of the triangle along all edges. Attach paper to the front of the gift bag, centering it just below the handles.
Cut 4 pieces of ribbon that are the width of the gift bag. Glue 2 pieces of ribbon side-by-side to the front of the gift bag, so they are centered between the bottom point of the triangle and the bottom of the bag. Apply small amounts of glue to the cut edges of the ribbon to prevent fraying.
Center and glue another piece of ribbon on top of the affixed ribbon pieces to resemble a cummerbund.
Glue the last strip of ribbon to the bag about a half inch from top of triangle. Apply small amounts of glue to the cut edges of each side of the ribbon to prevent fraying.
To make the bow tie, cut a 7-inch length of ribbon. Glue ends together (forming a loop) and overlapping ends about 1/4 inch. Apply glue to center of the ribbon loop and pinch opposite sides together, creating two loops.
Cut a 2 1/2-inch length of ribbon and wrap it around the double loop bow and glue in place.
Glue bow to the bag, centering it over the ribbon near top of bag.
Glue the buttons below the bow, making sure to space them evenly apart.
This gift bag is made from a crispbread box, painted using a 99p test pot. For the handles I used twine/string. I filled it with homemade items; home grown and dried mint, and a lavender sachet. I used a letter stencil on some craft paper I had for a guide on the letters of the recipient's name, but magazine pages can be used and are very effective.
Take a 9x12 sheet of felt and cut it in half longways with decorative scissors (you can use straight cut scissors, too). Then fold in half short ways. Sew 1/4 inch seam with machine or by hand or glue side openings only, to close. Leave the top open. Makes a nice little gift bag. Decorate as desired. Let your imagination go wild :)
I put zipper plastic bags inside with 1 cup of flavored coffee creamer or chocolate mix and tie with covered elastic (in the holiday ribbon section at WalMart). I placed a sticker on the zipper bag with name of ingredients and directions for use. I then placed a sticker on the outside of the felt bag with the name of what was inside. Makes a cute stocking stuffer or small gift. Also, it is another idea for craft shows for the holidays. I make my own "gourmet" mixes to put inside.
Create your own gift bags using ordinary brown lunch bags, fabric, and fusible web. I cut out the words "Ho ho ho" from plaid fabric and fused them on a bag. On another, I cut out an angel that was pre-printed on the fabric and fused it to a bag. I also cut out a reindeer head and bow tie and fused them onto a bag and then added details using craft paint, moveable eyes, and a pom pom for the nose. You can even use white lunch bags; I created an elf on the white one. The possibilities are endless.
Keep the kids busy and have great, cheap gift bags. Get a pack of brown lunch bags at the dollar store and let the kids decorate them with markers, stencils, glitter-glue, whatever is on hand. Punch 2 holes in the top and thread a ribbon, yarn, or raffia thru and tie a bow. Custom gift wrap! As elaborate or simple as you like AND it keeps the kids very busy having fun!
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