Holiday Gift Bags

When I started making cloth gift bags earlier this month I felt like I was so ahead on Christmas. I was actually at the wrapping stage, which meant I’d already completed the buying – which is something I usually am still doing the day before Christmas. Now that a few days have passed I have realised that even though I have done most of my shopping, I haven’t done anything else. We put up the advent calendar, but the rest of our Christmas stuff is still sitting in boxes in the living room. Still, I feel I should celebrate my small successes – not only have I got {most} of my shopping done, I have also created one Christmas craft!
Cloth bags are super easy to make. I used some left over Christmas fabric from my mother-in-law and another piece that I had purchased at the thrift store, plus some cheap ribbon I bought so they also cost me less than buying paper bags.

bag how to

1. Cut your fabric into different sized rectangles. Its easier if you have a fold at the bottom. Make sure you leave 1/4″ sewing allowance on the sides, plus 2″-3″ at the top.

2. Fold over all the edges approximately 1/4″ towards the inside. I iron the fold to hold it in place. Hem all the way around the bag.

3. With the wrong side of the fabric facing you, fold the top down on both sides approximately 3″. Straight stitch across the top and the bottom of the fold to create a sleeve at the top of each side of the bag.

4. Place the right side (outsides) of the bag together and straight stitch around, leaving space where you sewed the sleeve in Step 3. This should leave you with a bag – turn it right side out.

5. Using a safety-pin, thread a pieces of ribbon into the sleeve to create a drawstring. I used two pieces of ribbon that looped around to come out at opposite sides of the bag to make it stay closed easier. Tie off the ribbon and you’ve got a bag.

I haven’t finished them all, I’m sewing as I need to, but I have enough now for most of what I need to wrap. I plan to sew the rest once I’m on Christmas break (two weeks of school to go!) so that we’ve got lots for next year too.

holiday bags

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