Paper Crafts, Recycle, Reuse, Repurpose

Great Homemade Gift Bags and even better Family memories

I am a travel agent by day and wanted to do a little goodie bag for clients for Halloween. I have hordes of left over old brochures, so boom, the two came together! There was a lot of trial and error on these, but we think we have come up with a workable method and were very happy with the results, as were the clients! ~Mia~

gift bag

When Mia called about this idea for a craft I was all ready to go! We called Mimi, our lifetime partner in crime (also known as our middle sister) and agreed to meet at Mom and Dad’s house for a Sunday afternoon of group crafting and general family fun.

Our Supply List:

  • Paper/brochures/magazines/cardstock
  • Scissors
  • Paper cutter
  • Elmer’s glue
  • Glue sticks
  • Clear tape
  • Box for form*
  • Scrap cardboard for inside bottom
  • Ribbon (we used the fabric type instead of the paper type)


gift bag 04

We chose two different brochures and decided to use the front and back covers.

Step 1: Since both brochures utilized glued binding, we had to carefully remove the front and back covers.

Step 2: Carefully trim any ragged edges off the sheets.

Step 3: Attach the two sheets together using the glue stick with a small overlap (less than 1/2″), enough to keep the sheets together, yet not so much that the entire photograph looks off. This is a judgement call that depends on each person. The good news is that this seam will be on the side of the bag and not a major focal point.

Tip: Add tape (on backside) as needed to strengthen the seam. Allow glue to dry completely before continuing. We were assembling several bags, so we continued to assemble all the pages before continuing with one. This seemed to be long enough.

Step 4: Choose a box to use for your form based on the size of the bag you want. We had to choose based on the brochures we used but you could design around the size you want, by attaching more sheets.


gift bag 32
Step 5: Choose the top of your bag and fold over by 1” to create a clean crease. Glue the top flap with a glue stick.











gift bag 01
Step 6: Lay the box onto the flat paper and locate the bottom crease area, as seen in the photograph below. Crease the fold, but do not glue it down.














Step 7: Wrap your pages around your box and match the seam where you want so that the picture looks complete. Use glue stick to attach them together and add tape for strength. Fold the bottom of the bag like you would if you were wrapping a present. We used tape to seal the bottom.


Step 8: After you are happy with the shape of the bag, remove the box from the inside and make any adjustments needed.

Step 9: Cut cardboard the size of the bottom of the bag and glue it inside the bottom of the bag for strength and added stability.

Step 10: Use a one hole punch to create two holes on both sides of the top for your string/handles.

Step 11: We used two types of ribbon. One that was smaller and a wider one (used what we had on hand!). We preferred the larger for the look but the smaller ribbon is much easier to work with! You can either tie a knot in each end that goes into the hole as we show here or you can tie a knot with both strings inside the bag. We did both.


We were very pleased with the outcome. Not only had we created a totally appropriate, homemade gift bag for Mia’s travel clients but we had an amazing afternoon crafting together and laughing and catching up on our daily lives. Mom sat at the dining room table with us and shared in the together time. While Dad does not usually join us for such gatherings he did keep popping in and out of the dining room and when it was all over he told me it was the happiest he had been in years listening to his girls giggling and chattering just like when they were kids. He asked if we could do this every Sunday!  Well, maybe we can find something! Who knew that a few hours sharing a craft would turn into so much more?


Decor, Party, Shower Ideas

Baby Shower Centerpiece

So much more than a cardboard stork and a balloon that will lose helium in a day or two, this lovely Centerpiece would be a great shower decoration that could be given to the mother, and then adorn the families table. What a great way to let a new mom know you care about the new addition!

Supplies Needed:

  • 1 – 9” Styrofoam Circle
  • 2 rolls 1.5” Baby Ribbon (Any color) (144 inches/4 yards)
  • 1 – Pack Baby Blocks
  • Pins
  • 3″ Pillar Candle


Step 1 – Cut ribbon in 4” pieces. The ribbon in the picture is wired ribbon.

Step 2 – Bend ribbon into loop with shiny side out and secure to wreath using pin as shown in picture.

Step 3 – Continue until wreath has reached desired fullness level.

Step 4 – Add BABY blocks with hot glue.

Step 5 – Place centerpiece on table and insert candle into middle of centerpiece.