Holiday craft: Easy-to-make gift bags

These simple, shimmery gift bags wrap up little luxuries in style.

By Emily Gillette

How to make a holiday gift bag

Unless you are a one-year-old, you don't really care about the gift wrapping, which often ends up in the landfill. This year, take a few minutes to sew up a few gift bags and wrap up little luxuries in style. The best part? Your friends and family can reuse them for years to come.

You will need:
Fabric (you determine the type and size you would like to use)
Scissors
Needle
Thread
Straight pins
Ribbon or cord
Bodkin or large safety pin

Here's how to sew them:
Determine the desired width and length of your bag, then calculate fabric total width (width + 2 cm/3/4 in) x total length ([length x 2] + 14 cm/5-1/2 in); from shiny brocade or damask, chiffon, silk or taffeta, cut a piece having total dimensions.

With right sides together, fold in half so short (top) edges are even; using 1 cm (3/8 in) seam allowance, stitch each side edge (if desired, machine-zigzag seam allowance to bind). Turn right side out.

Press under 1 cm then 2 cm around top edge and pin; edgestitch along first fold, then stitch another seam line 1 cm up from the first, to form casing. Approx 6 mm (1/4 in) from each side seam and parallel to it, carefully cut a small slit through outer layer of casing at each side of seam.

Cut 2 lengths of ribbon or cord, each 4 x total width; using bodkin or large safety pin, thread 1 length into slit at left-hand side of 1 seam, clockwise around entire casing and out slit at other side of same seam. At other side seam, repeat process.

If desired, finish cord ends with iron-on appliqués, thread through beads or tassels, or decoratively tie or trim.

Try these easy-sew gift bags too!

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This article is featured on Festive holiday crafts for everyone