Friday, December 21, 2012

Cloth Gift Bag

Skill Level: Beginner
Skills Attained: Double-Turned Hem
  • Sewing Machine
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Fabric (your desired size, depending on the size of your gift)
  • Coordinating thread
  • (2) - 12" satin ribbons
Rather than wrapping your gifts in traditional wrapping paper -- or using those recycled gift bags from last year, perhaps you would like to spruce your gift up by making a home-made cloth gift bag. This project is simple and quick, so you may still have time to squeeze it in before Christmas!

You can make the gift bag any size that you desire depending on the gift going into the bag. The instructions below are for a gift bag used to "wrap" a wine bottle.

Supplies: 12" x 13" piece
of fabric and (2) - 12" strands
of satin ribbon

First, cut out your material the desired size. (For the wine bottle, I cut the fabric 12" x 13".) To limit the number of seams you will need to sew, I use one piece of fabric and simply fold it over, so you only have to sew the bottom and one side. However, you can certainly cut out two pieces of equal size and sew three sides of the fabric.

Once the fabric is cut, sew a double-turned hem along the opening of the bag. Using the iron, press the fabric approximately 1/2 inch along the top edge. Then, fold the fabric over again another 1/2 inch and press with the iron. Pin the hem in place and sew along the edge of the fold. (Refer to the "Linen Napkin" post for more detailed instructions on a double-turned hem.)

Iron a double-turned hem along the
top edge of the bag.

After the hem is sewn, fold the fabric in half so the right-sides are together (or if you have two separate pieces of fabric, place the pieces right-sides together). Pin the fabric in place along the bottom and side edge.

Bag pinned
right-sides together
Before we sew the bag together, we need to insert the ribbon. Take the two pieces of ribbon and insert it approximately 3 inches below the top edge with the hem. (You can certainly place the ribbon higher or lower along the edge depending on the gift you will be placing in the bag.) The long part of the ribbon should be "inside" the bag (or in between the two "right-sides" of the fabric). You will only have a small tail hanging over the pinned edge.

Sew along the outside edge using a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Be sure not to sew the opening shut where you have just sewn the double hem. Before you turn the bag right-side out, clip the corners to avoid bunching. 

Clip the corners to avoid the fabric from
bunching when turned right-side out.

Turn the bag right-side out and press. You have made a home-made cloth gift bag your friends and relatives are sure to appreciate!

May you feel God's love through His ultimate Christmas gift:  His Son, Jesus. Merry Christmas! 

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