Monday, February 27, 2012

Quick Gift Bag MakeOver

I will begin with….a warning….a heads up….an apology…..the ribbons are a little out of control.  Like one's bangs when you just can't get to the salon.  Yes, the ribbons are covering the majority of the design and I'm sorry.   I did cut them shorter after my 13-year-old complained-they were for her friends so I figured her opinion counted.

I decided to post this project anyway because the design is somewhat irrelevant.  What I want you to take from this is how easy it is buy a cheap, plain bag and jazz it up with only a few minutes a minimal supplies. First the offensive picture:
I started with plain brown gift bags.  These have handles made from grosgrain ribbon but you could use a any variety of gift bag- those with twin handles would work just as well and even a plain brown shopping bag- the cheap kind- would work.  You could add handles made from ribbons or fold the top closed, staple it, and cover the staple with a bow.  There are so many ways to do this….  I bought the two bags at Target.  They originally had the pink grosgrain ribbon as a handle and threaded through to become a bow in the front.  I untied the bow portion and got rid of it…the ribbon was stiff and bent and ugly- you can see a piece of it still is a little wonky in the bottom bag on the far left of the bow.  I could ave ironed it or even steamed it I supposed but I love seam binding and the way it lays. I just think it makes a prettier bow for something like this.  

While the bag was folded flat I added a bunch of rub ons.  I like to cut them up to fit my project rather than use them as they come.  The rub ons I used are from Basic Grey.  They are from collections long since retired but are available by the gazillion on Ebay (I've posted 3 of my favorites here…I have them in white and black and I love and use both colors) .  Rub ons are perfect for those of us who have no drawing skills.  While it is true that you could use rubber stamps to achieve the same design, I like the opacity and sharp lines I get from rub ons.  To achieve anywhere near the same precision from rubber stamps requires the use of embossing powder- and yes I do that too.  In the end I choose to go the rub on route.  I love how quickly I can put achieve a beautiful design using rub ons; I prefer to cut them up, turn things around, flip it all up, and use only part but not all of the design.  If you have never used a rub on or if you have only used words give this technique a try...
play around...have fun.  If you make a mess or just don't like the end product... the bad news is rub ons  don't come off, but the good news is it is simple to cover your mistake.  Simply use a piece of cardstock to cover the offensive area and then act like you always intended to use cardstock on the piece and isn't it pretty?

I used stickers to write the names of the recipient and added some rhinestones to jazz it all up a bit.  You know I need glitter or rhinestones or something blingy before I called it "done".   The last thing I added was the aforementioned unruly ribbons.  I used 2 colors of pink seam binding and made big loopy sloppy bows with lots of tails.  As I mentioned the tails got a good trimming before the bags were taken to the party. 



  1. Nice post
    Good blog
    I am following your blog with GFC
    Now follow back my blog with GFC too


I love reading your comments...