Quick and Easy Gift Bag – Photo Tutorial

As promised, this is a quick and easy gift bag tutorial to help with ideas for my challenge in the Creative Embellishments online Birthday Crop in their Facebook Fan group.  This base template is highly adaptable to make a variety of sizes and designs. I’ll mention a few variations at the end of the tutorial. The measurements I used for this base results in a bag that is 5 ¾” long x 2″ wide x 5″ tall, with sides that are 3 1/8″ high. I used plain white cardstock for this tutorial so I could draw the score lines and write directly on the template. When selecting patterned paper for this project, keep in mind that the paper will wrap around to the back, so you’ll want to use a design that is not directional/direction specific (otherwise, if the front is face up, the back will be upside down).

Start out with 12″ x 12″ paper.

Score your page at 3 1/8″ and 8 7/8″ (which is 3 1/8″ in from each side) as indicated by the black vertical lines.


Rotate your paper 90° and score at 5″ and 7″ as indicated by the purple lines. These will be your horizontal lines once you straighten the page again.


Fold in on all 4 score lines.


You’re going to create a 45° fold where I’ve indicated with a line in the photo. You do not need to score this. You will create this fold starting at the corner where I’ve written 45° by bringing the horizontal scored line up to meet the vertical fold line. Doing this will automatically create a 45° angle.


This is what it looks like when you bring the horizontal fold line up diagonally to meet the vertical fold line on the left. Press that new 45° fold firmly to create a crisp line.


Do the same on the right side, then rotate it upside down and do the same on the other end.



You can see the new diagonal fold lines in this photo (my pen lines are on the other side. Make sure all your creases are in place before the next step. Once you have your fold lines complete, apply your adhesive where shown in this photo, going from the corners of the paper to where it meets the diagonal line. You can use a tape runner, double sided tape, glue, etc. Just do one side at a time, folding on the 2 vertical creases.


The 2 flaps should overlap slightly and you should be able to smooth it flat. I’ve puckered up the center in the photo to show that the center is not glued down. The adhesive is only going from the diagonal folds to ends.


Apply adhesive as shown in the photo. It should run along the horizontal fold lines, in triangle shaped sections created by the diagonal folds.


Bring the horizontal folds up diagonally to meet the vertical folds as you did before, but adhere them this time.


You should end up with a rectangular base that stands up on its own. Tuck in the sides and pinch lightly (as shown in the photo) to get the expandable sides that look best if you want to seal the top of the bag. You can either staple it shut, or punch holes and add ribbon to tie it. Leave the sides as they are if you want to punch holes near the top and and handles.

This is the first one I ever made (8 years ago or so?)…

As you can see, for that one, I tucked in the sides and pinched it to create the triangle sides so it closed smoothly when sealed by tying it with a bit of ribbon. You could add handles rather than sealing it by using the same holes and just adding the ribbon differently.


This is one I made more recently:

This one was for my daughter and I was just leaving her a gift on her desk for Valentine’s Day, so I didn’t want handles and I didn’t want to seal it either. I decided to fold the top flaps in a little over an inch to shorten the overall height.

I hope you found this tutorial helpful!

Play along with my challenge (either make a package or alter one! So either take an empty container and alter it or make an envelope box, gift bag, etc.) in the Creative Embellishments Birthday Crop for a chance to win this amazing prize:


There are a total of 8 mini challenges available and 8 incredible prizes (FOUR $30 gift vouchers and 4 prize packs):


Use of CE products is not required in order to enter and win the challenges, but if you do use CE products, you can also enter your project to win this gorgeous prize pack:


For full details, join the fb group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1985585078160468/ and click “going” on the event to view all the challenges. Entries are due by midnight ET Sept 17th (12 am ET Sept 18th).


Creative Embellishments online Birthday Crop

Creative Embellishments just turned 5 and to celebrate, they’re hosting a HUGE online Birthday Crop filled with 8 mini challenges and 9 amazing prizes!!! Be sure to join their fan group on Facebook and click “going” on the event in order to play along and enter to win some goodies! All the challenges begin today, September 15th at 9 am ET and entries must be posted by midnight on Monday, September 17 (which is technically September 18th at 12 am ET). You do NOT need to use CE products on your projects to enter and win prizes! However, for those who do use CE products on their entries, there’s a BONUS PRIZE opportunity, so you have 2 chances to win with each project you create using CE products! 🙂

I’m one of the volunteers hosting a challenge this weekend and since birthdays usually come with presents, gift cards, cards, etc., I’d like you to either make a package or alter one! So either take an empty container and alter it or make an envelope box, gift bag, etc. For my examples, I altered/repurposed 2 empty boxes. One was the box my Webster’s Page Pocket TN came in and the other is a square jewelry gift box. Here’s how they turned out:


I started out by applying Finnabair/Prima crackle texture paste and allowed it to air dry. Then used Lindy’s Stamp Gang color shots to bring out the crackle pattern that emerged and give it more color and texture. Next I added bits of Webster’s Pages netting to each box. For the larger box, I added CE chipboard feathers that I altered with gesso and the same LSG color shots I’d used for the base, and a wood veneer heart from the CE Lovers Hearts Set. I finished it off by adding some skeleton leaves and flowers and a flair button from the Birds of a…. set.

A couple of close ups:



For the smaller box, I applied some gesso to one of the corners from the Steampunk Corner Set and snipped off the smallest 2 gears on both sides to better suit my box’s size and layered the cut off bits between the remaining 3 larger gears on the piece. I then topped this one off with a pair of flowers, a couple of metal leaves and layered metal flowers. Then finished it with a blue cameo tucked into the space created they layered elements.

Close ups of the smaller box:



One winner will be selected from all the entries on my challenge to receive this prize pack:


Here are the other prizes that will be awarded for the challenges during the crop (there are FOUR $30 gift vouchers that will be given out)…

IF you do use CE product on your entry projects, you can also enter to win this BONUS PRIZE:


I hope you enjoyed my examples for the challenge! To help give you more ideas, I’ll be posting photo tutorials on how to make an envelope box for A2 sized cards later today and a quick and easy gift bag base tomorrow. 🙂

Some important links:

CE store: https://creativeembellishments.com/

CE fan group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1985585078160468/