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February 3, 2013

Tutorial - How to Make a Gift Bag Out of a Catalog or Magazine

Hi again! Today I want to show you how to make a gift bag out of a catalog or a magazine. I drew the basic idea from this tutorial here about making gift bags out of newspaper. There are tons of tutorials on the interwebs for the newspaper kind. Today I'm going to make them out of Thirty-One catalogs.

 
As I mentioned in my profile, I am an Independent Consultant with Thirty-One Gifts and we have catalogs for each season. I always want to find new ways to use my old catalogs because it would be such a shame to waste them. One idea is to drop them off at the doctor's or dentist's office waiting rooms so that they are still working for you even after they are expired. I have done that before, but I thought this was a neat idea too. You can use them for a small hostess gift and card to give to your hostesses at your parties. You could also use them for giveaways. OR you could just use them anytime you need a small gift bag for any purpose and then you have a gift bag that advertises your business for you on the side!

Ok here we go. Materials you will need:

  • Thirty-One catalog (you can also use a regular magazine)
  • Staple remover
  • Measuring tape or ruler
  • Glue stick
  • Hole punch
  • Ribbon of some sort
The first thing you'll need to do is remove the staples from the middle of the catalog so that you can separate the pages.  

Separate out the page you want to use and place the side that you would like to show on the outside of the bag face down.
I want the page that says "Accessory Bags" at the top to be on the outside of the bag so I am placing it face down on the table. 
Next you'll need to make your folds. For a Thirty-One catalog, measure from left to right, 3", then 5", 3", 5" and the last fold on the right will be whatever is leftover.

From left to right, the folds are made at 3", 5", 3", 5" and then the last fold is whatever is left, about 3/4".
If you are using a traditional sized magazine, the measurements will be a little bit smaller. As long as the two smaller folds and two larger folds are the same size it will work.

Next you'll need to fold the bottom and top. The top fold is about 3/4" and the bottom is about 2.5".

I drew black lines on the folds so you can see it a little bit better, hopefully.
Next, use your glue stick and apply glue to the smallest flap, the fold you made at the far right. Now is a good time to put glue on the top fold too. You're gluing it on the side of the paper that is facing you. After that you are going to form the bag using the folds you've made, and the right flap will overlap to form a tube.
See, it makes a tube.
See how the flap overlaps? And you've put glue on it so you just need to pinch it to make it stick and you'll have the body of your gift bag.
Next you will fold down the top flap into the bag. You may have already put glue on it in the last step, but if not you can put it on now. I just think it's easier to put glue on while the paper is still flat. This will be the top of the bag and helps it to be reinforced.
Top flap folded down into the bag
Next you will fold the bottom of the bag, kind of like you're wrapping a present.

Then put some glue on the insides of the new triangular flaps you have made so that they will stick to each other and to the bottom of the bag.
There's the bottom of your bag
Now your bag has a bottom. Mine isn't perfect, it will still work. You can also cut some cardboard to put inside the bag at the bottom to give it a more sturdy bottom. Here is what you end up with:


You can also poke your fingers in at the sides a little ways up from the bottom of the bag and crease it so that it can be folded flat and looks more like a gift bag you would buy in the store.


The last thing you will do is punch two holes on each side at the top of the bag and string some ribbon or hemp or whatever through. If you use thick ribbon you could tie knots at each end to secure the handles. I used skinny ribbon so I threaded it through the holes and then tied the ends together instead. And here is the finished product:

Yay!
This was easy and quick and I will definitely be making more! Leave a comment if you have a question. Have fun!

*UPDATE* 9/5/13
I am just amazed at how many views this post has gotten and I so appreciate everyone taking the time to check out my tutorial. I'm glad so many people can use this information, and I love all the comments on how people have made it their own! I'd love to invite you to my Facebook fan page where I post info about my Etsy shop, Sparkle & Pop, as well as other fun info like this, giveaways and more! www.facebook.com/sparkleandpop. You can also find me on Instagram and Pinterest! Thanks again!

112 comments:

  1. This so is awesome! I love it! I now have a use for old catalogs. I made a bigger bag with 4 pages a moment ago! Thank you for being so creative and sharing!

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    Replies
    1. That's really cool! Did you glue the pages together? I'm glad I could help. I hate to waste catalogs.

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  2. I used double sided tape! its very sturdy and its hidden :-)

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  3. I used double sided tape! Makes it very sturdy and you can't see it! Such a cute idea thank you! Works perfect with the new specials fliers they have been doing... the booklets... Hate throwing those out too!

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    Replies
    1. Awesome, double sided tape is a great idea!

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  4. I was so super excited to find this! What an awesome and creative way to use all those old catalogs I have! Thank you so much for sharing! I think I will do these for my C&C guests! Really easy to do but something I never thought of doing before. Thank you!

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  5. Thank you for sharing! Love this! I'm a 31 Consultant too and I will definitely try this. Thanks!

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  6. I can't wait to try making this project - thank you so much for your simple directions and photos!

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  7. I am just having the darnest time making these with all my old Pure Romance catalogs!! I think I mess up trying to make the folds.

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    Replies
    1. Pure Romance catalogs are smaller if I remember correctly. You will have to adjust the measurements for where you make the folds, but as long as you have the two smaller sections the same width (for the sides of the bag) and the two bigger sections the same (for the front and back of bag) plus a little extra to overlap you should be fine.

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  8. I used 31 ribbon, looks awesome!

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  9. I found an easier way lol ... just wrap a box and pull it back out through the top of the bag.. you can make all different sizes ....Love your idea though :D

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  10. I'm curious the strength of these bags. I've thought about maybe using this as a bag for my hostesses w/ their kits.

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    Replies
    1. I use my bags for hostess gifts and usually it's filled with a piece of tissue paper and then a Thirty-One key fob or flower and a card. You can make the bags stronger by gluing in a piece of cardboard or cardstock to the bottom of the bag on the inside.

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  12. Love it just did this with my Pure romance old catalogs for a white elephant party! Super easy! Might I add I have a broken hand and put it together!!

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  13. Thank-you for this idea!! I am a new consultant and now that my spring catalogs have arrived I have a TON of left over fall catalogs (from earning my first StartSwell) now I have a good and creative use for a few catalogs :)

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    Replies
    1. Absolutely wonderful post! What a perfect concept. Thank you stridereviewzone

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  14. Wow, I love this. How cleaver you are. Thank you so much for sharing!

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  15. Fantastic idea, thank you! Hated the idea of throwing out the catalogs!

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  16. Can you use one catalog and make multiple bags???

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    Replies
    1. Yes you only need two pages from a stapled cat a log for one bag. And from a glued magazine one page but it will be a smaller bag.

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    2. do you get 31 catalogs free from 31 company? I sell Tupperware and we have to pay for every catalog, they never offer them free. it would be nice to be associated with a company that gives/supplies free catalogs to their representatives.

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  17. so excited about this. i am a Pink Zebra rep and have catalogs left over so heres to this going to use my leftovers to make info bags :) THANK YOU!

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  19. Just found this and I'm so excited to have something to do with the Spring 2014 catalogs! :)

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  20. Very nice recycling project. .and it looks so cute as well. Thanks for sharing your DIY!

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  21. Love your idea. I too have leftover catalogs and can't wait to try this. Thanks for sharing!

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  22. I am a Close To My Heart consultant and have some older Idea Books that I will make into gift bags. TFS!

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  23. Thank you ...this is cool!!

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  24. Thanks for sharing. This will be the perfect use for my retired Stampin' Up! catalogs.

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  25. Great idea! I will have to play with the measurements to make it work for a Scentsy catalog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Did you ever get the measurements for the scentsy catalog's?

      Delete
  26. Aloha from Hawaii! THANK YOU so much for sharing this! I have so much older Younique catalogs to use and this is perfect for Easter & Mother's day gifts!!

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  27. I'm a travel agent and have lots of cruise catalogs. I envision scenes from around the world on my bags. Thanks for the idea!

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  28. Awesome idea! I didn't have a measuring tape handy but I did have a plastic ruler and I'm glad because it made it really easy to fold straight lines!

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  29. I love this idea! Thank you.

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  30. Love this, great idea! I always appreciate ideas to be eco-friendly by recycling or up-cycling, thank you.

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  32. This is adorable...love it. My old magazines will finally have a use.

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