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Posted by Mama Max - - 4 comments

Parties wouldn't be parties without pressies!  Whether it's a gift for the party hostess to say thanks, or party favors or a slice of cake to send home with your guests, there are many uses for these cute and really easy bags!  I used a paper lunch bag, but you could use bags of any size and scale the design accordingly... let your imagination go wild!  You could even use the same idea for other flags and other celebrations... picture stars & stripes for the 4th July!  They could even be used as luminaria to decorate the garden for an evening street party... read on for more information.

You will need...

  • Blue paper lunch bags (the ones I have are approximately 5" wide x 3" deep x 11" tall)
  • White paper
  • Red paper (I used some lovely 'velvet' paper I found in the craft store scrapbook section)
  • Glue
  • Scissors (or a guillotine)

Firstly, cut your red paper into strips.  My strips were 1/2" wide, but use your judgement based on the size of your bag.  You will need 4 strips per bag.

Then cut 4 strips of white paper... these need to be double the width of the red ones (so mine were 1" wide).

Glue your white strips onto the bag.  Start with one going vertically down the length of the bag.  Place the 2nd one perpendicular to it to create a cross.  Then glue the other 2 in another cross at 45' angle to the first.

Repeat with the red strips, overlaying the white ones.

Trim the overhang with scissors to finish.  Easy peasy!

Other variations on this idea include the following (for suggested online supplier information click on images below):

  • Fill the paper lunch sack with sand and light a small votive candle to make a luminaria (for outside use)... watch carefully and take necessary precautions to prevent fire.  Alternatively, use an empty jam jar with a votive candle inside and pop inside the bag.  For best results, use a light blue paper bag... as you can see, the royal blue was quite dark!   You can even buy battery operated votives if you are concerned about safety, particularly with children around.

  • Wine bottle totes - don't go empty handed to the party!  Use a solid colored blue wine tote and decorate as above!

  • Treat boxes for picnic lunches - decorate each box with a Union Jack for a child's easy picnic solution! 

  • Larger gift bags - scale up the design above for larger pressies!

4 Responses so far.

  1. Excellent idea! You always make it look so simple! Thanks for sharing your wonderful ideas.

  2. Mama Max says:

    Thanks so much for the comment... it's great to know people enjoy my ramblings!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Did you realise that the White parts of the Union Jack are not all the same width? This is how it is possible to work out whether the flag is flown the correct way up or whether it is actually upside down. So your pattern is actually incorrect! Good idea but not correct!

  4. Mama Max says:

    Hey Anonymous!

    As a Brit, and a former Geography teacher, I was well aware that the flag doesn't have reflection symmetry... and a right way around... but thanks for adding the correction!!!

    In heraldic terms what they have done is 'counterchange the saltires' (saltires are diagonals) ... this is a heraldic way of showing that Scotland joined the union before Northern Ireland - the broad white stripe of the Scottish St Andrew's saltire sits 'above' the red and narrow white saltire of Northern Ireland in the dominant top quarter next to the flag pole! My explanation is probably confusing, but hopefully you get the point!

    I did toy with the idea of designing and measuring the strips of paper to represent the flag accurately, but decided to go with a more 'artistic' interpretation for simplicity and ease of mass production!!!!!

    Glad you liked my idea though and thanks for commenting!

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Mama Max

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