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Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Another Ugly Duckling Tutorial ~ Paper Bag Snowflakes ...

Hello my dear friends,

today I am sharing a tutorial on how to make snowflakes from sandwich/ paper bags.

The actual idea is not mine and unfortunately I have any clue who came up with this first but who ever did ... thank you for such an amazing idea!

I loved making my paper bag snowflake so much that I wanted to you to able to make them too and so I adapted them to using paper bags you can buy locally in Canada and the US. For the snowflake I made in this tutorial, I used white crafting bags from the Dollar Store in the size 4 3/4 by 7 1/4 inches. They are also thicker than the sandwich bags I used for my first snowflake and therefore this snowflake is not as delicate as my first one. You could also use brown sandwich bags if you wish. Depending on the size of your bags, you will have to see how many of them you will need to make a snowflake/star as you are working on it. Eight bags were used for the one I made in this tutorial.

You will need the following ...

~ White paper bags (or brown looks very lovely too)
~ Glue stick
~ A piece of white card
~ Scissors and/or crafting knife and cutting mat
                                   ~ Ruler                               ❅
~ Pencil
                    ~ Eraser              ❄  
~ White seam binding
~ Hole punch
~ Stapler
   ❄ And now you can start making yourself a beautiful snowflake ...

Take a bag ...

... and fold the corners of the bottom flap over into a triangle ...

... like this!

Using you folding line as a guide, cut the two corners off.

Take your glue stick and apply glue onto the leftover part of the bottom flap and ...

...stick it down to the bag.

Before and after cutting and gluing.

Again using your glue stick, apply glue at the edge of the bottom of the bag and to the center of the bag all the way to the top of the bag. (The squiggly line is the where you should apply the glue.)

Place one bag on top of another and press down firmly, ...

... making sure your bags are aligned as good as possible.

Do this with several bags. 
(Again it depends on the size of the bags that you are using, on how many you will need to use to make a snowflake.)

After you have glued maybe 6 bags together, open them up and see how many more you might need to form a circle. From here on glue one at a time, then open them up again and check if any more are needed to complete the full circle shape. 

Once you have all the bags that are needed glued together you can mark out where your cutting lines will be to give your bags the shape you want it to have.

Using you ruler draw your cutting lines.
For my snowflake I marked the center at 6 3/4 inches and the sides at 4 inches. You can adapt the markings it to the size of your bag. Mark the center to just under the edge and the sides 2/3 of the length or you can use your own measurements/dimensions if you wish.

Now you can start the cutting.

You can use scissors or your crafting knife. 
Only cut a few bags at a time, it could be too thick otherwise and then you will get uneven edges.

Always make sure you erase all your pencil marks but be careful when doing so.
I slipped and crinkled the top layer of my snowflake.

Now take your piece of white card and mark it ...

... for two small stripe the size of 5/8 inches by 2 inches.

Cut them out and ...

... again get rid of those pencil marks.

Apply glue to your pieces of card ...

... and place one on either side of your stack of bags.
This is will strengthen the paper for when you attach your seam binding to it and hang it up.

I used my crafting knife to tidy up a few uneven edges before I continued with the next step.
(If you want a star and not a snowflake you can skip this next step.)

Now you can can turn your star into a snowflake ...

Using small sharp scissors cut out bits and pieces in the shape of  triangles or maybe even squares,  again a few bags at a time. Tidy up any uneven edges again once this step in done.
(Can you see where I crinkled the tip of my snowflake when I was erasing my pencil lines?)

Cut the bits and pieces out of  both sides of your star but not too much. 
You still want the bags to be held together in several places or this won't work out.

Next take you hole punch and ...

... punch a hole into your snowflake where one of the strips of card is. 

This is where the ribbon will feed through and hold the snowflake together. This will also enable you to hang it up and fold it flat again when it is not needed.

Cut a length of seam binding ( I cut mine a bit over a yard long)  ...

... and place one end of it on top of the strip of card on the opposite side of the snowflake ...

... and using your stapler, secure it to the card strip and snowflake.

All there is left to do is bring the ribbon from the one side of the star to the other and feed it through the hole and carefully pull it together ~ your snowflake is now done!

There is only one last thing to do ... 

... find somewhere to hang your newest creation so you can enjoy it all of the time!

I hope this tutorial shows you how easy it is to make something beautiful from something simple and plain. Why not try it out? ... There is still plenty of time to make one or two before Christmas!
I am maybe going to try glassine bags next Christmas, if I can find out which glue is needed to glue them together.  Glassine snowflakes would look amazing in my eyes since they are shiny and a little translucent. If I do and things work out, I will share them here with you of course.

Thank you for taking the time to visit me here today at Todolwen. It is always so nice when you do.

I hope you are well my dear friends and life is treating you kind.

Have a peaceful and creative day.


  1. Oh Karen another very crafty and creative treasure from you. Very pretty and fun.

  2. So pretty, Karen! I love paper snowflakes.

  3. Very pretty! I remember doing something similar many years ago but of course have forgotten how I did it. I agree - glassine would be amazing!