You might remember the small pretty patterned paper bag template I did a few months ago?
Well I find myself in need of something a little larger recently and so decided to modify the template and scale it up to fit an A3 piece of paper. I bought some lovely 180gsm A3 paper from my local paper store and some cute cotton tape from my local haberdashery and got to work.
This is what I come up with! The final bag measures 12.7 cm wide x 19 cm high x 4.8 cm deep
To start the project I printed out the template onto A3 slightly textured paper. This project works better with nice thick paper, so get the thickest you can find. But make sure that it’s not too thick, you want it to be able to feed through your printer!
I then cut out the template using a ruler and scalpel (as I’m fanatical about being precise) but you could easily use an x-acto knife or even scissors if you’re doing this project with children.
I then scored and folded all along all the fold lines (the light dotted lines on the template). Using a quick drying paper glue, I neatly glued the top flap down. I left a small portion unglued where the side flap tucks underneath (purely for aesthetic purposes). Gluing down the top flap makes your bag a lot stronger and will help avoid the handles pulling out if you put a heavy gift in it!
This is what the outside of your bag should look like at this point.
And his is what the inside of your bag should look like.
I then put a thick piece of card inside my bag (so that I didn’t cut through both sides) and measured and marked where I would like my handles to go. I was using 1.5cm wide tape and cut the line in 2.5 cms in from the side and 2 cms down from the top of the bag.
I did this step here and not before glueing the side panel because I was in a hurry and wanted the glue to have time to dry before I cut it. But if you have a little more time, I would suggest doing this step before you glue the side panel if you can. It will mean you’re less likely to have an accident and cut down too far.
Then using a scalpel I cut along the lines I’d marked.
Moving to the bottom of the bag, I folded the small side flaps in, put glue on the printed side of each and glued one of the large flaps down to the two small ones. You may need to turn your bag up and look in through the top of the bag to line it all up nicely, or you may end up with a bag that’s slightly twisted.
I then glued the final bottom panel into place.
As I wanted some of my bags to be able to be packed away flat for future use, I neatly folded the sides in and the bottom up as shown below. You can avoid this step if you’re not worried storing them.
I then fed my cotton tape through the holes I’d cut. I used about 35 cms of tape for each handle.
After lining the tape up and leaving enough length for the tape to adhere past the folded-over top panel, I put a good amount of strong quick drying glue onto the underside of the tape and neatly glued it down. As this portion of the bag is structural, I used a superglue.
Glueing it over and past the top fold gives the bag more structural strength. But you can avoid glueing it and just knot the handle ends if you want.
Repeat the steps above for the other handle and you’re done!
You can download the templates for each of the bags below.