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Thursday, December 2, 2010

Jean Franks Beck: Book Lover's Gift Kit

Hello again, everyone, and Happy Friday! Today I have a little booklover's gift kit, just in time to make for the holidays. Have you noticed how these little paper bag gift sacks are cropping up everywhere? I've used the Relish Reading plate to make a version that will hold a gift card, a bookmark, a Christmas card, and a few little goodies, all perfectly packaged and ready to delight. Here's what I made for inside:

The How-To's:
Start by cutting a tiny sliver off the bottom of a folded lunch sack. I happened to find red ones and thought they'd be festive, but kraft would look just as lovely.
Next, sew along where the bag would naturally fold, and down from the fold to the bottom of the sack.
This will create a little pocket, like so: (There will be a couple of layers of folded paper in there - don't worry about that.)
Next, measure how wide your gift card is, and mark where you will sew, just from the open bottom up to the line of stitching at the fold. The other side will hold your bookmark. As it happened, my pockets were about even.
So now you've got this:
At this point, you can trim any excess off the top of the bag - however tall you'd like it to be. You might also want to add a decorative edge to the top after trimming:

Next, sew up the entire height of the bag on either side. I increased the stitch length for this step, so that I didn't perforate the paper while sewing over my previous stitching. Embellish the edge of the smaller pocket. I used some flowers pulled off a big box store floral, some vintage leaves, and a little vintage candy cane I got on Etsy.
Measure the width of your non-gift card side, and make a bookmark to fit. For my bookmark, I used a Nestabilities die to trace a pretty pattern for the top.
I stamped the sweet little girl carrying the book and one of my favorite sentiments from the set cut up and distressed. The paper is from Webster's Pages, with some of the same trim that I used for the pocket, and some seam binding for the top.
For the card, I made the little girl into an angel using German scrap wings and a halo cut from a gold foil doily. You could also use chipboard, clipart, or stamped wings. More Webster's Pages patterned paper, seam binding, a little Making Memories red rose finding, and another Christmas rose finish it off. Isn't she the cutest?
Slip the gift card and the bookmark into the very front pocket. If you get stuck halfway down, separate the inner layers of the pocket until you can slide them all the way (sometimes there are extra little layers/folds in the bag). The card goes in the very back pocket, leaving an extra little pocket in between for a little treat, candy, tea bags, or maybe even the New York Times bestseller list for some suggested reading.

I hope you like this fun and easy little project - it packs lots of "wow factor" for very little time and effort, perfect for Christmas, easily adapted for birthdays, teacher gifts, you name it. Have a fabulous weekend, my friends!


  1. Wow! The little sneak peek on your blog was amazing, but this is incredible! Beautiful!!!!

  2. Completely stunning, Jean! What a beautiful gift idea! I love how you transformed the bag and the little girl looks fabulous as a sweet angel!

  3. I love this! This is such a wonderful gift idea. Very very beautiful.

  4. Love the way you have made her into an angel even if she does have a mischievous look on her face! Great idea.

  5. This is terrific, some wonderful little details and a great idea!

    Lucy x


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