Let Fall mark the beginning of gift giving season with these easy-to-make baskets made from paper lunch bags! By using different colors of string or ribbon and filling them with different goodies, these baskets can go with any season: striped cotton baker’s twine and cherry tomatoes for Summer, natural raffia ribbon and fresh-picked apples for Fall (Trick or Treating anyone?), red grosgrain ribbon and homemade holiday cookies for Christmas!
materials: a paper lunch bag; about 60″ of string, twine, or ribbon; scissors; standard hole punch; ruler (optional); transparent tape (optional)
step 1: Fold the top of the bag down about 2″ to one side and crease; unfold bag.
step 2: Open the bag and very carefully roll the top down all around using the crease you made as a guide. You are basically making a cuff, like you would with a pant leg. For future reference, it is easiest to crease the bag when it is flattened, and easiest to cuff it when it is open. This means you’ll be opening and closing the bag several times.
step 3: Repeat steps 1 & 2 two more times each. You’ll end up rolling the top of your bag down three times altogether.
step 4: Punch a hole in each of the four top corners of the bag. Put the holes about 1″ in from the side and 1/2″ down from the top. You can use a ruler if you like or you can just eyeball it.
step 5: Take one end of your string and thread it through the first hole from front to back.
step 6: While holding the end of the string in place with one hand, run it down the front of the basket…
step 7: …across the bottom of the basket…
step 8: …and up the back of the basket. When you get to the next hold, thread the string through from front to back again.
step 9: Leave yourself about 6 inches of slack for the handle, then run the string across the bag to the other hole (on the same side of bag as the hole you just went through), and thread the string through from back to front. Repeat steps 6-8 and the first half of step 9.
step 10: Once the string has gone through all of the holes, you just need to tie it off. To finish your basket, connect the two ends of your string (which should now be right next to each other) with a secure double knot, leaving enough slack for the second handle. Trim any extra string, and carefully arrange the string so that the knot doesn’t show. If you like, you can put a piece of transparent tape on the strings on the bottom of the bag to hold them in place, but it isn’t necessary.