I am practically giddy over today’s holiday craft project! This is one of those projects that I didn’t really need to do, nor did I really have the time for, but I couldn’t get the idea out of my head and HAD to see it come to life. I am SO glad I decided to see this project through, because not only are these Christmas Character Treat Bag Toppers about the cutest things ever, but now I am well on my way to having Henry’s school class gifts all done and ready for the holiday party next week (which is about an entire week earlier than I normally have things ready!). If you need a super fun and cute way to top off your bags of homemade fudge for the neighbors OR are looking for another reason to buy a Cricut Explore, I have just the project for you!
I think treat bag toppers are such a clever idea. You can take an inexpensive little bag or envelope, fill it with editable treats, stickers, cards, anything (!!!) and transform it into a notable and themed gift simply by adding a paper topper to close it off. Folding and stapling paper over the top of a bag is a great solution for party favors, holiday treats and more…this project just takes it up a notch. Or two 😉
I’ll show you exactly how these cute little guys come together, but if you look closely, they are just variations on the same face: topper, cheeks, eyes, nose and smile. They become Santa, Mrs. Claus, an Elf and a Reindeer by swapping out a few accessories. I really can’t decide which one is my favorite!
What You Need to Make Christmas Character Treat Bag Toppers
I will admit, these do take a bit of time to pull together. But the tradeoff is that they are super inexpensive to make! A handful of colored cardstock, treat bags, craft adhesive and a stapler are all you need to transform your treat bags into adorable Christmas characters!
Oh…and you’ll need a Cricut Explore. You can certainly make these by cutting shapes out by hand (or searching for clipart/graphics on Google and printing them onto cardstock), but the Cricut Explore sure makes this a more manageable endeavor (especially if you’re making 24 of them for a Kindergarten class!) If you have a Cricut Design Space account, I have the cut files all ready for you HERE (the project should open right in Design Space).
Note that these Christmas friends are not a Cricut “set.” I simply hunted and pecked through the Design Space library to find the images and shapes that worked the best to get the looks I wanted. If you’d like to make these on your own or in a different e-cutter software, here are the shapes and elements I used to pull together each character.
Assembling the Treat Bag Toppers
If you are making these for a class, team, troop, or even the whole street, I highly recommend cutting EVERYTHING at once. It makes assembling so much faster!
Here’s another tip! Cut all the big pieces, as well as anything that will hang off the edges, from sturdy paper…
…but cut the itty bitty pieces from vinyl! Instead of fussing with glue for the little eyes and smiles, they went on just like stickers!
Once you have everything cut and ready to go, it’s just a matter of glueing everything together with some craft glue. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Fold the base in half before assembling the character so you can be sure everything will be on the front of the bag once folded over.
- Start by placing the cheeks and then build out from there.
- The personalities really come to life through the eyes and smile. Don’t hesitate to play around with the placement of these elements to give each one a slightly different look.
Here is a visual breakdown of how each character comes to life:
While these are designed to be Treat Bag Toppers, they would also make super cute gift tags, gift card holders, or place cards for your holiday table!
Attaching the Treat Bag Toppers
So you might be wondering what’s inside my treat bags for Henry’s class this year? I found a few years ago that you can really go wrong with inexpensive little craft sets from the craft store. They are always on sale this time of year and are perfect for all the no food/allergy precautions abundant in school treats/gifts these days. I got these at Michaels for $0.50 each!
I simply slid the bead kit into the bag…
…folded the topper over the top of the bag and stapled it shut on each side.
Once the faces are assembled, putting the bag toppers onto the bags couldn’t be any quicker!
I have everything cut for Henry’s whole class and have about half of them assembled. They do take a bit of patience to get them all cut; but once they are, they come together pretty fast. School-aged kids are the perfect assembly helpers – they can assemble while you prepare whatever is going to go inside each bag! For us, getting Henry to write his name on each one will be the longest/hardest part, lol!
Over the years, I have found that I really enjoy these little craft projects around the holidays. Even though life is busy and there are a million things to do, I really enjoy making extra-special handmade things for the people/kids on our list. I think because I grew up with a Mom who made homemade stockings and ornaments, it just feels like the perfect time to bust out the felt and paper and markers and make something festive! I think Santa and Mrs. Claus agree!
I hope you guys love this project as much as I do! Now that I’ve made them, I can get them out of my head and (finally!) move on to finishing our decorating.
Hope you all have a great weekend! See you back here next week!