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How to Upcycle Bunny Ear Costumes into Beautiful Party Favor Bags

Updated on April 17, 2014

Bunny Easter Bags made from Upcycled Bunny Ears

Source

Introduction.

I purchased a wholesale quantity of bunny ears from a costume supply store when I volunteered at a preschool years ago. I had quite a lot left over in the back storage closet of my craft studio. After coming across them in a bag, I started thinking about what I could do with them now that my children are no longer the bunny-ear wearing age.

What is upcycling?

The definition offered by Wikipedia for Creative Reuse, upcycling, or repurposing is the process of taking materials or products that are unwanted for their original function and transforming them into pieces of art or other useful items.

This is different from recycling where products are broken down to component parts and re-manufactured into new products.

Conventional reuse is when the product is used in its original purpose again.


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Jelly Beans and Paper Shreds fill the bunny bag.  Upcycle your own used tissue paper by shredding it in a paper shredder.Bunny ears cut from headbands from old costumes.White paper bags can be found in grocery stores near the brown lunch bags.Have a pair of scissors and paper trimmer ready to trim and cut.A hole punch and Sizzix dies will come in handy when preparing the circles for the bunny feet.Cotton balls make great bunny tails.Double-sided tape and glue dots make strong paper adhesives.
Jelly Beans and Paper Shreds fill the bunny bag.  Upcycle your own used tissue paper by shredding it in a paper shredder.
Jelly Beans and Paper Shreds fill the bunny bag. Upcycle your own used tissue paper by shredding it in a paper shredder. | Source
Bunny ears cut from headbands from old costumes.
Bunny ears cut from headbands from old costumes. | Source
White paper bags can be found in grocery stores near the brown lunch bags.
White paper bags can be found in grocery stores near the brown lunch bags. | Source
Have a pair of scissors and paper trimmer ready to trim and cut.
Have a pair of scissors and paper trimmer ready to trim and cut. | Source
A hole punch and Sizzix dies will come in handy when preparing the circles for the bunny feet.
A hole punch and Sizzix dies will come in handy when preparing the circles for the bunny feet. | Source
Cotton balls make great bunny tails.
Cotton balls make great bunny tails. | Source
Double-sided tape and glue dots make strong paper adhesives.
Double-sided tape and glue dots make strong paper adhesives. | Source

Time-Saving Tip!

Using an electric paper shredder, shred pink tissue paper cut in half and use to fill the favor bags.

Recycle old tissue paper from gift bags for another upcycled tip!

Decorative Touch. Use an old cookie jar to store your glue sticks.

I store my glue sticks in an old cookie jar to give a neater appearance in my craft studio.
I store my glue sticks in an old cookie jar to give a neater appearance in my craft studio. | Source

Supply List.

Here is a list of supplies that you will need in order to complete this project:

  • Bunny ear headbands from old costumers such as Halloween or Easter
  • White paper bags
  • Paper trimmer
  • Scissors
  • Paper hole punch
  • Cardstock in white and pink
  • Hot glue
  • Cotton Balls (for the tail)
  • Other form of strong paper adhesive such as glue dots or double-sided tape
  • Shredded basket filler or tissue paper
  • Jelly beans or other favors

Sizzix users: alternative to cutting out the circles, use the medium oval die from Tags, Oval Combo Set and the Circle Trio Die from the Windows and Frame Making Set. This will save time instead of cutting out all of the circles by hand, especially for large-scale projects.

Always Protect Your Work Surface!
I use an old desk calendar flipped upside down to catch glue, sample marker color, and provide surface protection for the table in my craft studio. The large white paper gives me a wide work surface and only costs $3 at the local store.

The finished prodcut.

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Finished bunny bag.  They will look so cute lined up on your party table.
Finished bunny bag. They will look so cute lined up on your party table. | Source
All bunnies have a cotton tail.
All bunnies have a cotton tail. | Source
Source
Adhere the circles to the oval feet to make paws.
Adhere the circles to the oval feet to make paws. | Source
Hot glue the back of the bunny ears about 3" up from the bottom.
Hot glue the back of the bunny ears about 3" up from the bottom. | Source
Make sure to line up the ears with the bottom inside of the bag .  Filler will hide the bottom of the ears.
Make sure to line up the ears with the bottom inside of the bag . Filler will hide the bottom of the ears. | Source
Add a bow tie or ribbon.
Add a bow tie or ribbon. | Source
Fill the bag with shredded basket filler or tissue paper.
Fill the bag with shredded basket filler or tissue paper. | Source

Instructions.

Step 1. Trim off the bottoms of white paper lunch bags with a paper trimmer. Save the tops for later.

Step 2. Cut the bunny ears away from the costume headband and set aside. Save the headbands for later.

Step 3. Cut out two ovals for feet using pink cardstock (per favor bag). Sizzix users, use the medium oval from the Tag Die Cut Set 38-0937. This is the perfect size oval shape.

Step 4. Cut out circles from white cardstock for the paw prints to adhere to the feet. Two size circles are needed. One 3/4" circle per foot plus 3 small hole punch size circles. That's a total of two 3/4" circles and 6 hole punch circles per favor bag. I used a regular school paper hole punch to create the circles for the paws. Sizzix users, use the Circle Trio Die from the Windows and Frame Making Set.

Step 5. Adhere the bunny ears to the back side of the bags, on the inner side, using hot glue. Make sure to align the bottom of the ears with the bottom of the inside of the bag. Don't worry if the bags fall over from the weight of the ears. This will be resolved when you add the paper filler and jelly beans to weight the favor bags down. The paper shreds will hide the bottoms of the ears in the favor bag.

Step 6. Adhere the circles to the ovals, and then glue on to the front of the bags using a strong paper adhesive.

Step 7. Use basket filler or shred tissue paper and fill the bag.

Step 8. Glue a cotton ball on the back of the bag.

Step 9. Complete by filling with jelly beans or other favors.

Bonus: My ear headbands came as a set with bow ties. I hot glued one to the front. You could also try using a pink bow to decorate yours!

The bag won't be top heavy once filled with basket filler.

Source
Save the discarded pieces for future projects!
Tops of paper bags that have been trimmed off can be saved for future projects such as school projects or created in to more bags! See tutorial below.
Use the headbands from the bunny ear to make new headbands.
Cash in on these extra projects at the next craft sale at your local school!

Create jelly bean packets out of the remaining portions of white bags.

After trimming off the bottoms of the bags for this project, you will have a lot of unused and wasted bag materials.

Here is another creative idea for upcycling the remaining portions of bag.

You will need:

  • Unused portions of white paper bags from the favor bag tutorial above
  • Sewing machine
  • White thread
  • Rubber stamps
  • Coloring pencils or markers
  • Glitter glue
  • Jelly beans


Bonus sewn treat bag!

Source
Start with the upper portion of white lunch bag that was set aside from the previous project.
Start with the upper portion of white lunch bag that was set aside from the previous project. | Source
Trim to 3 1/2".
Trim to 3 1/2". | Source
Protect the color from going through to the back with a sheet of wax paper placed in between.
Protect the color from going through to the back with a sheet of wax paper placed in between. | Source
Color in your stamped design using markers, colored pencils, chalk, or glitter glue.
Color in your stamped design using markers, colored pencils, chalk, or glitter glue. | Source
Sew the bags starting with the bottom end.
Sew the bags starting with the bottom end. | Source

Instructions.

Step 1. Using the remaining portions of paper bag, cut a 3 1/2" section.

Step 2. Decorate one side or both with Easter rubber stamps, flowers, bunny stamps, or sentiments.

Step 3. Color in your design with colored pencils, markers, or glitter glue. Make sure the marker colors don't show through on the back. Insert a piece of wax paper between the layers before coloring with marker. Copic Marker users: Cerise RV06, Pink RV11, and Chrome Orange YR04.

Step 4. Set aside to dry.

Step 5. Sew across the bottom to create a seal.

Step 6. Fill with treats such as jelly beans. Holds approximately 12 jelly beans.

Step 7. Sew across the top to create a seal.

Bonus: Add embellishments for added detail. I used a small white pompom for the tail of the rubber stamped bunny.

Now you have a nice little favor packet completely sealed so nothing will spill out while passing around to friends, school classmates, Easter parties or birthday parties.

Think outside the bag!

What else could you find to fill these little bags with and pass out among friends? How about some of these suggestions:

  • Coins
  • Gift cards
  • Mini Lego figures
  • Flat chocolate candies
  • Licorice bites
  • M&Ms
  • Skittles
  • Gum balls
  • Smarties
  • Mini Hershey candy bars
  • Nonpareils


Finished product.
Finished product. | Source

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Where to find supplies.

Here is a list of suggested places to purchase the supplies used to create this tutorial.

  • Bunny ear headbands can be found in Halloween costume aisles or on clearance after Halloween. Most stores sell them as accessories or with an actual bunny costume. Walmart, Toys R Us, and costume stores have bunny ears for sale mostly once a year, possibly at Easter also, but online sellers will have them year round.
  • Check your child's old costumes and closets for bunny ears you can use to upcycle for this project.
  • Most grocery stores sell brown paper lunch bags, so it took a little searching to find white bags. I have found the bags at Target, Walmart, and also online. They are normally the same price as a package of regular lunch bags.
  • The rest of the items in this tutorial came from craft stores, Walmart, the Dollar Tree or from leftover prior craft projects located in my craft studio. Look around your craft space and see what you have available to start this project without spending a lot of money.

Upcycling Fun!

Turn an old vanity table into a sewing table for your craft room. Vanity tables are usually smaller than craft tables, but include drawers which can be used to store your sewing notions.

I use this old vanity as a sewing table.  I like the functionality it has for hiding sewing notions in the drawers.
I use this old vanity as a sewing table. I like the functionality it has for hiding sewing notions in the drawers. | Source

Finding items to upcycle at thrift stores.

Plan a day trip to a few local thrift stores.

There's nothing more relaxing to me than having a day where I can take my time and sort through flea markets or thrift stores for the perfect used items to upcycle.

It's not often that I get the chance to do this, so I really make a special day out of it and plan my time wisely.

Check out the used furniture sections starting with wooden cabinets and drawered chests. These are so much fun to repaint and repurpose into new furniture items for your home.

Consider using fabric from old clothing to create doll clothes.

Turn old China cups into candle holders.

The possibilities are endless and are so much fun to imagine!

Conclusion.

The designs for these craft tutorial are my own ideas. I'm so glad to share them with you.

I hope that you will enjoy making them as much as I did. Use them for your next Easter party, baby shower, birthday party, or school party. They will certainly be the tale of the party!

Comments

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    • WriterJanis profile image

      Janis 3 years ago from California

      This is such an adorable idea. I never would have thought of this.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 3 years ago from California

      You are crafty to the core! Loved this idea!

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 3 years ago from Texas

      What a neat Idea, I wish I had read this three weeks ago, it would have made a great baby gift bag for the baby shower I just went to.

      This is awesome and voted that way and shared.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Wonderfully clever idea, beautiful, useful and fun to make. Unfortunately I'm totally rubbish at craft-work. :)

      Great hub.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi MsDora! Thanks so much for coming here and commenting. You always leave such thoughtful comments.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi Sandyspider. So nice to see you here, thanks so much for commenting.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi DDE! Thanks so much for stopping by and your very thoughtful comments! It's always a pleasure to see you.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi Chitrangada, thanks so much for your kind comments. I'm always looking for ways to re-purpose things into crafty projects.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi Faith! They are probably on clearance right now at some party store.

      I hope you and your family had a truly blessed Easter!

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi Alicia! Thank you so much for your kind words and for stopping by.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi Flourish! Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi EP! Thank you so much for your kind comments.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi Sha! Thanks so much for stopping by. It was a fun project.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
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      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi WiccanSage! I was so happy this project came out so cute because I had it in the back of my mind for the past year. Finally, I dug out the remaining ears from my closet and hopped right to it! LOL Thanks for stopping by.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks to you, I understand the difference between upcycling and recycling. Your passion for these creative projects is admirable. I love the finished Easter item. Thanks for sharing the instructions. Voted Up!

    • Sandyspider profile image

      Sandy Mertens 3 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

      This is amazing. Love the bunny ear craft.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      You always surprise me with such wonderful creative ideas and I enjoy reading your helpful hubs. Voted up, useful interesting, and beautiful.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 3 years ago from New Delhi, India

      This looks so cute and economical too. I always prefer recycling and reusing things, whether it is cloth pieces or colored gift papers etc. It is an interesting project and can be passed on to the kids. They would love it.

      Thanks for sharing the details! Voted up!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

      Aw, I love these! I want to try to make these for my grands! I wish I had those bunny ears in my closet : )

      Have a blessed Easter with your wonderful family dear Crafty

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      These projects are lovely, Crafty! The finished items are very cute. I'm sure children would love them.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      This is adorable! You are super creative oh Crafty one!

    • epbooks profile image

      Elizabeth Parker 3 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      That is SUPER cute! I wish I had someone to give them to and if I did, I'd make some!!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Oh, those are too cute! You are so creative, Crafty. Your bunny baskets make me wish I was a little kid again!

    • WiccanSage profile image

      Mackenzie Sage Wright 3 years ago

      Oh, wow, that's just adorable! That is a new one, I haven't seen that one lately... great job! Unfortunately my kids are now past the age where they'd appreciate this kind of thing, lol. I look forward to grandchildren-- haha. Nice work, voted up & happy Easter!

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Billy, it's not often that I actually like my own work, but this one was so cute I sent both samples in to work with my husband today for his desk. This is one of those projects that would be great for a preschool class if the teacher started it first by gluing on the ears. Thank you for commenting!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      This is so terribly clever my friend. I will pass this on to friends who have little ones. I know they will just love it. Heck, I don't have little kids and I just love it. :) Have a great day!