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Upcycle Coffee Bags into Holiday Ribbons

Updated on August 19, 2012
Doggie treat bag to holiday ribbon!
Doggie treat bag to holiday ribbon!

My Blane puppy loves Beggin Strips treats and it turns out those bags are perfect for making craft holiday ribbons. Any bag that is "foil" lined will work to make these ribbons. Try coffee bean bags and candy bags if you don't have a dog with a Beggin Strips problem :)

What do you need?

This is a really simple project, you will only need a few supplies:

  • Vacuum seal coffee bag or doggie treat bag.
  • Scissors
  • Hot Glue
  • Twist tie or double sided tape (to attach your ribbon to a wrapped gift)

This project can be done with older kids as long as they are supervised with the scissors and the hot glue.

Cut half inch strips
Cut half inch strips

Get to Slicing!

First, cut off the top seal and the side seams of the bag. Next, cut down the side seam and trim off the edges so you have one large, flat piece. If you are using a coffee bag, make sure to cut of and discard the vacuum seal "button".

Once you have a large flat piece of foil lined bag, start cutting it into thin, long strips. You are trying to get a smooth edge, but the strips do not have to be completely uniform. Don't worry about measuring, just do the best you can.

Your strips should be approximately half an inch wide and no more than six or so inches long. They don't have to be perfect right now, you can always trim or discard strips that don't look right after curling.

All the curled strips!
All the curled strips!

Curling Time!

If you have several bags, try mix and match the bags so you can make multicolored ribbons. In my pictures I am using a Beggin Strips bag and a red coffee bag. All the different colors mixing together turns out looking really cool.

Once you have cut all of your bag into your half inch strips it is time to curl them up to look just like those holiday ribbons you see in the store. Slide each strip with the foil side down along the inside of your scissors' blade (this is the part where you have to watch the little ones!) The material will curl up immediately. If yours does not, try to create a bit more tension between the strip and the blade.

Try to leave the top half inch or so uncurled so you can attach all the strips together.

Glue Time!

Once you have all of your strips cut and curled, it is time to break out the glue gun. I am going to go ahead and warn you. You WILL burn yourself. At least a little.

Apply a little touch of glue to one strip and glue it to two or three other strips. Squeeze the strips together and keep building (this is where I always burn myself!)

There really is no pattern to this, just try to make sure all the sides have an equal number of curls. The beauty of these ribbons is that they look like a (pretty) mess of curls! Also make sure you use enough glue on each curl that it does not come off.

Finishing it up!

Finished gluing? Now it is time to add your double sided tape or twisty tie so you can attach your new ribbon to a gift for a hand crafted touch! I glued the Beggin Strips ribbon to a newspaper basket I had already made. Have fun making your ribbons and let me know what you think!

Want more upcycling ideas? Check out my tutorials for making drinking glasses from wine bottles or making scratched records into bowls!


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    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 

      7 years ago from Texas

      These curly ribbons look great! Who would have thought you could do it with food packaging. So many things now come in that sort of packaging. Guess I better start saving them :) Thank you for this very useful info!

    • danielleantosz profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Florida

      Thanks guys! If anyone gives it a try let me know how it works for you.

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Oh my gosh, it looks so cute! Who woulda thunk it??? I've often looked at this type of packaging and wondered what could be done with it. Now I shall wonder no more!

    • carcro profile image

      Paul Cronin 

      7 years ago from Winnipeg

      Wow, that looks great! We used to make so many homemade crafts at xmas time. Its amazing how many great craft ideas our out there and it sure can save you a bundle too. The best part is the memories made with your family when everyone takes part. Thanks for the info...Voted Up!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      This is a great idea to recycle bags and also to save money, because those store-bought ribbons can be pricey!


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