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How to Create Your Own Halloween Goody Bags in 7 steps!
My fondest memory of childhood trick-or-treating is walking past the spookiest of houses decorated with cobwebs and fake coffins that sprung open upon the motion of children hustling to the front door.
Several people in the neighborhood gave the most generous amount of candies, cutely wrapped in homemade paper sacks, decorated with ribbon. These neighbors are the ones I attribute to the inspiration for making a unique goody bag that children will not want to part with long after the candy has been opened and eaten.
Events for which a goody bag will be useful.
Last year, our town cancelled Halloween! We were still cleaning up from Hurricane Sandy. It put a damper on our annual spooky fun to say the least. The children were so disappointed. I drove to the grocery store and braved the masses to fight for a last bag of generic candy. I would have not otherwise bought any because we do not get trick-or-treaters here off of the main road.
After returning home, we made some Halloween goody bags to take our mind off of the fun we thought we missed out on and instead applied our focus to the fun we created instead.
It just so happened I had stickers, pencils, mini boxes of crayons, and coloring sheets leftover from years of saving them for a rainy day. To my surprise, the children delighted in stocking their goody bags full of stuff they already had duplicates of in their bedrooms. We had a lot of fun together and still reminisce about the time Halloween didn't happen.
- Goody bags are traditionally presented at birthday parties.
- Some events such as baby showers and weddings prepare parting gifts for guests.
- Goody bags have been a favorite at school parties by parents who fill them with pencils, stickers and erasers for various holidays during the year.
- Goody bags are often passed out around several holidays during the year including Easter, Halloween, and Christmas.
Common Fillers for Goody Bags.
Plastic jewelry such as rings and bracelets
Small toy cars
Note to ponder!
Party supplies are a multi-billion dollar industry!
Supplies needed for creating a Halloween goody bag.
Please see the table below for some suggested supplies for creating a Halloween goody bag that will hold candy, pencils, stickers, Halloween trinkets, or other items you find for filling the bags for the purpose you have in mind.
The party supply industry rakes in billions each year.
Here are some ideas for shopping for Halloween party supplies or loot bag fillers (in no particular order):
- Party City
- Michael's Craft Store
- AC Moore Craft Store
- Dollar Stores
- Ocean State Job Lot
- Christmas Tree Shop
- Candy stores
- Other department stores not listed here
- Other craft stores not listed here
With the growing popularity of the internet, party shoppers may find larger inventories for party ideas at online retailers.
Materials used to make goody bags.
Plastic bags decorated with a favorite party theme.
Favor boxes made from cardstock.
Mini paper bags from craft stores.
Markers or paint.
Step one. Choosing the right bag.
There are many types of goody bags you can create using different materials.
Quickly looking through my stash of crafts, I came up with five different types. Imagine what you could find at a craft store, especially in the Halloween aisle!
- The organza bag. Organza bags comes in all colors. They are often presented to party attendees at baby showers and wedding showers. They are usually smaller in size, approximately 3" x 3". Most of them have a drawstring closure. They are perfect for holding one small bottle of bubbles or a few candies such as pillow mints.
- Mini paper bags. Mini paper bags are in most craft stores and come in all colors. They are perfect for decorating in your own style for parties and gift ideas. They are perfect for rubber stamping.
- The vellum flat bag or envelope. These envelopes are good for stickers. They remain flat and do not have a wider bottom. They come in many different designs.
- Favor boxes. Favor boxes are made from cardstock and come in many designs. Some are solid color. They often are found in take-out style with metal handles. Some have ribbon handles. They stand on their own and are useful for filling will candies and other small trinkets. Some are large enough to hold one cupcake, such as leftovers from a wedding shower.
- The paper lunch bag. These bags come in a standard size and a larger size. They can be found in a lot of different stores. They come in a variety of colors and designs. Some come in a 10 pack with printed designs. Others come in solid brown, red, white, blue, and other assorted colors.
For this project, I used white bags, although I have since found ghost printed paper bags online.
Step two. Prepare a design.
Some prefer to sketch a design before creating one.
Think about what you would like to have on your design. Here are some ideas for creating a Halloween scene:
- Haunted Houses
- Spooky fences
- Witch hats
The inspiration for the design showed above is from printed fabric with ghosts.
Step three. Get your materials in order.
Once you've picked out the bag to start with, and prepared a design, the next step is to put everything together.
You may wish to use die cuts, stickers, fabric, rubber stamped images or other elements. First, place everything where you want it to see how it all comes together without adhering anything with glue. In the event your design doesn't flow together as creatively as expected, everything can be re-arranged easily.
Try it before you adhere it.
Tips for a mess-free work area!
Use paper cupcake liners for mixing glue, glitter and glaze. Paper liners are inexpensive and easy to keep on hand in a craft room. I use them every time I'm working on a project which required a mixture of glitter and glue.
Use wax paper to set aside wet embellishments while drying.
Step four. Glitter or paint all pieces.
After you have your design configured, glitter and paint all of the pieces that you intend to. By doing so now, there is a less likely chance that any wet mediums will contaminate other pieces or decorations.
- Use glitter glue for pieces that you want to add a shiny wet look.
- Use wet glue and dry glitter for decorating without a shiny look.
- Add glaze to glitter or paint to add a dimensional look.
On the photo above, I've illustrated four different ways to design a moon and bat embellishment.
Using a paint brush, glitter glue from a tube, and some glaze, I combined everything in a paper cupcake liner. These are inexpensive and a way to mix wet glue and glaze without making a mess all over your work station.
I painted one small area on the side of each moon, and completely covered each bat with the mixture. I let them all dry. Then I played around with the small and large bats, and tried out different ways to make them work for the scene I drafted earlier.
Step five. Use chalk or marker to color in embellishments.
Once the glittering is done, think about which embellishments could use a little highlighting with chalk or markers. Inking is also a way to highlight edges.
Step six. Adhesives.
Finding the right adhesives for paper art can be tricky.
First, when creating items that will display photos, such as a Halloween greeting card, keep in mind that any adhesive used needs to be photo safe, archival safe, photo quality, acid free, lignin free, etc. These are terms that are commonly used in scrapbook advertisements. It means that no harm will come to a photo adhered with those types of products.
When working with a Halloween goody bag design, unless you are interested in keeping one for your memory album, it may not be important to you to use a archival safe adhesive.
There are many different kinds on the market.
Here are a few I keep stashed in my art studio:
- Glue dots
- Foam squares, with double-sided adhesive
- Double-sided tape
- Glue sticks, permanent
- Scrapbook glue
Some glazing products also have adhesive qualities.
For the fabric embellishments that were used in this particular Halloween goody bag, any of those adhesives mentioned above would have most likely soaked through the fabric and caused an unsightly stain.
Therefore, when working with fabric squares, fabric flowers, of fabric embellishments of any kind, there is a product which will bind fabric to many surfaces including paper.
Iron-on adhesive known as HeatnBond works well for the following types of materials:
I purchased a roll of 10 yards at a craft store. To apply it to an embellishment, simply measure and cut the amount needed. Then iron in a two-step process. First, iron the HeatnBond to the embellishment, then iron the embellishment on to the project.
HeatnBond creates a permanent bond. Therefore, it's great for craft projects where a fabric element is being introduced to paper.
Step seven. Add finishing touches.
When all of the embellishments are glittered, chalked, inked, and adhered, the final step is touching up any spots that could use more depth.
In this particular project, I decided to add glitter over the top of the moon to give the appearance of a Halloween night. I added a touch of silver to the underline of the bat die cut. I also used a prominent glitter to highlight the side of the moon to give it a highlighted look.
Here are some suggestions for finding fabric to embellish paper with.
- Joann Fabrics, Walmart, and other craft stores sell fabric in a package or by the yard.
- Choose fabric with designs that can be cut out without having to cut part of the scene.
- Find inexpensive fabrics at the end of each season on clearance.
- Some sellers sell lots of leftover printed fabric online.
Here are some suggestions for finding die cut embellishments.
- There are many sellers online who create unique die cut shapes, or plain ones.
- It's not necessary to buy an entire machine at such a high cost when you can purchase a single die cut shape already cut out from someone who owns the machines.
- Before I purchased my die cut machines, I bought die cut shapes at local craft stores and online.
- Because machines are always evolving, it might be best to purchase a few online first and then see which machine you like best before investing money in one.
It probably seems like a lot of work to make goody bags for one holiday. But, it's also a great deal of fun! Children love craft time. This is one way of incorporating some child-friendly fun in to a rainy fall day or on a chilly weekend when it's too dreary to play outside.
When I make these goody bags, I place tissue paper in each one and fill them with a selection of candy and trinkets.
However, be mindful of children that may not be able to tell the difference between a piece of candy and an eraser. If I mix goodies such as candy, pencils, stickers and erasers, I will usually wrap the school supplies in a separate baggy before placing it in with the candy.
I hope you have learned some new tips here in this article. I would love to hear your favorite tricks!