Fill this vintage-style Valentine Bag with chocolates, candy
hearts, or celery (if you are so inclined) for your sweetie! The heart
of this classy gift bag is a plain, lunch-size brown paper bag. Add a
vintage image by Margaret Evans Price
(1888-1973), and some home-made
paper lace. The aged gift tag is the "key" to the whole design!
Margaret Evans Price sold her first illustrated story at the age of 12,
and went on to become a very successful free-lance illustrator. In
1930, she and her husband, Irving Price, partnered with Herman Fisher
to found Fisher-Price Toys. As the company's first art director, she
designed some of the signature products, while continuing to create
original artwork for galleries and publications.
We treated the vintage image with a paper tole technique, which means a
dimensional layering of image elements. This is a simple craft to
reproduce, and you can play around with the styling and embellishing.
Add your own touches like glitter, ribbons, rubber stamps or maybe some
small embossed keys!
Matte photo paper or white card stock, 8.5" x 11".
Cardstock, red and brown, 8.5" x 11".
Paper bag, lunch size, about 6 " x 4" x 12" (See Tips).
Wired ribbon, red, 22" x 5/8".
Double-stick tape, spray glue or glue stick.
Foam mounting squares or tape.
Hole punches, 1/8" and 1/4".
Decorative-edge scissors, large scallops.
Detail scissors or manicure scissors.
images on matte photo paper or white card stock. Trim one of
the rectangular postcard images with a paper cutter. Trim, as a single
piece, the woman and heart shape from the second postcard image, using
detail scissors. While you are at it, trim one of the "key" tags with
detail scissors, and punch a 1/4" hole at the top. (We gave you two
copies of the tag image, just for fun!)
5-6 foam mounting squares to the back of the trimmed image of the
woman and heart. Align it directly over the similar figure on the full
postcard image, and press them together. If you want deeper dimension,
double the thickness of the foam squares.
Cut two pieces of red card stock, 4 1/2" x 6 1/2" and 4" x 6".
Cut two pieces of brown card stock the same sizes. The larger pieces
are the mats for the vintage image. The small pieces will fold like a
sleeve over the
top of the bag.
Using the scalloped decorative scissors, trim away 1/4" inch from
all four sides of the large brown (4 1/2" x 6 1/2") piece (keep those
scallop bumps facing out!). You might want to pencil in a small
guideline on the back, to keep you cutting a straight line.
the small 1/8" hole punch to punch a hole within each scallop
bump, like an eyelet in a piece of crochet-work. You may want to put a
small pencil dot on the back of the paper to help you position the hole
punch, to prevent dreaded "wandering hole" syndrome. This is your
"lace" mat that will be behind the vintage image.
Glue (or double-stick tape) the brown card stock "lace" in the
center of the red 4 1/2" x 6 1/2" mat. Leave an even red border around
the scalloped mat. Glue the layered postcard image in the center of the
brown scalloped mat and allow to dry. Glue the mats to the front of the
Now for the "lace" sleeve over the top of the bag. Use the
scalloped decorative scissors
to trim away 1/4" from the two long (6") sides of the small (4" x 6")
brown card stock. Keep those scallop bumps out again.
Use the small 1/8" hole punch to punch a hole in each scallop
bump, as you did on the mat.
Glue (or double-stick tape) the brown paper "lace" in the center
of the red 4" x 6" card stock, so the scalloped edges are equally
spaced from the edges of the red card stock. Allow to dry.
With a bone folder, score and fold the layered card stock in half
lengthwise. Trim away the top of the bag, if you want it shorter. Place
the closed top of the bag between the folded sides of the card stock
sleeve. Mark and trim away excess cardstock if it is wider than the
bag. Punch two 1/4" holes through the sleeve and the bag, about 1" to
each side of the center point.
At this crucial turning point, you must remember to put something in the bag. Something
surprising, delicious, cuddly, or deep fried.
Close up the bag, place the sleeve over the top, and line up the
punched holes agin. Feed the two ends of the ribbon through the holes
from the back. Feed the "key" gift tag onto the ribbon and tie the
ribbon into a small bow!
This is a Valentine Bag that will be delightful before and after
the gift is revealed! Remember, embellish away with glitter, inks, or
whatever you've been dying to try.
Brown paper lunch bags come in several sizes, but generally they
are about 5 1/2" wide, 3 3/4" deep, and 10" high. You can usually find
them in packages of 40 or 50 among the food storage items at the
grocery store. Our bag was about 1/2" larger than the norm, and
ambitiously labeled "giant size."