From DIY home decor to handmade gifts, here are the best arts and crafts to spark your creativity

Gift Bags From Cereal Boxes

If you're tired of paying for Disney themed gift bags or other lame new $6.00 gift bags, this cheap and creative instructable is for you. Your friends will love you for it — because you are just too cool.

Not Too Girly Version

This is an example of what a map, duct tape and paper clips can look like as a gift bag. Try using the covers of Cabela's catalogue, Guns and Ammo, Field and Stream, etc. to make gift bags look a little more masculine.

Anyway — let's get started!

Eat Some Cereal

You'll need to finish your Wheaties or whatever breakfast cereal you like.

For this project you'll need: box, scissors, a hole punch, tape, and suitable papers for recycling. I use maps, old sheets of music, newspaper comics, and magazine covers.

Cut Off the Box Top

It doesn't really matter whether the box top is cut completely straight. Your paper will cover the edges.

Cut Your Papers

You can follow the meridian lines of maps, and the staff notes of sheet music for straight cuts. But if you are talented with scissors you can probably cut anything!

Step 1: Tape the Paper to the Box

Just like any gift box, you'll tape it down the center.

Wrapping the Box, Step 2: Triangles!

The top ends are easier to push inside the box if you cut the paper ends into triangles. Here I am cutting from the center edge of the map on one edge to the corner of the top of the box.

Step 3: Finish the Cuts

Here you just repeat what you did on the left — cut from the center edge of your paper to the other box corner. Now you have an isosceles triangle or something like that. Then you fold the triangle you've created and fold it inside the box. How neatly you have finished this step!

Complete this step on all four sides of the box.

You've Finished the Wrapping

Here's what your wrapped box looks like now.

Punch Four Holes

Take your handy hole punch and make 2 holes on the top edge of the front of your box and two holes just like that on the back of your box. These holes allow you to add handles for your gift box.

Make and Attach Your Handles

Yet another opportunity to show off how darn creative you are.

You can use ribbons, twine, rope, or whatever you want to create your handles. I've used ribbons (what I've kept from gifts I've received), duct tape folded into strips, cut electrical cords from broken lamps — you get the picture.

Assuming you use ribbon: you've got 2 ribbons. You'll thread them through the holes. Take one ribbon and thread it into the left front hole and you knot it securely. Repeat for the right front hole. Now, take your second ribbon and do the same.

Add Special Touches at Top

For my map box, I added orange paper clips to the edge (see Step #1). The orange clips complements the orange tissue paper I was using for my friend who works for the Dept. of Transportation who wears orange vests on the job.

For the sheet music box, I cut a strip from a magazine and cut one edge with fancy-schmancy decorative scissors.

Draw on Your Gift Box

You could write greetings, seasonal or occasion words, scandalous suggestions, or a simple "to you" and "from me".

I used a Sharpie marker to draw directions to someone's house on my Map Gift Box. I wasn't very neat about it. My friend thinks my messy writing is an endearing creative quirk.

You Are Done!

Give your friend or relative the gift inside the gift bag you made. If you used recycled materials like I do, you've had some fun while creating a one of a kind thoughtful wrap job.


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