This year I went super simple and made these little sacks, each filled with a selection of chocolates and tied up with a little salt dough tag with the recipients initials.
This DIY is very easy and very cheap. The bags are versatile enough to be used at any time of year- I just made them christmassy with some red ribbon!
Ribbon and twine.
To make the tags:
1. I followed a really simple recipe for salt dough, simply 1 cup flour to 1/2 a cup of salt and 1/2 a cup of water. Mix and knead this until you have a smooth pliable dough. Roll the dough to about a quarter of an inch thick and then cut out circles with a biscuit cutter. Using a straw, punch a hole in the top of each circle.
Salt dough takes a while to harden. I just put them in the bottom of our AGA all day. Basically place them somewhere on a really low heat to dry out. Don't cook them!
2. Once your salt dough tags are rock hard it is your chance to decorate. Salt dough takes any kind of paint so you can go crazy! I simply brushed on some white accrylic paint with a bit of tissue. I then stamped the initial of each of the recipients onto the tag when the paint was dry.
To make the sacks:
1. Each sack uses a piece of hessian about 8" x 4". My sacks were very roughly cut though as I figured that I was going for a rustic look (its a great excuse for wonky sewing!).
2. Hessian frays really easily so to try and prevent this I quickly sewed a zig zag stitch around all the edges.
3. To make the top of your sack nice and neat, take one of the shorter sides of material and fold it over about 1/4 of an inch. Using a straight stitch hem down this side. Repeat on the other end of material.
4. Fold the material right sides (the neat looking sides) together so that the hemmed edges meet. Using a straight stitch again sew each side of the sack. There is no need to sew the bottom as it is folded.
5. At this stage you can leave the sack as it is but I think it looks nicer if you "box" the bottom. Doing this will make the sack stand up on its own.
6. Holding the sack with the open end at the top, push down until one of the bottom corners folds into a triangle.
7. Pin across like this. Repeat on the other corner.
8. Sew a line just below this pin like so.
9. Your sack should now look like a little animal with funny ears!
10. Turn the sack inside out and voila! You have a sack with a lovely square bottom ready to be filled. These little bags hold about four 'quality street' sized chocolates.
10. To decorate thread your salt dough tag onto some twine and wrap it around the neck of the sack.
11. Add your ribbon and tie a bow to finish.
I think these bags would look sweet at any occasion. You could even make one for each day of advent, you could fill them with treats for valentines day or just leave it for someone to find. They don't even need a tag!
Do you make anything to decorate the table with on Christmas day?