Sandwich and snack bags

I have been wanting to make a snack bag and a sandwich bag for a while now. I really wanted to do it after this first week of school. I am going through the plastic sandwich bags like no one’s business. Between her morning snack and her lunch (sandwich and three additional snacks) I am using at least 5 plastic bags a day.

I wanted to make one for Thing 2 for the car. I am one of the parents guilty of throwing cereal or a snack in a baggie and heading out the door for church, errands or to pick up Thing 1. He needed something that would hold a lot of snacks and one of those bags needed to be laminated on two sides because that is the bag that I will be using to throw grapes in (he LOVES grapes.)

I read through several tutorials on how to make these. I ended up having to sort of create my own pattern for Thing 2’s double laminated draw string snack bag. Most of the tutorials I read through use velcro for the closures. For the double laminated bag, I wanted it to have a drawstring closure so I could snap it on his car seat and he could carry it on his wrist. He is still 2 and needs something that will make more sense for his age. So, before I begin trying to explain how I did what I did, let me tell you I am not a pattern designer or a professional seamstress (never had a class in my life) and for the most part I just eye ball everything. I sew for fun. If you are a person who needs exact measurements then keep looking- this is not the tutorial for you. I tried to take as many pictures as I could to show you what I am doing. I hope this tutorial makes sense to you.

As you will see in the pictures of Thing 2’s double laminated draw string bag, I used the seam ripper quiet a few times. Because I did not have a pattern and I was trying to feel my way through this, I made LOTS of mistakes… in the end, I got it to be what I wanted it to be and HE LOVES IT!!! He has been requesting all of his meals and snacks to be put inside those bags 🙂

Before you begin there are some things you should consider. There is a lot of controversy surrounding these snack bags and if they are safe to use. If you decide to line your bag with Vinyl please do your homework and research which vinyl you think is safe, don’t take my word for it. Here is a link that a friend on Twitter, Grace Faith and Glory, (visit her shop on Etsy! http://www.etsy.com/shop/gracefaithandglory) shared with me concerning the vinyl that I chose to use for my bags. The second question down asks about the safety of the vinyl that I used.  Here is my take on this, if you like these bags but are scared of the safety of using them with food, then make them and use them as a slip cover over your baggies to dress up your child’s lunch. If you make them with vinyl, please use common sense. Don’t store food in these bags overnight or for long periods of time. Clean them after each use… you know basic stuff.

Also another thing to consider, I made these specifically for lunches and snacks, but feel free to get creative with these. Make coupon holders, make up bags, a pencil holder… don’t limit yourself to just sandwich and snack bags 🙂 Most of all have fun!

Materials needed:

Sewing Machine
1/2 yard Fabric of Choice
Thread of choice
Rotary cuter or scissors
(embroidery machine if desired)
Cord or ribbon of choice if making a draw string bag
Velcro
Iron and ironing board
Iron on Vinyl

Double laminated drawstring snack bag:
1. Lay your fabric out.
2. You can laminate your whole piece of fabric (if making many snack bags) or only laminate out the pieces of fabric that you are using to make the bag. This step is up to you.
3. To help you estimate the size of the snack bag, place a plastic baggie over your material to see how large of a pice you will need to cut. Make sure that you cut it larger than the plastic baggie because you will loose some width and length when you sew your two pieces together. Cut out your two pieces of fabric and vinyl. If your squares are smaller than a baggie, this is fine. Who fills a whole plastic bag full of snacks for a child anyway 🙂 Portion size is cute (like mine) 🙂

4. Iron the vinyl on both sides of the fabric following the directions on the package.

 5. Fold down the top edges of the two squares that you cut out and sew across the length of the squares- make sure you leave enough room for your draw string.
6. Cut a piece of cord long enough to fit through the slots you created in both bags. If you need to, push it through your slots before cutting it. You don’t want your cord to be too long because you want it to become a drawstring and do it’s job to close the bag. I was using some a stiff decorative piece of rope but I still had trough getting it through my slots. I pushed it in there as far as I could then I used a chop stick (a pin or a Kabob skewer would work as well) to push it all the way through.

You should have a loop on one side (bottom picture) and two strings hanging out on the other side (top picture)

7. Place your squares with what will be the outside of the fabric facing each other. You should not see the pretty side of your fabric. Line up your squares and start sewing down the edges. You will need to sew down the rope on the side where the rope is not looped. This will prevent the rope from coming out of your bag.
**DO NOT SEW OVER THE LOOP ON THE OPPOSITE SIDE**

(Ignore how messy my bag is. I made a lot of mistakes trying to figure out how to make this work) Your bag won’t have that top row of messy holes from using the seam ripper a few dozen times 🙂

When you are done, it should look similar to the picture above. Notice you can see my seam go over the ropes on the top and not the bottom. I stopped sewing and backstitched at the seam that I created for the top of the bag in step 5.

8. Flip your bag inside out and try it out! You are done!

*Note if you are double laminating, it will look a little wrinkly and used. That’s the price you will pay to  double laminate your bag*

Velcro Closure Snack bag:

Repeat steps 1-5 but on step five you don’t need to worry about leaving room for your rope.

For Thing 1’s snack bags I did not double laminate. She’s older and I will not be packing grapes or anything wet in these bags for her to take to school. I will still use baggies for her wet stuff.

Be creative with your shapes. I made one using an envelope.

6. If you plan to monogram your snack bag, do it before you cut your shape. You will need the material to be long and wide enough to fit your machine.

6. Sew down the top edge. Place your squares with the pretty side of the fabric facing each other. Line up your squares and start sewing down the edges. Turn your bag inside out.
7. Put your velcro in place where you want it. You can sew down your velcro if you wish.

                                       

8. Now admire your work!

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