In this tutorial, I’m showing you how to make large, quick, easy, and affordable paper bag snowflakes using lunch bags. I’m also turning one of them into a 3D paper snowflake lantern using fairy lights.
If you’ve been following me for a while then you know that I love snowflakes. I recently made the snowflake canvas art and a couple of years ago I made fanned posterboard snowflakes for our tree decor with a free downloadable cutting file.
I love how easy these large paper bag snowflakes are to make and they are the perfect last-minute decor and craft to do with your family before Christmas
How to make large 3D paper bag snowflakes using lunch bags
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- 9 lunch bags for one paper bag snowflake (white or natural brown) – I used brown because I wanted them to be a contrast to my ivory curtains
- craft glue
- clothing pins or little clamps
- fairy lights (optional) – I used fairy lights and not regular Christmas lights because I love the look and they also don’t get hot like standard strands of light bulbs. Please don’t leave the lights on unattended since they could get hot if torn at spots. And I’m definitely not responsible for anything that might happen!!!
My tips for making Paper bag snowflakes:
- I do not like using hot glue for several reasons:
A. Kids can get burned way too easily
B. The glued center lines get way too thick and sometimes the hot glue dries too fast
C. The snowflake gets a lot heavier with hot glue than standard craft glue
- I don’t like using glue sticks because the glue lines get too wide.
- Clear or white liquid craft glue word the best to make paper bag snowflakes.
- Combine the lunch paper bags with smaller sized snack bags for size variety.
- Try out different colored paper bags. I’ve used white paper lunch bags and black paper bags that are white in the inside.
- I like gluing the bags the night before and letting them dry overnight before cutting but that’s optional.
- Use comand hooks to hang the stars on your walls and a piece of twine to hang them on your curtain rod.
Here is my video to show you the process and below are the steps in photos:
Music credit: Oh, Little Town of Bethlehem Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License
Start out by gluing the 9 lunch bags together. The glue line looks like a T as shown in the below image. One thin line at the bottom of the bag and one line going up the center of the bag.
Place another bag on top of the glue line and keep repeating until all the bags are stacked and glued.
Use clothing pins, clips, or little clamps to keep the center glue line tight on the entire stack. (This step is optional but helps) You can also use something heavy as a weight to make sure everything glues together nicely.
Open up the paper bag fan to make sure the bags separate and open properly before you get to the cutting part.
You can also use a stapler to secure some of the top edges
Draw on the snowflake pattern as shown.
Cut the snowflake pattern with strong scissors. If you are doing this with kids then they might need help with this step.
It is ok to cut a few layers of the bags at a time if you can’t cut them all at once.
Here is one option of how you can cut the pattern. You can also round the top or add other nudges to the sides.
6 different paper snowflake template examples
Below are some patterns that you can use to cut the sides of the paper bags. Don’t worry about messing up or being completely even and symmetrical. These paper bag snowflakes are super forgiving which is another reason they are such a great craft for kids.
Just have fun with the different patterns and different shapes!
Lastly, you need to glue the final edge by applying a thin layer of glue.
Fan the snowflake out into a 3D shape and attach the edges with a stapler.
In the end, you poke a hole on one edge and add a string to the hole to be able to hang the paper bag snowflake.
If you want to turn the 3D paper bag snowflakes into lanterns then you can watch my video to see how to do so.
Photos of finished paper bag snowflakes
My DIY pampas grass Christmas tree with paper bag snowflakes:
Small and large white and brown paper bag snowflakes in our kitchen:
Black and white paper bag stars in our basement bar area:
And here are my other snowflake DIYs…
Click HERE for the DIY artwork
and HERE for the small snowflake ornaments
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Happy Holidays!