Used Sandwich Bag=Pretty Christmas Ornament (I Swear!)

Ironed Plastic Ornament on the TreeJust as I never buy paper napkins and yet I always seem to have some, I never buy sandwich bags and yet…I always seem to have some. My daughter brings one home with a treat from the class birthday party. Her friend brings one over with a snack to share during their playdate. I buy some dried spearmint to make spearmint tea, and the shopkeeper measures it out into a tiny little sandwich bag.

And I’m sorry, friends–I just cannot wash these things out and reuse them. Ever since I was pregnant with Willow, my gag reflex has just been on a hair trigger. Know what I can do, though? Heat them up, make them pretty, and throw them on the Christmas tree. It’s like this fusing plastic bags project, only with glitter! Don’t believe me? Watch and see.

Stuffing the sandwich bagYou will need: used but clean-ish sandwich bag, pretties to put inside it (thin and flat, please!), parchment paper, iron, cutting template (may I suggest a cookie cutter?), scissors, hole punch

1. Stuff some pretties into your sandwich bag. When my girls and I do this, we use tissue paper left over from previous presents, glitter, very small bits of broken crayons, and very small scraps of fabric or felted wool. Try telling this to my kids, but less really is more–keep your stuffing very thin, with plenty of empty spots.

Sandwich your sandwich bag between two sheets of parchment paper2. Flatten all the air out of your sandwich bag, then seal it shut.

3. Lay a generous sheet of parchment paper down on your ironing surface, put your sandwich bag down on that, then put another sheet of parchment paper on top.

4. With your iron set to low or medium-low, iron over the top sheet of parchment paper until the plastic of the sandwich bag melts together. Keep your iron moving so that you don’t scorch your stuffing, and check often to see if the plastic has melted. You don’t want to overdo, or you basically just have a flat, melty blob of plastic and stuff (not terribly different from what you’re supposed to end up with, but anyway…)

Finished ornamentsNOTE: If your parchment paper is stuck to the melted plastic, just let the whole thing cool down and then it will peel off.

5. Peel away the parchment paper to reveal your flat, melty blob.

6. Using your cutting template, trace out some ornament shapes and then cut them out with sturdy scissors.

NOTE: If your stuffing was thick at an edge that you’re cutting, it might peel a bit–just stick some clear glue there and dominate it back into submission.

7. Punch out a hole for an ornament hanger, and throw that baby up there!

Is this my most redneck project yet, or what? I swear, though, my family was having a pretty redneck Christmas already (this is redneck, and this is REALLY redneck).

Do y’all do any redneck Christmas projects, too, or is it just me?

Written by Julie Finn

I'm a writer, crafter, Zombie Preparedness Planner, and homeschooling momma of two kids who will hopefully someday transition into using their genius for good, not the evil machinations and mess-making in which they currently indulge. I'm interested in recycling and nature crafts, food security, STEM education, and the DIY lifestyle, however it's manifested--making myself some underwear out of T-shirts? Done it. Teaching myself guitar? Doing it right now.

Visit my blog Craft Knife for a peek at our very weird handmade homeschool life; my etsy shop Pumpkin+Bear for a truly odd number of rainbow-themed beeswax pretties; and my for links to articles about poverty, educational politics, and this famous cat who lives in my neighborhood.

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  1. Phew! When you’re from the South, even if you grow up and move away, you never really know if something you’re doing is totally redneck or not, cause, you know, YOU’RE redneck.

    Like the first time Matt saw me eating gravy. From a crockpot. Which was in the lobby of a motel. I was all, “What? It’s breakfast!”

  2. hi been browsing thru and would like to do something with 2-3yr old toddlers and empty yoghurt pots or little plastic bottles of yoghurt drink. any ideas please. really love the idea of melted plastic shapes. can you use normal plastic bags? tks

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