Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I Spy: The Ultimate Gift Bag

I was trying to come up with a small toy item for my kids for the holidays that didn't cost much and would be fun for more than just the "newness" moments. I saw I Spy bags on Etsy (THE place to shop for handmade items) and thought the concept was so clever. Ideal for when you have to wait somewhere with kids or quiet time and it's always a new experience. My husband wasn't convinced they would be a hit, so I thought to try for the low risk, low expense option & make them myself. Turns out that's the ideal move. I had TONS of scrap fabric from past projects, lots of little trinkets to include and they aren't hard to make. Ironically while I was looking up how to make them, my 6 yr old caught a glance and went "wow...what are those" and proceeded to ask for one, so I'm pretty sure this will go over well.

Basically you just make a little pillow, but make a little window in it and stitch a piece of see-through vinyl in. I'm not big on vinyl, but there aren't many other options, so I choose the cheapest/safest and cut up some from one of those bags bedding comes in I had in the basement that have no plastic-y smell. For filler you can use dried beans or polypropylene (safe #5 plastic) pellets from the craft store. I made a Wall-E one since it seems appropriate (kids finding stuff, Wall-E likes finding stuff). Yes there is a plastic toilet in it (top right corner with the yellow lid) - it was from my 80s charm necklace. If you grew up in the 80s you know what I'm talking about - the ones that you hooked a bazillion plastic charms to and practically weighed you down because it was so heavy with stuff. That necklace has given me enough stuff to make A LOT more bags.

If you want to be really professional looking, get some inkjet fabric sheets (craft store) and type up the list of stuff to find and attach it to the back. Discovering those sheets is opening up even more crafting ideas. These were so much fun to do, I made some for my niece & nephew and one to take to my Holistic Moms Network handmade gift swap tomorrow. By using mostly stuff I already had each bag probably cost about $3 to make, so you can't beat that for hours of entertainment that's portable.


  1. What a cool idea.

    Hmm, I had a silver charm bracelet, but never had a toilet hanging from it...

  2. I added a link to some pictures of them. Apparently I wasn't the only one with the toilet. Just wish the coke bottle one didn't dry up - that was my favorite and would be awesome in an I Spy bag.

  3. Nice job - looks like you used fleece - very nice! :)


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