I’ve kept calendars and day planners for the last 14 years. As an order-craving person, my calendars and planners keep me on task, on time and on schedule. Bills are paid, writing deadlines are met, doctor’s appointments are kept and the dogs get taken in for their annual, all on account of my fastidious devotion to chronicling what’s ahead. A quick glance at my calendar tells me when the moon will be full, what crops to plant at what time and all of the holidays in store each month. In the interest of full disclosure, I also used it to successfully become a mom, but that’s a whole other story . . .
While it’s entirely possible these days to rely exclusively on digital, online calendars, I still prefer mine served up old school, complete with theme (“Wild Mushrooms”? Check. “The Fairest Fowl“? Naturally. “The Wisdom of Trees“? Got it.) and attendant captivating imagery. When it’s time to purchase the new year’s calendar or planner, I typically recycle the previous one (or use it as gift wrap). Recently though, my husband and I, in our constant attempts to “reuse” instead of simply recycle, devised another way to revitalize our outdated copies. For today’s Small Measures with Ashley, I’m offering up DIY gift bags fashioned from the pages of your spent calendars. Easier than you can imagine, these gift bags are an ideal means of keeping the good times (and time-keeping) going. — Ashley
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- calendar pages (the stiffer the page, the better)
- lightweight wooden board
- cord (to be used for handles; I actually used cord that I cut off of old gift bags that I wasn’t too fond of)
- X-Acto knife
- hole punch
- hole-reinforcement stickers
1. For the front and back of the bag (the large sides of the bag), cut panels out of calendar pages the height and width that you want your bag to be.
2. Cut a lightweight wooden board 1-inch shorter than the width of the front and back panels (this will be your “floor” panel). The board can be as wide as you like. A 6-inch-wide board works well.
3. Cut the side panels out of additional calendar pages the same width of the board and the same height as the front and back panels.
4. Make a 1/2-inch crease folded away from the image on both sides of the front and back panels.
5. Line up the bottom and top of the front panel with one of the side panels. Glue the side panel inside the crease of the front panel. Do the same for the back panel and remaining side panel. Let the glue set.
6. Place the glued-together front and side panels on the board, lining up with the corner.
9. Glue the creases of the unconnected two corners together. Let the glue set.
10. Using a single-hole punch, punch holes in to the front and back panels a few inches apart, about a 1/2-inch below the top of the bag. Place reinforcement stickers over the holes.
11. Thread the holes with cord to make handles of your desired length. Tie knots on the ends of the cord to secure (do this on the interior of the bag).
There you have it. From wall calendar to unique gift bag in a jiffy. Bear in mind that, while not industrial strength (i.e., don’t put barbells in them! Think more lightweight items, such as a garment), these bags are a lovely means of repurposing a material while creating a one-of-a-kind gift.
What about you? Got any calendar-repurposing tricks up your sleeve? I’d love to hear about them.