A few days ago my daughter and I learned how to make recycled Tyvek gift bags at the Gates Foundation Discovery Center Giving Marketplace.
I was volunteering to (wo)man a table for the Salaam Cultural Museum Medical Missions as the director had just had surgery. I found out she needed help when we were talking about donating sales from my Arabic Alphabet Coloring Book to help her refugee causes.
I also brought henna supplies to write people’s names in Arabic on their hands. It was a fun activity and I think I’ll offer it at other upcoming shows. We were able to raise almost $100 for refugees from the henna alone.
The Discovery Center had some activities for adults and children in the back, one of which included making a reusable gift bag from recycled Tyvek.
According to Wikipedia, Tyvek “is a synthetic material, often seen used as housewrap, to protect buildings during construction. The material is very strong; it is difficult to tear but can easily be cut with scissors or a knife. Water vapor can pass through Tyvek, but liquid water cannot. All of these properties make Tyvek useful in a variety of applications.”
It was a lively activity because there were many other creative people at the table, making their gift bags at the same time.
I took photos of our process in case you want to try making these at home.
We started by folding over the Tyvek so that it overlapped.
Next we used the duct tape in the middle and tucked in the ends.
We added a fold into the bottom of our bag that created two large Vs on each side.
Again, we made the two sides overlap and taped them down. Before adding the duct tape, we used the stapler to give the bottom extra support.
To finishes off the bag, we folded over the top. We used the hole punch to make the holes for the ribbon handles, which we added with a knot inside.
The final step was to decorate the outside of the bag, and of course we choose a khatam design. Khatam is the Arabic word for eight point star, and very easy to make with a square template. Simply drawn in the square, offset another square and eight points are made.
This is our completed bag.
If you enjoyed making this gift bag, stop by these others we have made
Be sure to visit A Crafty Arab on Pinterst to see more tutorials that use recycle materials.