Saturday, June 18, 2011

A Favorite Teacher Gift

The perfect teacher's gift... something that you can put a little love into. Something creative, personal and useful.  How about a shopping tote, decorated in your teacher's favorite color with a photo of the class, her/his name, and some words of gratitude?

Value packs of tote bags can be found at fabric stores for about $8.50 per three pack, or online.  While you're at the fabric store, check out the beaded trims.  Your female teacher may be a *bling* gal and appreciate an extra bit of style.  Three yards of trim was enough for four bags for my project.

Attach the trim to each bag with a fancy stitch. I used wide zig zag to make sure the bling stayed put.

Next you'll need a class photo.  Adjust it in Publisher to get the size/framing you need.  Add a text box for your special words of gratitude and the teacher's name, if you have space.  In previous years, I used an individual shot from each kid rather than a class photo.   This is pretty easy to do if the kids are lined up already, like if they are waiting at field day or a field trip. You can really capture their individual personalities that way.  Then put those individual shots together against a pretty backdrop.
I LOVE Avery's printable fabric for this project. Print your project out on the fabric, then iron it on. No fuss! A drawback though is it's expense. At the local office supply store, the 5 pack is $15.  Maybe better deals online?

The last step is to add words or decoration with fabric paint. I like to seal the outside edge with something sparkly. If you haven't added words already, fabric paint is an easy way to get the teacher's name and date on the bag.

Decorated tote bags make great gifts for anyone on your list, not just teachers, and they are fun to put together.  Everyone we've given them to has really enjoyed them!


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