Fill this make-it-in-minutes Santa Sack with real gifts for under the tree. The larger drawstring sack is not only great as a gift bag, but t's the right size to use as a pillowcase or a laundry bag. The Elf Sack is for a smaller stash of treasures (all elves know great things come in small packages).

Materials for Santa Sack:

  • 1 yard cotton print
  • 1-1/3 yards 7/8"-wide polyester ribbon
  • Water-soluble marking pen

Santa Sack finished size: 30x20" (fits a standard-size bed pillow)

Materials for Elf Sack:

  • 1 yard cotton print
  • 1-1/3 yards 7/8"-wide polyester ribbon
  • Water-soluble marking pen

Elf Sack finished size: 15x22-1/2"

Yardages and cutting instructions are based on 42" of usable fabric width. Measurements include 1/2" seam allowances. Sew with wrong (unprinted) sides together.

Cut Fabric for Santa Sack:

From cotton print, cut:

  • 1--35-1/2x41" rectangle

Cut Fabric for Elf Sack:

From cotton print, cut:

  • 1--28x31" rectangle

Assemble the Sack:

1. Using water-soluble pen, make marks wrong side on one long edge of rectangle 7-1/2" from top edge, 8-1/2" from top edge, and 1/2" above bottom edge.


2. With right sides together, fold the Santa Sack rectangle in half to make a 35-1/2x20-1/2" rectangle. (Fold the Elf Sack rectangle in half to make a 28x15-1/2" rectangle.) With markings facing up, pin long edges together and across short end at bottom of rectangle.


3. Sew along pinned edges using a 1/2" seam allowance. When you reach the dot marked 7-1/2" from top edge, stop stitching and backstitch. Cut threads. Resume stitching (beginning with a backstitch) at marked 8-1/2" dot, leaving a 1" gap in stitching. The gap in the seam will form the opening for the ribbon casing.

4. Continue sewing along long edge. At bottom corner stop with needle down in the fabric when you reach the dot 1/2" from bottom. Lift the presser foot and pivot the fabric and continue sewing across the bottom of the bag.

5. Press side seam allowance open.


6. Turn under top 5" of bag to inside; press.


7. Open up pressed edge. Press under cut edge 1/2" for hem.


8. Refold to inside at 5" mark with 1/2" edges still turned under; pin.


9. Sew bag top 4-1/4" from top edge to secure folded hem. Make sure you're not sewing the bag shut.


10.  Turn bag right side out; press flat.

Add the Drawstring

1.  Stitch two more rows 2-1/2" and 3-1/2" from top edge. The opening in the seam should fall between these two rows to make the ribbon casing.


2.  Using a large safety pin at one end of the ribbon length, thread ribbon through the casing opening. Keep ribbon as flat as possible as you pull it through stitched casing and bring it back out through opening to make drawstring.


3.  To prevent drawstring from being pulled out accidentally, pull ends through casing so both ribbon ends are sticking out evenly; use the large safety pin to pin ends together. Machine-stitch through the middle of the casing (opposite the opening) to secure the drawstring in place.