Source: Martha Stewart Kids, Volume 15 2004

Introduction

Make lunchtime even more appetizing by decorating kids' lunch bags or boxes with cheery stickers and labels. Some can serve a purpose -- personalizing plain containers or sealing sacks shut -- others are purely for fun.

They're quick and simple to make with a computer and printer, a scanner, or a color copier, plus easy-to-find supplies. With the same tools, you can make a chart that lets kids help plan what to pack. Download or copy our designs, or create your own.

Scanning Basics
Kids can scan their own designs. For items that are curved, such as marbles or carrots, lay a piece of paper over them before scanning; they will show up better. Print the scanned image on regular paper until it looks just the way you want (a parent can adjust contrast or brightness if necessary). Then print it out on the label. If scanning food, be sure to clean the scanner when you're done.

materials

  • Fabric

  • Metal or plastic lunch box

  • Iron

  • Computer with scanner

  • Clear or white water-resistant labels

  • Glue

  • Scissors

  • Avery mailing labels

steps

  1. Personalize a lunch box with a few favorite things. Scan an object (we tried toy cars and a real sandwich); then, if you'd like, add a name to the image.

  2. Print out on clear or white water-resistant labels (you can wipe them clean) for ink-jet printers. Cut out, and stick onto a metal or plastic box. A little note from Mom or Dad slipped in with lunch is a sweet gesture.

  3. Photocopy or print designs onto precut stickers, or print onto sheets of sticker paper and cut out. Affix to a lunch bag for a fun midday surprise.

  4. Use our rectangular labels to seal bags closed. Print them on white sticker paper, and cut out labels. Or print directly onto white 2" x 4" mailing labels (Avery Label #8253).

  5. Use our round labels to add extra "flavor." Print them on white sticker paper, and cut out labels. Or print directly to 1 1/2 " round stickers (Avery Label #8293).

  6. When using with avery labels, be sure to check your printer settings before printing onto precut stickers. The templates will work best if the printer is not set to shrink or expand the PDF to fit the page. The wording for this may vary slightly according to the type of printer you use.

  7. Decorate a fabric lunch sack with a self-portrait. Scan a drawing into the computer, and print it out on an iron-on transfer that's specifically made for color fabric.

  8. Cut out the picture (make the corners curved, not pointy, and the transfer will stay on better). An adult should iron the transfer onto the lunch bag, following the instructions included with the product (with nylon, be sure to use a medium-hot setting, and insert a piece of cardboard inside the bag when ironing so insides won't melt together).

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