Tutorial: Print on Brown Paper Bags

In Anna's class, instead of sending birthday treats for everyone, the birthday child brings this thing called "Birthday in a Bag". Basically, the parents fill up the bag with treats (edibles or non-edibles) and the birthday kid opens the bag during snack time when the class sings Happy Birthday.

I have a few ideas on what will go in the bag (homemade Pokémon stickers, a cookie), but I thought it would be fun to decorate the bag itself too. Sure I could have decorated the bag with my chicken scratch, but printing on the brown bag is much more fun and cute. Besides, what else was I going to do on a Sunday night? :)

Here is my final result and I am really happy with it!
Materials: brown lunch bag, washi tape, printer

Step 1: Create an artwork you want to print on the bag in Photoshop.
Step 2: Open up Word and make the document size the same size as the paper bag (11x5). Insert the artwork image and position it just the way you like it. Make sure to do a print preview. When I did that, I realized that I actually had to put the artwork off-center in Word in order for it to print centered. Weird.
Step 3: Do a test print and see how your printer prints. For my printer, I needed the printed side up with the top part of the bag going into the printer first.
Step 4: Tape down the opening and flap of the paper bag. Put the bag in the printer.
Step 5: Change the setting on the printer for extra thick paper and click print.
Step 6: Remove tape and fill the bag with goodies for the birthday child.
{For the artwork, I used fonts KG Happy and MTF Sweet Sky Dings}


  1. What a great idea!!!!! I'm sure she'll love it.

    1. Thank you! I know, kids get excited over the simplest things. I am going to miss it so much when balloons mean nothing to them anymore.

  2. Wow! Anna is (nearly) 6? Already?!?!

  3. Thanks for sharing this article here about the paper bags. Your article is very informative and nicely describe the step by step process of printing bulk paper bags. Keep sharing this type of article here.


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