We all love a cracker at Christmas, right? Well, I do :-) but I do not like the waste that comes with them. Here is am alternative idea that not only cuts the waste to almost nothing, but also they look great and can be packed away and reused year after year!
Here is everything you will need (plus a sewing machine). Your chosen Christmas fabric (I bought 2m, and the roll was 1.3m ish if I remember rightly. It was plenty but I couldn't have got away with ordering 1m. I made 10 crackers.), ribbon in a coordinating colour, fabric scissors and 2x loo roll inners per cracker that you're planning to make.
First I sewed a hem all the way up the length of the material. This isn't essential- you could choose to hem each rectangle as you go along later if you prefer, but I found this saved time.
Cut one of your loo roll inners up the length so that you can fold it out into a rectangle of cardboard. Place it onto your material, leaving enough length between the hem and the start of the cardboard for the "pulling" part of the cracker.
Fold the material over the cardboard and leave enough excess for a hem along the side.
Measure how long you need each half cracker so that you don't have to model each one with the cardboard.
Cut out your piece to make your first half cracker.
Sew a hem along the length of your piece so you are left with a tube as shown.
Add a hem along the bottom to make a kind of "pillowcase", as shown.
Slot your cardboard into the pouch.
Re roll your cardboard tube as shown. You can start to see your cracker taking shape now.
Sew along the joining edge to make a tube. Once you get to this stage, make as many as you want so that you can add your chosen contents. I chose to add snappers, paper crowns that I got the children to decorate, and a chocolate. I forgot the jokes! It would be super fiddly and LONG to dismantle them all now to redo it so this year we will have a bowl of jokes on the table instead,hahaha. You could add miniature alcoholic drinks, jewellery, make up, etc- it's entirely up to you.
Cut your lengths of ribbon to size and cut 2 per cracker that you're planning to make (remember these will need hemming too to avoid fraying). Tie one around the end of the cardboard tube as shown, leaving plenty of material for holding and pulling.
Repeat above steps to make the second half of your cracker. Because the cardboard tube has been cut you can fold it over itself a little to make the inner tube narrower to fit inside the outer tube. Alternatively you can make the inner tubes a little narrower. Toilet roll inners vary in size so it would be far less time consuming to make them all the same size and roll the inners tighter.
There you have it! A reusable, no waste cracker. Don't forget, before tying as shown here you need to add your contents.
For more eco friendly and sustainable ideas please visit @plastic_what_you_preach on Instagram.