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Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft For Kids

Updated December 14, 2023

Are you looking for an easy Christmas craft you can make with your toddler or preschooler?

Check out these adorable paper bag gingerbread houses we made this week with our kids!

This paper bag gingerbread house craft only used a few materials, which you probably already have on hand!

When I set up crafts projects for my kids I look for easy and simple ways to do them.

This project doesn’t require you to print out any templates or to purchase any expensive suppilies.

Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft For Kids


Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft For Kids

Supplies Needed:

  1. Brown paper bags
  2. Scissors
  3. White glue or a glue stick
  4. Cotton balls or any fluffy white material for the snow
  5. Construction paper (various colors)
  6. Pipe cleaners or other decorative items (for the roof and trimmings)
  7. Markers or paint (optional, for additional decoration)


Christmas paper bag gingerbread craft



Prepare the Paper Bag: Take a brown paper bag and carefully fold the bottom flap upwards, creating a sharp crease.

No cutting is required to put the house base together!

If you wanted to avoid cutting altogether, you can even skip cutting out doors and windows.

They can be drawn on with markers, crayond, or paint or you could use recyclable materials to make them.

Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft



Form the Roof: Gently push the two top corners of the bag inwards to create a peaked roof shape and secure it with glue.

Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft



Seal the Edges: Apply glue along the edge of the bottom flap that has been folded up to seal the base of the house.

Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft



Create the Roofline: Once the glue has dried, press down along the roof’s edge to emphasize the triangular shape.



Add Snow: Attach cotton balls or any white fluffy material along the roofline to represent snow.

I cut the snow part of the roof from white printer paper.

You can make the roof look any way you’d like. 

Or have your kids cut a roof the way they want.

For some of our roofs, we cut a triangle, some a rectangle, some we used a wavy snow pattern on only a section of the roof.

We glued cotton balls to the roof to make it look more like real snow.



Paper Bag Gingerbread House C



Chimney (Optional): Cut a small piece of red construction paper into a rectangular shape for the chimney and glue it onto the roof.

I drew little lines on the chimneys to look like bricks, but this step is optional.

Paper Bag Gingerbread House C



Decorate: Cut out windows and doors from construction paper.

I cut out the doors and windows, but you can let your kids cut them out for practice if you’d like.

Glue them to the house and add decorative elements like pipe cleaners along the roof as Christmas lights for a festive look.


Here are a few of the houses we made to kick off the week before Christmas.

Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft



Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft



Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft


Enhance Fine Motor Skills (Optional): If appropriate for their age and skills, children can be invited to carefully cut off the bottom of the bag, enhancing their fine motor skills.


Paper Bag Gingerbread House Craft


We used pipe cleaners to decorate our houses with Christmas lights.

Your kids can decorate their gingerbread houses in so many ways:

  • Encourage your children to personalize their gingerbread houses with their favorite colors and materials. There’s no right or wrong way to decorate these houses!
  • Show that using different colors of construction paper for doors and windows or colored pipe cleaners for the roof can make each house unique.
  • Using glitter or sparkly pipe cleaners can add a magical touch to the gingerbread houses, making them even more festive.


A few simple ways you can extend this activity that I have done in the past include:

  • Baking gingerbread cookies or gingerbread-shaped Christmas cookies.
  • Playing Christmas music while we craft
  • Reading the story of the Gingerbread man
  • If you do elf on the shelf have the elf set up the craft and have it ready for when your kids wake up in the morning


Crafting benefits for toddlers and preschoolers

Christmas Crafting a paper bag gingerbread house is packed with learning opportunities for your little ones!

As they measure, cut, and decorate, they’re honing crucial skills without even realizing it!

Here are some of the educational treats hidden in this craft:

  • Fine Motor Skills: Manipulating scissors, peeling stickers, and handling small decorations like sequins or beads all give those little fingers a workout, improving dexterity and control. That is why I chose to cut up pipe cleaners. It is a bit of work to pick them up and glue them on.
  • Following Instructions: This craft is good for developing the ability to follow multi-step directions. Each fold and glue spot is a step in a sequence that your kids can learn to anticipate and execute.
  • Mathematical Thinking: There’s a dash of math involved, too. Counting decorations, understanding fractions (half a fold), and recognizing patterns and shapes contribute to their early numeracy skills.
  • Understanding Symmetry: When they decorate the sides of their gingerbread houses, they’ll get a practical lesson in symmetry. Ensuring each side mirrors the other can be a fun and artistic way to introduce this concept.
  • Color Recognition and Mixing: Choosing what colors to paint their house can lead to discussions about color recognition and even mixing—what happens when we combine white and red?
  • Creativity and Problem-Solving: Every creative decision is a chance to solve a problem. Whether it’s figuring out how to make a cotton ball look like smoke from a chimney or deciding where to place their windows, each choice is a step in creative problem-solving.


gingerbread house craft


Additional Christmas Activities:

The week leading up to Christmas can be crazy.

I liked to be prepared with easy-to-grab activities for my kids like Christmas coloring pages and Christmas activity placemats.

We always have extra paper plates around the holidays so I plan special crafts with those including an easy wreath craft and a paper plate Santa Claus craft that requires minimal supplies!

I keep Christmas playdough mat activities and Christmas craft sticks shape mat activities close at hand for when I need a no-fuss activity for the kids.

If you make this Christmas craft with your kids please share with us!

We’d love to share it on our Facebook page!



  • Sue Winters RN

    Sue Winters, RN - Co-Founder of Maternity Comfort Solutions Sue combines 20 years of nursing with a rich background in early childhood education. Co-founder of Maternity Comfort Solutions, her articles provide creative toddler activities and practical tips on pregnancy nutrition and baby shower planning, embodying her commitment to supporting families through early parenthood.

  • Doug Penta MD OB/GYN

    Dr. Doug Penta, MD - Co-Founder of Maternity Comfort Solutions Dr. Doug Penta, is a seasoned Obstetrician and Gynecologist with over 38 years of practice, co-founded Maternity Comfort Solutions to provide evidence-based pregnancy and parenting information. A Boston University alum and former Clinical Professor at Harvard, his articles on Maternity Comfort Solutions offer expectant mothers invaluable nutritional insights.

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