Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Wrapping Paper Rant

I love Christmas and birthdays and holidays as much as anyone, and a beautifully wrapped package just for you is a special sight. What I don't like is oodles of garbage bags full of tossed tissue and glittery wrappings crumbled in a ball Christmas morning.

No need to worry this season though! I've got some great ideas to lessen your impact on the environment, and be stylish to boot.

Wrapping paper is designed to be thrown away. Sure, I'll save a pretty piece, but it eventually finds its way to the garbage, and even faster if your a rip and tear type gifter. Some alternatives:

Check out this post from Creature Comfort and the picture above. Using celery as a stamp looks awesome! You could use paintbrushes or finger paint or whatever you'd like also. And you could definitely use newspaper or paper grocery bags for your base. This would be a fun project for the little kiddies, too!

Here is another cool idea from Creature Comfort to add a clever package topper - a bow made out of a plastic grocery bag! It looks cute and you definitely have one (or 100) of those crammed in your cupboards.

The old newspaper wrapping trick is a good one but it can look a little drab. Be on the lookout for pages with comics, colored ads or pictures too add some pizazz to your paper. Small packages can be done in magazine pages too - always a source of lovely color. Another fun idea from Merriment Design: phonebook wrapping paper! I like the concept of selecting pages that match your gift - child care for a new baby, home improvement pages for a housewarming, etc. (This works for the newspaper idea too - why not use the wedding announcements for a bridal shower?)

Gift bags have always been great - easy to use even if you're in a rush or were fired from the charity gift wrapping counter at the mall. Plus they can be used again and again. You can pick them up very cheaply at the dollar store and add some flare to make it your own - or you can just make your own with my tutorial! (You thought I'd forget?)
You can jazz up any of the ideas here with some ribbons - why not do the same with one of the many reusable grocery bags out there now too? Your recipient will have an extra tote for their next trip to Trader Joe's!

This holiday season I'm vowing to help the earth by making my own wrappings. Join me!

Have some great ideas for gift wrapping of your own? Let me know!


  1. Emma, I wait for after-Christmas fabric sales and make up gift bags (similar to a pillowcase in style but in different sizes) and use them year after year. Not all the fabrics are Christmas prints, but all have the major theme colors of Christmas: red, green, bright blue, gole and silver. This let my creativity flow with sewing when a piece of celery isn't convenient.

  2. Thanks Marie! I'm gearing up to check out the post holiday sales this weekend!