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18 Clever & Inexpensive Gift Wrapping Ideas

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18 Clever & Inexpensive Gift Wrapping Ideas

Before you grab last year’s leftover red and green wrapping paper, try something new to ensure that your gifts really stand out under the Christmas tree this year.  Whether you’re trying to go “green” or give your gifts a personal touch, these simple and inexpensive packaging ideas will help you wrap your gifts in love and holiday cheer this season.

  1. Mother Nature: Let mother nature serve as an inspiration this year.  Slip sprigs of pine, mistletoe, holly, wheat, cinnamon sticks, or pinecones into a ribbon or twine to upgrade plain kraft paper.
  2. Paint Your Canvas: Plain kraft paper is the perfect blank canvas.  Hand-painted wraps are always a hit and the perfect way to individualize each person’s gift.  Try laying a large piece of kraft paper on the floor and splatter different colored paints (Pollock style) to quickly and easily create your own wrapping paper masterpiece.
  3. Maps, Sheet music, and Book Pages: Vintage sheet music, old book pages, or old maps serve as a great graphic wrapping paper alternative.
  4. Hang an Ornament: Ornaments can be used as a gift, tag, and topper all in one.  Try finding initial monogram ornaments to match your recipient’s name.
  5. Newspapers: Wrapping gifts in newspaper is both eye-catching and eco-friendly.  It is the perfect way to recycle all your old Sunday papers while also creating the perfect black and white backdrop for a colorful ribbon to pop.  For a chuckle or two, wrap the gifts for anyone on your “nice list” in comics.
  6. Burlap Bags: For those odd shaped items that make wrapping tricky, try opting for a bag instead.  Burlap bags have an elegant, natural look and can be reused again and again.
  7. Fabric: Furoshiki is a Japanese gift wrapping technique using fabric instead of paper. Not only would it be a beautiful addition under your tree this season, but fabric can be reused, making it a greener choice.  Try covering cardboard mailing tubes with eye-catching fabric for a reusable storage container.  Look in your closets to see if you have any scarfs or linens you could give a new life to as Christmas wrapping.
  8. Something Sweet: Attach a candy cane to the ribbon of your package to really sweeten the deal.
  9. Chalkboard Packaging: Use black kraft paper and a white paint marker to turn any gift into a blackboard canvas.  No tags necessary.
  10. Tape: Washi tape, or festive masking tape (found at craft stores) make the perfect adornment to plain wrapping paper.  Get creative creating patterns.
  11. Recycled Gift Tags: Turn last years’ holiday cards into this years’ gift tags.  Old photos and postcards also work well.  Try using fancy craft scissors and ribbon to customize your own gift tags.
  12. Stamp: Give inexpensive kraft or butcher paper a makeover with woodblock stamps and ink. Potato-stamped paper is an old-school craft project to get the kids involved.  Cut a large white potato in half.  Press a metal cookie cutter firmly into the potato half.  Next, cut around the cookie cutter at about ½ inch depth, so that the potato portion inside the cookie cutter will protrude to create a stamp.  Dip in paint and get decorating. Enlist your kid’s help!
  13. Stencils: Acrylic craft paints and stencils are the perfect way to beautify plain white butcher paper.
  14. CD Sleeves: Wrap homemade cookies in inexpensive paper CD sleeves and wrap with baker’s twine.  This yummy treat is the perfect way to say happy holidays to your neighbors and co-workers.
  15. Paper Gift Packets: Gift packets are a creative alternative to a standard gift bag or box.  Try cutting two layers of kraft paper together in a chosen shape (star, tree, stocking).  Sandwich a gift inside between the two shapes and stitch along with edges using colorful thread.
  16. Animal Silhouettes: Print and cut out animal shapes onto newspaper or patterned craft paper and tape onto butcher paper for a simple and attractive design.
  17. Think Outside the Box: Get creative repurposing items around the house. Toilet paper tubes are perfect for holding gift cards. Empty chip canisters are great for cookies  and they have built in lids.  Search your house, and you will be surprised to find what you can repurpose into a gift box.
  18. Glass Mason Jar:  Mason jars or cleaned out glass containers are great for repurposing over and over again. Glass jars are wonderful for storing sweets, gift cards, hot chocolate mixes, homemade granola.  The possibilities are endless for gifts in a jar.  Tie a ribbon or bakers twine around the top for a festive adornment. See more Mason jar ideas here.

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1 comment

1 Mary Sexton { 12.28.17 at 6:42 pm }

I like these ideas and will bookmark this page so I can look at it at other times of the year as well as at Christmas. I prefer to reuse anything I can, recognizing everything ends up in a landfill sooner or later, but so much better to get 2 or 3 uses out of anything you can.
Future generations will thank you. Plus, it’s fun to be creative and make packages “different”.

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