‘Tis the season for hot cocoa, warm blankets, decorated trees and of course, beautifully wrapped gifts! These days most people are trying to make festivals more about the spirit of giving and gratitude, rather than blatant commercialism. The result is an awareness for more DIY gifts, or green gifts that are easy on the environment. But what about your gift wrap?
Using up endless rolls of pretty paper only for it to be thrown away – hardly eco-friendly, don’t you think? But that doesn’t mean you have to go bare; just try out these creative and budget-friendly gift wrap ideas that make use of things you have lying around the house. Bonus – they don’t need too much time or sophisticated DIY skills!
7 Creative and Budget-friendly Gift Wrap Ideas
1. Brown Paper
Plain brown paper actually makes for very elegant gift wrap! This is one item you’re very likely to have in your home, especially if you have school-going kids. You can go the rustic route with twine and twigs, or embellish it for something a little more fancy.
Newspaper is great for quirky, yet very eco-friendly packaging! You can also use pages from old magazines – the glossier the better! You can use the newspaper as is, or use some water color for a funkier look. Another advantage of newspaper is that you can also make gift bags. Just add some leftover lace or bows to pretty it up. Check out the lovely way Helga Noack has done it with paper and a flower.
3. Plain paper
When you have a blank canvas like plain white paper, the sky’s the limit for your gift wrap! This is a good way to use up paper that is printed on one side, so you can wrap the gift with the plain side out. Decorate it to your heart’s liking, or try what Miss Webbie has done – stick on crayons and leave the decoration to the recipient!
4. Fabric Scraps
There are a zillion ways you can use fabric scraps as gift wrap. You can sew a little pouch and tie some ribbon for a small gift. Or you could actually wrap a gift just the way you would do with paper, in a method called Furoshiki, as described in Evermine. Fabric is also perfect for sightly oddly shaped gifts, for which paper might be a little difficult to manage.
5. Pillow Boxes
No, these aren’t made from old pillow cases – they’re made from old toilet paper rolls! And no, you don’t need to be a super DIY-er either. Just follow these tips from Artsy Craftsy Mom to make an assortment of cute little pillow boxes to gift all kinds of trinkets!
6. Cereal Boxes
If your gift is a little too heavy for a newspaper gift bag, no problem – try something stronger instead, like a cereal box! These are really easy to turn into gift bags, and they’re quite sturdy. Crafty Journal has a full tutorial on how you can make one yourself. You can also wrap it up in brown paper or newspaper and go crazy with decoration.
With a little creativity, you can convert a container of nearly any shape into a gift box. It can be a Pringles can, an oatmeal container or a sweets tin – anything works! This tutorial from Spaceships and Laser Beams converts an old oatmeal canister into a pretty gift box. You can use fabric or any kind of paper to deck it up!
- Make bows out of paper scraps or pages from a magazine. They look just as good as store-bought ones; maybe even better.
- If you have lots of Washi tape lying around, use it to add some color to gifts wrapped in plain or brown paper.
- Use colored Pom Poms, buttons and stickers to add a personalized touch to your gifts.
- Try printing on plain gift paper – either with vegetables or ready made stamps. Try interesting patterns.
- Use up any leftover ribbon, but if you’re out of it, you can also use twine, fabric strips, string or even measuring tape!
With tips like these, you can now be confident of presenting a green gift that’s also wrapped in an eco-friendly manner! Both the environment and your loved ones will thank you!