I have always hated buying beautiful paper only to cut it, rip it and throw it away. I’ve done it for many years because that is the thing to do. Over the last five years I’ve come up with new ideas and have been able to repurpose all kinds of things to use! It does take some time and effort to get started, but it can be continued for years with minimal effort. I have been “collecting” for a few years now and haven’t had to purchase any gift wrapping supplies for at least 3 years.
There are so many great ideas out there and I only have a few. These have worked well for me and I plan on continuing to use them for many years to come. I’ve used items from repurposed gift bags, paper bags from store purchases, and ribbon from bag handles or packaging from different purchases. I also collect ribbon and bags, etc from Christmases and birthdays past as well. Often family and friends will throw away the ribbon I used to wrap a gift and I just ask for it back if they were planning on trashing it. This can be done in a respectful and polite way and not in a greedy or stingy manor.
“Were you going to keep that? I’d love to use it to wrap another gift if you were finished with it.”
I usually get very positive results and most don’t mind in the least. Sometimes if they were going to use it for something then it gives me new ideas for future use! 😉 Just start using your imagination and you will be amazed at what you can find around the house to wrap gifts!
Just a few days ago we did our Christmas wrapping and here are some of the options we came up with this year. Take a look and let me know what you think or if you have some better ideas!
1) This photo is for dear hubby’s birthday gift (December 28th) which was included in the Christmas wrapping! This could easily be changed to look more like a Christmas gift by adding a silver bow or ribbon. The bag was originally given to me with some promotional gift from work. I just saved the bag to reuse it! I have some plain white cloth that came from an old white table cloth that I lightly bleached and cut up to use instead of tissue paper, which has worked very well. Then just add a label inside the bag and its finished!
2) All three of these boxes were from stationary or cards that were given to me as gifts. I just saved the boxes to reuse them and added a bow. The ribbon was actually left over from some of our wedding gifts! Some could accuse me of being a pack rat, but I do have limitations! I have two plastic boxes for gift wrapping supplies (which I’m actually considering condensing to one box). I don’t allow it to over flow and often re-evaluate what I have and what I should just get rid of because it’s been in the box for too long and hasn’t been used.
3) All from gifts bags! I don’t like using gift bags unless there really isn’t another way. I prefer gifts that are fun to look at and open!
- The silver gift is from a ‘bebe’ bag that someone had given me filled with clothing for one of my kids. I saved the bag because I liked the color and figured I could use it.
- The bright blue back was a plain paper bag that my son received a birthday present in. Again, just cut it apart and used it as gift wrap!
- Last but not least this was a paper bag with the pretty printing on it from JC Penny I think. Again, it was from a few years ago and I just cut it up this year to use!
4) Another easy and very reusable option is wrapping in cloth. Both of these gifts are wrapped in cloth that I found on freecycle. It was advertised as patterned cloth, mostly for Christmas. I picked it up and have just been cutting it to the sizes that I needed! Works great and most people know who wrapped their gift when they see it and often return it back for me to use again next year! I will say that with cloth, you do need a good tight ribbon to keep it in place since tape doesn’t hold the cloth really.
5) More from bags! The silver and gold is from a gift bag and the red checker was from a bag at a craft fair. My grandmother had purchased something and was going to toss the bag when she got home, so I grabbed it and put it to another use!
6) Other ideas include using old maps, books, comics, newspaper, brown paper bags and any other types of paper you can get your hands on.
I’d love to hear your ideas! Let me know what you’ve done!