10 Amazing Ideas for Using Recycled Wrapping Paper This Holiday Season

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Wrapping Paper: Why Buy It Again This Year?


One of the best parts of Christmas is waking up on Christmas morning and seeing the presents sitting pretty underneath the tree. Half of the excitement is seeing the boxy shapes, holding them up, shaking them and seeing if they rattle – not knowing what you are about to unwrap is one of life’s greatest surprises.

If this sounds at all familiar, then you’re probably wondering — how does being eco-friendly have anything to do with Christmas gifts? It’s simple. Every year, we produce millions of yards of paper, and every year it sadly ends up in the trash. This year, why not start saving great scraps of paper to use again next year, and also, consider trying out a few more environmentally savvy ways of wrapping presents without buying more paper? Read on to learn a few great tips, and then try recycling Christmas cards too!

1. Use the Newspaper and Comics Section

If you want to go for a handmade look, grab your daily paper and seek out pages that have exciting headlines or colorful pictures. Alternatively, you could use the comics and feature Charlie Brown and other delightful characters. This will make the food processor you got for your cousin that much more exciting!

presents wrapped in comics

2. Use (Stenciled) Brown Paper Bags

You could also rip apart your brown paper bags you get from Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods carefully at the seams and stencil cool designs onto them. Design ideas; your own face (to remind the person of who got them their present), that person’s dog, or their favorite Hogwarts House.

3. Use Pages From a Magazine

The September issue of Vogue is hefty enough to serve as wrapping paper for your entire family – tear out pages and wrap your grandmother’s cashmere mittens in nearly-nude Beyonce photographs. Fun for the whole family!

4. Use Fabric or a Scarf to Wrap Gifts

If the person you are gifting to enjoys quilting, they can use the fabric for a quilt, or if they live in a cold climate, they can use the scarf during the chillier months!

5. Use a Wallet or Pouch That Can Be Used Again

If you are clever and give the gift of a wallet or a cool leather pouch, you can put things into it that are also present-like, and in doing so avoid the hassle of “wrapping” the present because you have utilized the Turducken method of wrapping!

6. Put a Bow on It

christmas presents wrapped with bow only

If car salesmen do it, then so can you. Put a giant festive bow on the gift, preferably with sparkles, huge furling curls of ribbon, or other extreme decorative aspects, and call it a day! (Or…you know…ten minutes before official Christmas Day.)

7. Put Your Gift in a Bag

Place your present in a brown paper bag and put a cute bow on it, or tie it shut with chic vintage twine! It will make your gift look both handmade and like your child’s school lunch, if she goes to a fancy prep school that has the word “emblazoned” in the dress code.

8. Wrap the Present in a Tea Tin

present wrapped in tea tinIf your present is small enough, and you are an avid tea drinker of the loose leaf variety, why not reuse the tea tin and pretend you are the Queen of England? For the record, the Queen only gives and accepts homemade jam for Christmas gifts.

9. Purchase Already-Recycled Wrapping Paper

Companies like Wrappily and Green Field Paper Company offer affordable options for recycled wrapping paper with cute holiday-themed designs.  

10. Don’t Wrap the Presents!

Buck tradition and refuse to use even recycled wrapping paper, instead giving your friends and family their gifts with your bare hands, their presents lying stark naked in their cold, pristine packaging. This will let your family know how much time and effort you truly think they are worth.

Christmas is a joyful time of the year , but it can also be slightly sad. The unwrapping of presents and the giving of things that supposedly bring us happiness also leads to a large amount of wasted paper, and wasted trees. In order to have an environmentally-friendly and green Christmas, try these ways to wrap green and save the planet!

[Photo Via: Pinterest; HappyMoneySaver;Pinterest; Guardian]

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