Sustainable Wrapping Ideas for the Holidays

Sustainable Wrapping Ideas for the Holidays

By Heather Bien

Who doesn’t love opening a gorgeous present during the holidays? We know it’s the thought that counts, but it feels so much more special when we get to unwrap beautifully chosen paper and a sumptuous ribbon. 

However, we also realize that all those pretty pinnings aren’t exactly environmentally-friendly –– and, since we’re making an effort to gift sustainable presents this year, we decided we should extend that commitment to wrapping. Plus, wrapping sustainably is a fun and creative challenge! 

Here are a few ideas for wrapping your gifts in a more sustainable manner this season: 

Recycled Paper: As The Sound of Music once said, brown paper packages tied up with strings are among our favorite things. Recycled brown paper has a rustic chic effect –– and it’s one of the most environmentally friendly wrapping paper options you can choose!

Dish Towel: If you’re giving something kitchen related, wrapping the item in kitchen linens is a wonderful way to not only stay on-theme, but also add in an extra bonus gift. Choose a dish towel, tea towel, or even a table cloth or apron to wrap up your gift. Your recipient will be pleasantly surprised to realize the wrapping is a present!

Scarf: What’s more seasonably appropriate than wrapping a gift in a scarf?! Of course, you don’t have to choose a winter scarf –– a vintage silk scarf could also make for a stunning way to wrap a present. 

Newspaper: Wrapping a gift in newspaper has an old-school appeal –– you can even paint your own designs onto the paper (maybe in metallic gold for some twinkly sparkle?!) if you’re feeling extra creative. 

Reusable Tote Bag: Yes, you can reuse and re-gift gift bags, but the best kind of gifting bags to use again are those that are actually designed to be reusable. Pick up an inexpensive and festive tote bag that the recipient can use again and again (it could become their go-to reusable grocery bag!). 

And, because we all love a gift that offers a bit more embellishment and a few extras, here are ideas for gift wrapping that go beyond the “paper”:

Save up items throughout the year that can be repurposed into gifting accessories. Keep small jars to fill with edible gifts, ribbons from presents you’ve received, tissue that’s still in good shape, or anything that could find a second life as a wrapping device. And, no, your present won’t look like a junkyard just because you’re using secondhand gifting items –– the collected look has charming vintage appeal!

Bypass disposable bows to top your presents and instead include items that become part of the gift. Use an ornament, a piece of candy or a sweet treat, a pair of earrings, a brooch, or even a necklace to dress up your gift. By adding something that your recipient will use for years to come, you’re creating a more sustainable gift! 

You can also step outside and grab a few items from nature to include in your holiday wrapping. Include evergreen sprigs, holly, or even pinecones for a merry and green look. 

Hopefully this gives you a few ideas to make your holidays both joyful and sustainable! And, if you’re looking for ideas for sustainable gifts or staying mindful throughout this busy season of parties and time with family, you can find more articles on our guide

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