When you start to think about the many gifts you give year-round to your family and friends, it can add up. Not only does the cost add up, but the waste from wrapping paper and tissue also adds up. So when it comes to wrapping your next gift, whether it be a birthday or Christmas gift, try and think “green” when wrapping it. Not only will the people in your life appreciate the gift, but they will also appreciate your eco-friendly choice–and your environment will definitely thank you for the “green” wrap!
REUSABLE SHOPPING TOTES AND GIFT BASKETS
These come in a variety of sizes and styles and are a much greener alternative to wasteful paper bags and wrap. Consider lining your totes and baskets with something also reusable, like a kitchen or bath towel. If you can sew, make your own cloth totes and bags to pack your gifts in. It will be crafty and green.
Put the bling back into green by sprucing up raffia or hemp twine with strips of recycled aluminum foil. It will be a shiny addition to all the holiday décor.
Instead of a bow, use a compact fluorescent light bulb to top off your gift. You can even find them in holiday colours like red, green, silver and gold. This gift will make the holidays shine extra bright.
MAP IT OUT
Everyone has a map lying around, but when was the last time you really used one? Put it to good use by wrapping a gift or two. You may even theme your map around the gift. For example, if you are gifting your spouse with a trip, find a map of your destination.
Containers and crates make fantastic no-wrap-needed packaging. For your friend with the green thumb, put gardening supplies into a bucket or watering can, or fill a mixing bowl with spices for the chef on your list.
SAVE A TREE
Opt for tree-less sources of paper like 100 percent recycled paper printed with soy-based inks, which can be found at most retail stores. Have the kids decorate it to add a special touch of holiday spirit.
TAKE IT OUTSIDE
Seashells, pinecones or sprigs of berries and branches show that many of the season’s best decorations can be found in your own backyard. Show your appreciation for nature, as well as the recipient of your gift.
What’s black and white and read all over? Newspaper! Not only is it a fun punch line, it’s also a great way to wrap a gift. Put that mountain of magazines to good use by using its pages to wrap stocking stuffers.
COLOUR ME MINE
Most families with children probably have drawings, sketches or writings lying around from the their childhood. Grandma and Grandpa will truly appreciate his or her gift if it’s wrapped in a grandchild’s one-of-a-kind creation.
Wrap your gifts without huge amounts of conventional tape by making folds as you go along and tying with natural twine or wool yarn.
BECOME A MINIMALIST
Not every gift needs to be coated in wrapping paper. Bottles of wine do well with just a bow and large gifts, such as bicycles, fare better with just a tag. Sometimes simple is best!
THE WRAP OF CHRISTMAS PAST
If you’re a saver who has hung onto wrapping paper from last year’s gifts, try reusing it whenever you can.
The average family will have a living room full of Christmas wrapping paper this year. Use these alternatives to start a greener, more frugal holiday tradition where creativity and the idea of giving back are the only materials required.
MORE CHRISTMAS TIPS:
- Don’t forget the stocking stuffers!
- Holiday traditions explained
- Quiz: What’s your gift-giving style?
Gift wrapping basics