Gift Wrapping; Made Simple, Fun, and Budget Friendly!
Successful quality wrapping depends on you. If you are like my husband, the first step is to find someone who enjoys and is good at wrapping, and have them do it. (He told me I needed to add that he can wrap, he just doesn't want too.) If you're like me and enjoy crafty things, or you do not have a 'go to' wrapper, I hope my guide can ease your way into the joys of wrapping!
The first step needs to be finding a clear, clean, large, firm area to wrap your gifts. Best is a table. I use my sewing table, which has a handy middle line where it folds that my scissors fit right into for cutting straight lines! You can also use a bed, though you must be VERY careful not to cut your sheets or blankets (guilty as charged here). You can also use the floor, if you want to get down there; and back up!
Next, lay out ALL your wrapping supplies, whether you think you need them or not. This includes tape (extra rolls preferred), sharp scissors, wrapping papers, ribbons, bows, pens, and the gift/gifts.
The biggest mistakes people make when wrapping packages are not using enough paper or tape, or using too much paper! Also remember that folding over your papers edges will give all packages a cleaner look, and a stronger edge so it wont accidentally tear before it's time to open. If you want to do this, be sure to leave 1/2"-1" extra paper on each edge for folding.
Instructions for different types of packages as follows.
Instructions for Standard (rectangle/square) PackagesClick thumbnail to view full-size
Instructions for Odd Shaped PackagesClick thumbnail to view full-size
Instructions for Round, and Squishy Objects
When dealing with round or squishy objects, such as clothes, pillows, or balls, often the best choice is to put the item in a box. When no box is available, you can wrap them like a piece of candy for a cute look.
Instructions for Gift Bags
Gift Bags can be a great choice, but how do we get the tissue paper looking neat, and still covering the gift completely?
First, be sure the bag is not too big for your item, your item(s) should fit, with just a little room to spare.
You can make your tissue paper large enough by taping pieces together, or small enough by cutting it down. You want your tissue paper to stick over the top of your bag by 3-6" depending on how big it is. For this, you need paper double the size of your bag (including the bottom side), plus the 3-6".
i.e.If your using a 6" bag, that is 2"x3" on the bottom. This means you want tissue paper at least 20" on each side.
For larger items, you may also want to lay some tissue paper over the top of your gift. Either flat across, or making gathers and filling in once gift is in the bag.
Flat packages, such as Books or DVD'sClick thumbnail to view full-size
Instructions for Cylinders, also works for bottles, and tall rectangles.Click thumbnail to view full-size
Budget Friendly Ribbon and Name Tag IdeasClick thumbnail to view full-size
More Budget Saving Ideas
Gift bags, ribbons, paper, all these add up and can get expensive. Here are some simple things you can do to cut down your costs.
- Save Your Ribbons and Bows. Ribbons and bows are the easiest things to save and re-use. Ribbons can be cut up and made into bows, and a little tape on the sticky pad of a used bow will make it good as new!
- Save your gift bags. Just be careful you don't re-use it for the person who gave the bag to you!
- Make your own bows. You can buy bulk ribbons, and make them into pretty bows! I like the instructions here http://www.100layercake.com/blog/2011/12/06/how-to-make-a-gift-bow/ You can also cut strips of wrapping paper and follow the same instructions for a coordinated bow!
- Save your boxes and packages and newspapers! I try to keep a small selection (large during the holiday season) of small-medium sized boxes around for putting gifts in. Often this can turn a gift that would be a nightmare to wrap, into a pleasant dream! Plus, I always put fragile items in boxes with cushioning. You never know if a child, your own or someone else (or even an adult at times) is going to go present shaking! Stuffing from an old (but washed) pillow, or newspaper scraps are great for cushioning objects!
Some people like to try to save wrapping paper and re-use it. I draw the line here myself, especially since my kids tear wrapping to pieces, and well, so do I. Tearing the paper is half the fun of getting a gift!
If I have missed any shapes, or you have a question about steps in this guide, please feel free to comment and I will get back to you ASAP. Thank you for reading, and I hope this is helpful to you!