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Mindful present wrapping

Updated: Dec 26, 2021

Christmas may be over but you can bet that is not the end of your gift wrapping days. For all those birthday presents you ever have to wrap, try these wrapping ideas which are eco-friendly and fun! Whilst gorgeous glittery wrapping paper looks lovely it is usually not recyclable. As well as being more green and good for the environment it is a chance to be creative and really think about who your gift is for.

What to use

These are some of the things I like to use.

  • I used brown kraft paper as plain paper can be composted, added to the recycling bin or re-used in craft activities or for wrapping other gifts. Other alternatives could include wrapping parcels in newspaper or magazines.

  • If you have gift bags or tissue paper from previous gifts then hold on to them and re-use them again and again.

  • Fasten packages with fabric ribbon or twine which can be re-used.

  • Use eco-friendly tape to wrap with. Plastic ensures that paper can not be recycled. I used washi tape, which is biodegradeable.

  • Re-use carboard boxes as packaging.

  • Use brown or coloured paper tags instead of sticky labels, attached with twine so they can be recycled.

Using other items for wrapping

To avoid wrapping why not use an object which can be re-used. A decorative box, for example with a gift tag, or a jar, basket or vase to hold items.

Decorate plant pots and fill with a nice flower or shrub as a personalised present. Used envelopes or brown paper bags that you have around the house can be repurposed. Children's artwork makes a fab idea for grandparents.

Alternatively use fabric which can be re-used, such as scarves or tea towels. Furoshiki is the art of Japanese gift wrapping, which involves using new or old fabrics such as a scarf or a handkerchief. The fabric is folded and tied, making it a creative and minimalist way to wrap a gift. The giftee can also keep the fabric and reuse it!

“As you fold and tie the fabric, focus on the person for whom the gift is intended, the gift itself and the furoshiki.” - Marie Kondo


Use natural items to present your gifts for a green, cost-effective added touch. Make your own dried orange slices, use cinnamon sticks, pine cones, greenery, holly, flowers and berries.

Washi tape can make it look more interesting too. Present it in a box or container you have in the house.

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