Eco-Friendly Gift Wrapping?

What do you do with wrapping paper once you have unwrapped the gift? A couple of years ago I would have proudly answered that I put it in the recycling bin. But, then I learnt that much wrapping paper cannot actually be recycled. As a family we try to recycle as much of our waste as we can, so that’s why I’ve put a ban on traditional wrapping paper.

How can you tell if your wrapping paper can be recycled?

The scrunch test! If it scrunches and stays scrunched, you can probably recycle it. Remember to remove the sticky tape!

What are the alternatives to wrapping paper?

When it comes to wrapping gifts, I try to avoid wrapping paper altogether. Instead I like wrapping gifts in pretty scarves I buy from charity shops. I also love to give a gift packaged in a box. A cardboard box can easily be recycled, and decorating it can be lots of fun – especially for the children!

My 4 year old daughter decorated this box to wrap a present for her friend’s birthday party. I got a quiet hour while she sat decorating the box, and I think it added a lovely personal touch to the gift.

I confess, I keep bits of ribbon which come on gifts or packaging and re-purpose them. They always make a gift look special, and then the ribbons are never wasted!

Wrapping Gifts in Fabric

I really love wrapping gifts in scarves! Fabric scarves – not the wool ones you might wear in winter! I buy them at charity shops throughout the year, and so I’ve always got a small supply in the cupboard. Japanese Fabric Wrapping or Furoshiki is such a stylish way to wrap. It takes a little practice, but once I had worked out how to do it I wondered why I had wrapped in any other way! It also has the added benefit that the scarf can be re-used by the recipient.