Do something good for the environment - Reduce the tons and tons of non-recyclable gift wrap waste! I'll show you two quick and easy eco-friendly gift wrapping options.
The Christmas Dilemma
You might have noticed by now – Christmas is coming! Obviously, that’s the time for some thoughtful gifts for your loved ones. Of course, you also want your gifts to look great under the tree, so you put some thought and effort into wrapping them caringly. So far so good. But there is an ugly side to this as well – the tons and tons of gift wrap waste.
Did you know, that a huge part of modern wrapping paper is neither recyclable nor biodegradable? And while paper with glitter or metallic effects might look stunning, their impact on the environment surely isn’t. I’m sorry. I really don’t wanna be a party pooper here. And I have to blame myself for not thinking about this years ago. While I’ve always tried to reuse pretty wrapping paper, I would still buy some coated shiny paper occasionally. Not knowing how bad they were for the environment. But just about a week ago I listened to a documentary on the radio, where they talked about just that and now I can’t go back to the state of blissful ignorance. Gotcha! Now you can’t go back either. I know. That was kinda mean… 😉
Eco-Friendly Gift Wrap Ideas
So this year, I made a promise to myself to try harder. After a bit of brainstorming and researching, I found two eco-friendly gift wrap ideas that I really liked and wanted to show you.
1. Stamp it, baby!
Sometimes, the easiest things are the best. You might remember this from your childhood – before there were stickers, there were stamps. Back then, stamps were cool! I remember during my first years at school, whenever we did something especially well, the teacher would stamp a bumble bee into our notebooks… Ah, the good old days. 😉
Anyhow, if you still have some stamps and ink lying around, it’s time to free them from dust and put them to good use! And if you don’t, no worries! You can make some easy stamps in no time at all with something I’m sure you have at home! Enter: An ordinary potato. That’s right. A POTATO. Now, get a sharp, short knife and carve a few basic shapes, like a triangle, a rectangle or a heart, out of that potato. Then, get your watercolours and some simple recyclable brown packing paper and start stamping! Easy peasy. You can also use some plant leaves as stamps. Just dip them into the watercolour and press them onto the packing paper. I have to say, I was very impressed with the result. So quick and easy!
Now that you made your own gorgeous customised eco-friendly wrapping paper, I’m sure you don’t want to bin it after just one use! To make it easier to reuse the next time, don’t use sticky tape (it’s bad for the environment anyway!). Get yourself some nice reusable ribbons or paper string to wrap the gifts.
2. Furoshiki – Japanese Gift Wrapping Technique
Furo – what? Furoshiki. It’s a thing! Utilised in an eco-friendly gift wrapping technique the Japanese have been using for centuries. Essentially, you use a beautiful piece of fabric to skillfully wrap your present. Apparently, this is such an important part of the Japanese culture, that the Japanese Ministry of Environment even has a PDF on how to use a furoshiki for wrapping different kinds of presents.
You don’t have to own a traditional furoshiki though. You can use any square piece of fabric instead. What a great way to use those odd pieces of fabric that you might have collected over the years! And what a great way to wrap a present without creating more waste!
Edible Gift Tags
Now I’ve got something extra special for you! It’s almost too good to be true. Edible gift tags. Why haven’t I thought of that before? It just occurred to me some days ago when I was baking cookies with the kids, that it would be super easy to make cookie gift tags. And just when I thought “That’s it, I’ve invented something cool! I’m gonna be rich!”, a quick Google search revealed that edible gift tags were invented already… Bummer! Don’t you hate it, when people steal your ideas before you have them? 😉 So it might not be super new and original, it’s still fun and yummy though. And a great way to involve the kids. The next time you bake some cookies together – why not bake some gift tags as well? Thus, you won’t create additional paper waste, instead, you’ll earn some brownie points for your eco-conscience and some real-life cookie points for your tummy. Win-win! You can find the recipe for the cookie-gift-tag-dough here.
Reduce – Reuse – Recycle
What’s true for the rest of the year, should also ring true for the Christmas season. I hope I could show you two quick and easy ways to make gift wrapping more eco-friendly this year! Let me know how you go. Oh, if you liked those ideas, go ahead and pin the post! Noone in holding you back! 😉 Also, if you have more recommendations for eco-friendly gift wrap ideas, please share them in the comments below. I’m always interested in learning something new! 🙂
You love the gift wrap ideas, but are not sure what to wrap yet? Go check out my Amazon gift ideas for family & friends!