Eco Gift Wrapping

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Eco-friendly Gift Wrapping Ideas

I’ve become increasingly moved lately to see a reduction in the masses of wrapping paper that gets used and tossed with little thought as to the waste, and how we as a family can contribute to reducing this waste.  I was especially motivated after watching ‘The Story of Stuff’ and how the current model of consuming and discarding is not sustainable, and in fact the cost is being felt elsewhere.  I encourage you to read this [insert link:] and watch the free online presentation when you have the chance.

Paperless Ideas

The benefits of going paperless in the way we wrap our gifts is not just the money saved from buying wrapping paper, but I believe it is a more responsible way of living where we are considering stewarding our resources with care and consideration.

I love coming up with creative ideas for presenting gifts. It’s amazing what you might have lying around that is unused, or some things to pick up that would otherwise be thrown away.

Eco Gift wrapping 2

Here are some ideas to inspire your imagination:

  • Empty glass jars and bottles
  • Fabric scraps for wrapping or strips for tying a gift together
  • Cut open clean boxes and turn inside out to create a gift box
  • Dish towel with a recipe book inside
  • Flax bags
  • Make decorative flowers from flax strips
  • Cane baskets from the op shop
  • Clay pots from the op shop
  • Empty coconut shells for things like seedlings and micro greens, or a neat way to present Christmas nuts and treats
  • Empty coffee sacks for large gifts (pick up for free from your local coffee roaster)
  • Plastic bucket with gift things for the home inside
  • Wrap baby shower gifts in a blanket
  • Reusable shopping bags as a gift ‘hamper’ for Christmas
  • Use empty egg cartons at Easter time if you celebrate with treats
  • Use hemp string and yarn to decorate and hold together fabric etc
  • Use large fresh leaves to wrap smaller gifts, and tie with strings of flax or long grasses
  • Wrap a gift in something that forms part of the gift, such as a blanket or cloth around a baby shower gift
  • Mason jars are fantastic for all kinds of gifts, from soup mixes or muffin mixes, to beads and craft supplies.
  • Clay pots are versatile and also reusable
  • Sew a drawstring into old pillowcases and use as a bag
  • Use old biscuit tins to give your own baking
  • Two shells together are a neat way to enclose small gifts such as jewellery
  • Make your own reusable cloth bags – I have never sewn but gave this a try and they turned out great.  I simply used some leftover upholstery fabric that would have otherwise been discarded.
  • Here’s the final one: don’t even wrap your gift – set up a scavenger hunt instead!

Recycle and Upcycle

If you do opt to use paper, here are a handful of options to recycle what you already have rather than buying wrapping paper:

  • Use scrapbooking paper scraps – weave strips together for something different
  • Use old music sheets
  • Use old buttons to decorate
  • Use old magazines and newspaper
  • Reuse old toilet rolls and wrap with recycled paper
  • Cardboard tubes can be used for soaps and other small gifts
  • Upcycle unused rolls of newsprint left over from your local newspapers print run.  Often they give it away or sell for just a few dollars.  Decorate your plainly wrapped gift with anything such as stamps, buttons, small fresh flowers or simple twine.
  • Reuse and decorate empty baking paper boxes for presenting muffins or something similar.
  • Recycle wooden crates

You’re only limited by your imagination.  No doubt there are dozens of things to use in your home that can be re-packaged, re-cycled and creatively assembled to make a gift that looks inviting and unique.  It says something special to the receiver about the care and thought you have taken in creating something special for them.

A picture can sometimes say much more than words – so can I encourage you to take a look at what others have done so as to spark your creativity?

Finally, if you’re interested in delving into moving your household in a more sustainable direction and reducing your waste these holidays (and beyond), here are some great resources to guide you on your journey:

This post is part of the 25 Frugal Days of Christmas and was written by Victoria from Homemaking with Heart.

Victoria Boyd is a wife, mother, and follower of Jesus. She is passionate about all sorts of things such as worship, the written word, intercession, justice issues, family history, raising children and indigenous peoples. Find her writing on homeschooling, faith, homemaking, parenting, and natural living at
25 Frugal Days of Christmas at Frugal Homeschool Family

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Are you looking for more frugal Christmas ideas? Check out the other posts in this series:

Day 1: Create Your Own Photo Christmas Cards with free templates and tutorial
Day 2: Making Fun and Affordable Christmas Gifts
Day 3: How to Have a $5 Christmas
Day 4: Cookies in a Jar: a Frugal Christmas Recipe Round up with FREE printable gift tags
Day 5: Snowflake Card Craft for Kids
Day 6: DIY Snowman Ornament
Day 7: Printable Handmade with Love Gift Tags
Day 8: Frugal Family Traditions
Day 9: Bringing the 12 Days of Christmas to Life for your Spouse
Day 9 {2}: A Frugal Family Christmas Tradition
Day10: Frugal Gift Idea: DIY Christmas Crackers
Day 10 {2}: 6 Ways to Repurpose Kids Art for Christmas
Day 11: Repurposed, Reused, Free and Frugal Christmas Decor
Day 12: Frugal Gift Idea: Favorite Things Memory Box
Day 12 {2}: Frugal Family Christmas Tradition Ideas

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This Post Has One Comment

  1. I love these ideas for wrapping presents! They’re great from an environmental perspective and so creative and fun too!

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Hi, there! I’m Heather Bowen, and I am so glad you’re here.

My passion lies in helping homeschool moms balance marriage, motherhood, homemaking, and homeschooling all while remaining sane!

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