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  • Christmas wrapping ideas

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    Are you looking for new Christmas wrapping ideas to make wrapping presents part of the seasonal fun? If you like a bit of Christmas crafting, I hope you'll like some of my simple, but very effective, gift topper and gift wrapping ideas for Christmas and holiday gifts. If you don't have time for homemade gifts (I rarely do) it might make the festive season seem less frenzied if you can set aside a little time for some kind of creative activity. Making unique gift wrap is very satisfying.

    Christmas gift wrap

    Christmas wrapping party

    I love to see other's gift wrapping ideas too, and it's something people often enjoy, so why not consider making it a group activity? In previous years we've taken part in gift wrapping parties, where we supply brown paper, craft supplies, a bit of greenery and some festive drinks - and ask for a charity donation in exchange. 

    The cost is pretty minimal - brown paper is inexpensive, and bakers twine usually comes in 100m rolls - so it doesn't cost too much to execute. I try to group supplies together so it isn't too chaotic - I organise washi tape by similar colours on these large safety pins. I've found that friends are generally happy to stick with classic colour schemes, so rather than catering for everyone's wrapping whims, try being consistent in your supplies. I like to use a silver and gold Christmas theme, with natural brown paper and foliage.

    If you're expecting a lot of people or think this is something you might do in future years, you might be able to buy brown paper and tissue paper and bulk from your nearest whole flower market - we bought bunches of eucalyptus and a ream of pretty gold star tissue from London't New Covent Garden flower market (you don't need to be a florist or have a wholesale account to shop there, just remember that the prices quoted will exclude VAT, and that if you show up a little later the sellers will be more patient with you.) A traditional colour theme using red ribbon and dark green paper also works well.

    In more ambitious years we've combined gift wrapping with making beeswax candles, lemon curd and peppermint bark, and provided the jars and catering boxes to wrap them in - but more recently I've found it easier to just let people wrap their own gifts. If you really want to include a 'making' element, people love making pom poms with the inexpensive plastic pom pom makers you can easily buy online.

    Have you ever done something similar? If wrapping Christmas presents is not your idea of fun, you might find an event like this at least focuses your mind on the task - or you might find someone enthusiastic to do it for you! I've seen some friends in a new light when I've witnessed creative skills I didn't know they had!

    Christmas wrapping ideas

    Easy ways to make unique gift wrap

    1. Add a personalised touch

    An easy way to make a parcel look special is simply to use a letter sticker to add the recipient's initial, or a rubber stamp to stamp their name or initial. I love the font on these alphabet stamps.

    wrapping Christmas presents

    2. Add a small crafty touch

    Even a small crafty element will make your Christmas gift wrap unique. Your friend or family member will appreciate the extra effort! Here's some easy ideas that anyone can manage:

    Make your own gift tags

    - Even if your crafting skills aren't amazing (I'm all about the quick crafty fix myself), you can stamp a design on a plain brown tag (don't worry if it goes off the edge - that looks great too), add a little washi tape to the edge of a tag or small envelope, or layer a couple of items (try a letter sticker on top of washi tape stripes). You may find creative skills you didn't know you had!

    - Use a stamp to make the tag itself. Many of our rubber stamps are a good size for making tags (we added a silver star sticker on top of our Christmas tree stamp). You can use a rivet punch (this is the one I bought from Amazon) to make a hole at the top.

    Christmas gift wrapping ideas

    Make your own wrapping paper

    - Use stamps on plain brown paper to make your own wrapping paper. We keep paper from online deliveries, stamp it with nature-themed stamps, and then scrunch up the paper afterwards for a rustic look! Geometric designs look better on smooth paper. It doesn't matter if the designs are randomly repeated and not in exact lines so don't worry about accuracy - when it's wrapped up no-one will notice. For small parcels you can add washi tape or glitter tape triangles to jazz up plain paper. I'd stay small scale if you do this one - you'll soon get crafter's fatigue if you attempt anything more ambitious! If you don't have many Christmas-specific craft supplies to hand you can still be creative - try using the rubber on the end of a pencil to make polka dots on plain paper!

     

    3. Less doesn't have to be more

    Add as much bling as you're comfortable with: things I like to add include eucalyptus stems (these dry out nicely, so you don't need to worry about bits of pine all over the carpet), gypsophila, dried orange slices, jingle bells, cute paperclips such as these arrow paperclips, and glitter stars.

     

    4. Add a touch of luxury

    This year I'm using this leather string, which is a beautiful quality and a stylish alternative to Christmas ribbon. I'm mainly using it on small gifts, as it's pricey if you're wrapping huge boxes, but for larger boxes, why not try this gold and white bakers twine or this elegant black wax string. Both are 100 metres long so will wrap lots of presents!

     Christmas wrapping

    Gift wrapping ideas

     What are your favourite Christmas gift wrapping ideas?

    Everything used above is available in my shop. You can find all of the gift wrap supplies here.

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    Other blog posts you might like:

    - How to make personalised ribbon

    - Carol music wrapping paper

    - How to make a washi tape feather

  • Kraft vintage postcards

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    This week we've got a special set of postcards as a freebie with every order - 4 kraft postcards with vintage designs (not identical, but similar to the designs you can print at home here.)

    We have limited availability so it's worth placing your order quickly (I'll update when we're sold out.) First visit to our store? Festive collections you might like include:

    - Christmas gift wrap

    - Rifle Paper Co gifts

    - Gifts for crafters

    Brown paper parcels with vintage postcards

    {Included above: gold string lights, gold and white ribbon, dark grey leather string, gold leather string, vintage Paris postcards (just seen)}

    Vintage rose postcards

    gold-leather-string

    Check out our range of gift wrapping supplies here.

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    You might also like:

    - Vintage printable gift tags

    - Carol music wrapping paper

    - How to make a washi tape feather

  • How to make personalised ribbon

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    Making your own personalised ribbon is very easy but gives incredibly satisfying results! 

    1. Buy cotton ribbon (such as our grey cotton ribbon) or bias binding from a local haberdashers. The thicker ribbon below is bias binding and is very inexpensive.

    2. Lay a piece of newspaper or brown paper on a cutting mat, so you don't stain your mat. 

    3. Stamp the design of your choice! Our ink pads are suitable for printing on fabric, and you can fix the ink with an iron, but I've never done this and think the results turn out fine! If you use a newer ink pad it will work better as the ink saturates better when fresh.

    personalised ribbon

    personalised christmas ribbon

    how to make personalised ribbon

    I used the below rubber stamps for our ribbon:

    - Pine cone stamp

    - Celebration rubber stamp kit

    You can also see how I stamped our grey cotton ribbon to co-ordinate with our free vintage gift tags here.

  • Christmas gift wrap ideas

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    It's coming up to the time of year when I'm pinning Christmas gift wrap ideas like crazy! I prefer easy, crafty ideas and supplies which can be used all year round (no Santa paper here.) My gift wrap supplies stash is, as you might imagine, quite large, but I love simple ideas. In recent years I've stocked quite a lot of gift wrap from House Doctor (hello, favourite leather string) and one of the nicest things is that they style beautiful images for their stockists to use. Here's some of my favourites from the last few years - the emphasis is on a stylish, generic patterned wrapping paper (we don't stock those as they're not cost-effective to post!), but adding simple twine and a stylish Christmas tag or postcard for a seasonal touch.

    gift wrap ideas

    {Items included above: winter nature postcards, advent calendar tags. Similar items: black wax string.}

    natural gift wrap

    star gift wrap

    {Included above: white star garland.}

    Gold leather string

    {Included above: grey leather string, gold leather string. Similar: jute twine.}

    Black and white ribbon

    {Included above: tailor scissors. Similar: gold and white ribbon.}

    House Doctor gift wrap

    Metallic Christmas gift tags

    Christmas gift wrapping ideas

    {Included above: metallic Christmas gift tags.}

    House Doctor gift wrap styled

    Christmas gift tags

    {Included above: Metallic Christmas gift tags, brass arrow paperclips, winter gift tags, mixed gold gift tags. Similar: gold striped ribbon, dark grey leather twine.}

    Triangle paper clips

    {Included above: triangle paper clips, grey fabric ribbon. All photos © House Doctor.}

    Check out the Papermash range of House Doctor gift wrap and the full range of gift wrap tags, stamps and twine here.

    Tips for styling pinnable gift wrapped images:

    - I love the vinyl photo backdrops from Capture by Lucy; great quality and they roll up for easy storage. She stocks lots of similar backdrops to the textured backgrounds used above.

    - Wooden bobbins such as those which come with our range of leather strings look great when half-rolled out around the edge of photos.

    - Add a natural touch with foliage and pine cones. I try and remember to collect pine cones and keep them from the previous Christmas, and greenery such as eucalyptus is available all year round, so you can style a stylish image out of season. Pine cones can be decorated with white or neon paint, and even glitter. Any kind of dried flower with a bit of glitter can look festive, though this kind of accessory might work best for styled photo shoots - gift recipients might be less thankful for half-dead foliage under the tree!

    - Add a pair of Instagram-worthy scissors (note that most pairs we've tested aren't brilliantly sharp so we tend to use pretty scissors mainly for styling.)

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    Follow our gift wrapping Pinterest boards here:

    - Gift wrapping ideas

    - Christmas wrapping

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    Other posts you might like:

    - Black and white gift wrap

    - Sheet music gift wrapping ideas

    - Brown paper stamped Christmas gift wrap

  • Pressed flowers gift wrap

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    A few years ago a friend gave me a flower press similar to this inexpensive wooden flower press, which was such a great gift idea! This summer I thought I'd integrate some pressed flowers into some gift wrap. Small, colourful flowers worked well for these small, simple parcels, and a few had the bonus of pretty heart-shaped petals. I topped up some flowers from my mum's garden with some sneaky purchases from e-bay - very inexpensive also and a great prop!

    summer flowers gift wrap

    The flowers are pretty delicate so I used a scalpel to place the flowers on the paper and also pull apart the petals (on the heart-shaped flowers) on a cutting mat. I added a tiny bit of clear glue (or PVA glue) to attach them to the brown paper.

    pressed flowers gift wrap ideas

    summer flowers gift wrap

    {Items above: similar brown strung tags, pink jute twine, pastel washi tape} 

    PRESSED FLOWERS GIFT WRAP

    {Above: gold glitter alphabet stickers}

    PRESSED FLOWERS GIFT WRAP

    I cut the leaves above from a few different shades of green {from this pastel washi tape set and this matte colours washi tape set.} It's easiest to cut and shape them on a cutting mat and then transfer them over. Don't make too many incisions in the leaf or it will be dificult to position.

    PRESSED FLOWERS GIFT WRAP

    {Above: gold glitter tape.}

    I don't think I'll ever tire of wrapping with pimped-up brown paper and plain brown tags! What's your go-to gift wrapping style?

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    You might also like:

    - Sew your own paper gift bags

    - Brown paper stamped Christmas gift wrap

    - Make, wrap, mingle

    // Follow my Pinterest gift wrapping board here.

  • 3 easy age gift wrapping ideas

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    It's no secret that I like to gift wrap but I do generally stick to plain brown paper, usually recycled from a delivery. Still, I like to make a parcel a little bit special and today I'm sharing a few very easy gift wrapping ideas which celebrate the birthday age! Some people are extremely sensitive about their age (in my case it is two youngish male friends who steadfastly refuse to tell me their age) so if it's not a landmark celebration, you might want to be sure they'll appreciate it! In my opinion we should celebrate every birthday as in ten years we'll look back and think we were so young! I can remember very little of significance from when I was 30, because it was so long ago, but I meet people with so much anxiety around a big birthday - some as young as 30 even starting to think about Botox!

    Anyway, if you have a friend who's having a significant birthday or who you know makes so secret of the fact, I'm sure they will love the personal touch of any of the below gift wrapping ideas.

    1. Photograph number landmarks and print the photos 

    Polaroid gift wrap

    I've been saving this for ages - it's a photograph of a table outside an Italian ice-cream cafe near Clapham Common bandstand. Just waiting for the 41 year old friend with a summer birthday so I can roll this one out! There's lot of easy services to print your Instagrams or iphone photos. I printed this from the Printic app a few years ago, and it arrived from France within a few days and in a very stylish orange envelope. I've also used Social Print Studio and found their quality also to be good (thicker than Printic, which is nice for a gift tag, though you'll need to order a larger quantity.) 

    If you spot an appropriate number while you're out and about, you can easily photograph it and save it for an appropriate birthday! Can anyone suggest a number-themed hashtag on Instagram to give us some ideas of where to go and be snap-happy? Or if you know any good London number spots, please share the location in the comments!

    (Tape: similar glitter tape here.)

    2. Look out for vintage ephemera

    I bought the below old price labels at Chiswick car boot sale in West London, which had (at least the time I went) a stall with all kinds of vintage ephemera and paper. Even if I someday become a minimalist (a change I've seen happen to many as they've gotten older) I expect I'll keep picking up these bits, which make great photo props and it's a bonus if they fit a birthday too! One of my joys is having the time to rummage through my ephemera box of old French comics, sewing patterns, shorthand books and numerous other bits of paper long forgotten by their original owner, but much loved by me. Usually, after a few years have passed, I might consider cutting them up even though it seems like a little bit of a sacrilege!

    For the below I'm waiting for a 42 year old - and unless I'm totally confident of my present-picking abilities, maybe one who's given me a list! (I'm all about the list, by the way.)

    Easy age gift wrapping ideasAlso used:

    Black washi tape

    Black and white bakers twine

    age gift wrap

    3. Decorate with vintage stamps

    Postage stamp gift wrappingpostage stamp gift wrap

    I love decorating with old stamps and always have some in my craft stash. I used to work across the street from Stanley Gibbons in London, and I loved to pop in at lunchtime and to the other traditional stamp shops on the Strand. I'm not sure how many people from my publishing company were using their lunch hour for such pursuits but I loved the history, the specialised nature of it and the clientele. Who exactly is shopping in there? I'm not sure I've ever met a stamp collector in real life but I can see the appeal. Please reveal yourself in the comments if that's you! For crafting and essential gift wrap kit you can buy inexpensive bulk packs in places like WH Smith, who stock lots of designs including these bird stamps. You may have to trawl through your pack a bit to find countries which have age-appropriate currency (see my Polish and Vietnamese stamps below - their stamps come in denominations of 30 and 40 - bonus!) 

    Vintage postage stamps gift wrap

    Which is your favourite? I'd love to hear any ideas you might have! If you have some brown paper and washi tape, there are so many possibilities!

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    Other gift wrapping ideas you might like:

    Wrapping with sheet music

    Sew your own paper gift bags

    Liberty print gift wrap

    Gift wrapping supplies from here.

  • Liberty print washi tape

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    I love the patterns on this Liberty print washi tape (now discontinued.) I created a couple of easy gift wrapping ideas using a patchwork design and also a flower design created with my trusty scalpel. I hope they give you some inspiration for spring!

    I've also rounded up 10 easy-to-copy washi tape wrapping ideas I've tried out over the years. If you sign up to our mailing list, you'll receive our free PDF with ideas that I guarantee will inspire you!

    Liberty print gift wrapping

    Meri Meri Liberty print

    Liberty print washi tape

    We've used these items in the above:

    - Pink and white bakers twine 

    Check out our range of patterned washi tapes here.

    Sign up for our free PDF here.

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     You might like these previous gift wrapping ideas:

    - Sew your own paper gift bags

    - Christmas carol gift wrapping ideas

    Christmas wrapping ideas

  • Make wrap mingle

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    We had such a great day a few weekends ago at the #makewrapmingle afternoon we hosted with Zeena Shah. It was a crafting bonanza, with gift wrapping demonstrations from Geraldine from Little Big Bell, confetti crackers, secret envelope making and lots more! We also had lots of stunning hair braids and waves courtesy of Prettly.

    Papermill Studios London

  • Sew your own paper gift bags

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    Make your own wrapping paper
  • Carol music wrapping paper

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    I love all types of ephemera, and went a little crazy buying old Christmas carols books on Ebay recently. I've used different pages to wrap parcels in lots of different ways. You can photocopy the pages to extend them a bit longer but I love the yellowed quality and feel of the original paper.

    Music wrapping paper

    sheet music wrapping paper

    Items used above: silver glitter parcel stickers / lowercase stamps / mistletoe stamps / black ink.

    music note wrapping paper

    Items used above: Black and white bakers twine / glitter letter stickers / jingle bells / gold glitter stars.

    Items used above: Jute twine / brown strung tags / gold star stickers / metallic tape set / copper fairy lights.

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    You might also like:

    - 3 easy age gift wrapping ideas

    - Liberty print washi tape

    - Sew your own paper gift bags

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