As fun and thoughtful as the Christmas season is, especially when taking into account all the gift giving, the holidays can also be somewhat wasteful. Just think about all the wrapping paper that is used to make your gifts look nice – only for it to be ripped apart and tossed away. It’s a huge waste and not a very environmentally friendly tradition. However, it is a tradition – and receiving your presents without any wrapping paper takes some of the excitement of the surprise out of it. Instead of using store-bought wrapping paper this year, consider using these six eco friendly wrapping paper alternatives instead:
Old Newspapers –
Newspapers have a great visual quality and texture to them, making them perfect for use as wrapping paper. Use different sections of the newspaper to make the gifts more personal. For example, use the sports section for your sports-loving friend or the comic section for younger family members.
Old Calendars –
You should hold on to your old calendars because they make great wrapping paper. You can either use the portion of the calendar that depicts the pictures, or use the part that depicts the dates. Using the dates may seem boring, but it can be a great way to get creative. For example, you can use someone’s birthday month as their wrapping paper to make it a little bit more personal.
Paper Grocery Bags –
If you haven’t begun using your own reusable bags yet to buy your groceries, then you probably have a ton of folded up paper grocery bags stored away somewhere in your kitchen. Use these to wrap your gifts. They may be a little boring, especially if they have the grocery store brand stamped all over the paper, but you can personalize them by drawing whatever you want onto the blank side.
Old Maps –
Do you have any old maps sitting in the trunk of your car or stored away in your home office space? Odds are they are pretty outdated if they are more than a few years old. Because most older maps are quite colorful, they make for a perfect eco friendly wrapping paper material.
Forgo wrapping paper entirely and use an old shoebox instead. You can leave it blank and simply tie a ribbon around it or decorate the outside using markers, crayons or anything else you can think of. Don’t be afraid of reusing different types of boxes – the box has an elegant look about it that wrapping paper doesn’t provide.
Gifts as Packaging –
You may be able to use some of your gifts as the packaging itself. For example, if you are giving someone a beautiful new basket, fill it up with some of the smaller gifts that you were planning on giving to that person as well. Or if you are giving someone a new blanket, scarf or other clothing item, use that fabric to wrap another gift.
These are just a few things that you can use as alternatives to store-bought wrapping paper. Not only are they items that you would be re-using, thereby making the act of gift-wrapping much more environmentally friendly, but they are a more unique and personal way to wrap your gifts as well.