STOP WHAT YOU’RE DOING! We know that Holiday wrapping paper looks enticing right now. Don’t let that deceive you – almost all of those pretty little Santas or glittery snowflakes on paper are entirely NOT recyclable.
Any wrapping paper with glitter, foil, plastic, texture, or anything laminated is a contaminant to recycling facilities. That means that out of the 4.6 billion pounds of wrapping paper produced each year (in the U.S. alone!), about HALF is thrown into landfills. What a nightmare for our planet year after year!
So how can we be more conscious of our wrapping choices while also having eye-catching gifts? Don’t let that cardboard brown stop you – here’s some tips and tricks on how to spice up your sustainable gift wrapping skills this holiday season.
Kraft Paper Wrapping
We understand – brown isn’t the prettiest color in the spectrum. But who doesn’t love it more than Mother Earth herself? Kraft paper is the easiest transition from traditional wrapping paper and can be used for small and large objects alike. Unlike traditional wrapping paper, it is easily recyclable or compostable! If you’d like to take it a step further, you can also reuse newspaper, old maps, magazines, packing paper from online orders, and any other recyclable paper as a form of wrapping.
Optimize your kraft paper wrapping by decorating with nature’s ornaments. Instead of using ribbons and bows (both of which are bound for a landfill), opt for twine as a natural touch. Sprinkle on biodegradable glitter and sneak in dried citrus ornaments or plant clippings of your choosing.
For the citrus ornaments, place lemon and/or orange slices on parchment paper in the oven for two hours at 200°F, flipping them over every 30 minutes. You can find the whole tutorial on our Instagram. If cooked thoroughly, they will even last for YEARS, but then are fully compostable at the end of their life.
For greenery, try using pine, fir, rosemary, or eucalyptus. Truly, any small, green stalk that is dry of moisture would work well - get creative with what you have!
Once the holidays are over, recycle or donate your unused kraft paper to charity organizations, then compost your fruits, greens, and twine.
A Japanese tradition originally meant for transporting goods, Furoshiki wrapping has transformed Holiday gift wrapping! This super easy and beautiful form of gift wrapping enables you to use any square piece of cloth or fabric to fold and secure your gifts in style. You can either gift the fabric or reuse it year after year.
Depending on the size of your gift, the cloth can range from the size of your hand to the length of a dining table, the most common 28 x 28 inches and 17 x 17 inches. The cloth must also have a reversible pattern (for folding) and be thick enough to carry the present. You can find a quick tutorial on our Instagram.
Decorate your Furoshiki wrapping with ornaments, gift tags, or any other natural elements you’d like. Once finished, wash your fabric or cloth, compost your natural embellishments, and reuse for next year!
Wrapping in Reusable Bags
Gift wrapping got WAY easier with this technique! This year, you’ll earn bragging rights by transforming your wrapping paper into a gift of its own.
Depending on the size of your gift, any solid fabric reusable bag can be used. For a variety of gifts ranging from small to medium sizes, use our 3-pack cotton bulk bags as a simplistic and reusable gift wrapping option. Place the item inside, wrap the bag with twine, then decorate with citrus ornaments and other natural elements. Make the bag a part of the gift and your loved ones will be happy to find not only a present inside, but also a convenient bag to reuse! Find the complete tutorial here.
Whether you may choose to wrap in reusable bags, kraft paper, or Furoshiki style this holiday season, your actions will put Mother Earth and our hardworking recycling facilities at ease.
Mother Earth Thanks You!