We’re all guilty of throwing away copious amounts of wrapping paper, sellotape and unused ribbons after Christmas. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are 3 sustainable wrapping ideas that can reduce your environmental impact and make your gifts stand out amongst the rest!
1. Kraft Wrapping Paper
According to Wrag Wrap‘s wrapping paper facts, “Each year, a forest the size of Wales is required to provide all the paper used in Britain”. That’s a lot of wrapping paper. And the worst part is, none of it can be recycled. Wrapping paper is laminated with non-paper materials, which means it’ll undoubtably end up in landfill. But is there an alternative?
Brown paper, otherwise known as Kraft paper, is a brilliant substitute for wrapping paper. Not only is it 100% recyclable, it’s the perfect canvas for creativity. With hundreds of pins on Pinterest showcasing how beautiful Kraft paper wrapped gifts can be, you can truly make every gift completely individualised.
Kraft paper may seem minimalistic, but that’s where the beauty lies. You can design your gift-wrapping how you want, whilst reducing the amount of wrapping paper in landfill this Christmas. To be as eco-friendly as possible, be sure to use biodegradable tape when creating your masterpieces.
2. Fabric Bags
If using brown paper is more wasteful than you’d like, not wrapping presents is the way forward. Fabric gift bags with festive prints can save you time and money in the long run. Not only is there no waste when using these fabric bags, but they can be re-used year after year. Rather than slaving away trying to wrap an oddly-shaped present, slip it into the fabric bag and use a recyclable tag to personalise each gift. Less fuss, less waste and more re-usability for years to come.
Why not make a pledge with friends and family to use fabric bags for gifts and re-use them every year? There’ll be no wasted paper, tape or ribbons. Plus, the fear of wrapping oddly-shaped presents will be a thing of the past!
3. Natural Decorations
Rather than buying wrapping decorations that will end up in the bin after Christmas, use natural decorations instead. Leaves, branches, acorns, they all make fetching decorations for your presents to wear… and they’re free! Taking time to find natural decorations for your gifts is a personalised and thoughtful present in itself.
This doesn’t have to stop with your presents though. Creating Christmas decorations and wreaths is another way to make your Christmas unique and special. A great place to start is the Real Flower Company’s detailed post on how and what to forage for your own Christmas decorations. As foraging is a hobby in itself, why not give it a go and get out into nature?
You’ll never know what you’ll find to adorn your loving gifts and home.
TIP: Reuse and Repurpose Rather Than Recycle
Perfectly good ribbons, tags and bows are thrown away each Christmas without a second thought. This year, I urge you to remember the ‘reusability factor’ in these decorations. If any ribbons have escaped the bin and, instead, are sat patiently in a drawer: This is your year to use them!
Items like bows often have plastic stuck to them or foil lining them, meaning they’re not fit for recycling. We know these small items are collecting in massive quantities, worsening our plastic pollution problem. But if these items are reused year after year, we can keep them out of landfill.
Reusing is a much more sustainable attitude to consumption than recycling. It uses less energy and doesn’t produce additional pollution, plus you’ll get more usability for your money!
When you find things lying around the house that you’re not sure what to do with, think about how they could be repurposed. Old cloth can transform into make-shift wrapping for a present, Christmas cards can become gift tags and even potatoes can double as festive stamps! The ideas are endless and inventing new ways to reuse and repurpose old items is a whole lot of fun.
So, blow the dust off those old gift-toppers and put them to use this Christmas!
Creativity Is More Fun Than Convenience
It’s may be easy to buy cheap wrapping paper, ribbon and tape, but that doesn’t mean convenience purchasing is ideal. With these 3 sustainable wrapping ideas, you can personalise each gift, finding and using items from both inside the house and outside in nature.
Sustainable wrapping doesn’t have to look shoddy or lacking in character. It can be the most thoughtful and creative way to present a gift to someone you love.
Individualised, personalised and pinterest-worthy, sustainable wrapping is definitely worth a try this year. Plus you can help reduce the wasteful consumption our planet is suffering from.
Win – win!