The holidays and gifting can create a lot of waste, but it doesn't have to! In my three-part series of posts (Kids, Adults & Teens, and Wrapping), I will discuss gifting with waste and minimalism in mind!
We all have that one relative who carefully unwraps their gift and tries to salvage any wrapping paper they can while everyone else rips it open and crumples it into a big plastic trash bag. I say, be that relative! A lot of trees, water, and money go into making those wrapping materials - why not try to give it a second life? Many wrapping papers cannot be recycled, and then there are plastic ribbons, tags, and stickers, most of which will end up in the landfill.
I love wrapping gifts and value presentation when giving - I once spent an hour wrapping my best friend's birthday present! I understand that trying to avoid waste when wrapping can seem annoying, or you may think you have to compromise on the wow-factor, but you don't! You just need a little more creativity!
Here are my top 4 tips for zero-waste gift wrapping:
Reuse and salvage what you can.
Save what you can this year from gifts that you receive. Reuse shipping paper, tissue paper, and/or boxes from online purchases. Sometimes the paper may already have a cute design on it! You could also upcycle paper bags or use old newspapers - the comic section is a great option for wrapping kids' gifts! Also, you can iron out the crinkles on shipping paper with an iron - just be careful not to leave it in one spot for too long.
Reuse jars and/or tins. My mom and I saved a bunch of glass salsa jars for a few months, which I used to package baked goods and homemade hot cocoa mixes as Christmas gifts! I just painted the lids and tied some ribbon around the neck and voila! Tins are another great option for packaging gifts in; if you don't have any already, you're bound to find a bunch at your local thrift store!
Wrap in fabric. You can also wrap gifts in pieces of fabric, scarves, or tea towels, furoshiki-style! You can even reuse old clothing or blankets!
Be creative with decorating! Make your own gift tags, tie up paper packages with hemp twine or yarn, decorate plain paper wrapping with crayon - the possibilities are endless! If you need inspiration, there are plenty of ideas and tutorials available online!