Wrapping presents plastic-free

As the holiday’s approach everyone is starting to shop for presents and gift wrap. It seems such a lot of plastic to buy tape or glue just to wrap presents that are going to be opened in seconds.It seems such a waste – especially when these products can’t be recycled or reused. I always try to recycle as much wrapping paper as I can, although some pieces are shredded to bits and other gift-wrap I receive is completely plastic.

In all the historical films and documentaries I’ve seen, using tape to seal presents is a relatively new concept. Before this, they used brown paper and string (even in my grandmother’s youth), or wrapped in fabric if you could afford it…… So I decided that this year (as part of my zero-waste, no plastic initiative) I would re-learn how to wrap without using tape or glue.

It wasn’t as hard as I’d anticipated.

There are many alternatives to tape:

  1. Paper & string. You can buy coloured string from sewing shops or use fabric ribbon to tie the presents up. Bows can also be created from fabric – either using the traditional “shoelace” bow or a more fancy style bow (like the style you buy in plastic ribbon). o-COMICS-WRAP-570
  2. Wrap in fabric or in a scarf. Some places now sell this specific type of wrapping material including Lush, Ikea,

  3. Personalise your wrapping paper by either using magazines, maps or self-printing. This gives you the opportunity to think of the recipient’s personality while wrapping – e.g. maps for travellers/hikers, magazines on fishing/fashion/sports, etc.
    eco chici


  4. Use fabric bags – or make your own fabric bag from an old jumper/sweater.Upcycled-Sweater-Bag


  5. Use boxes, whether these be cardboard boxes or storage tins. The present can be laid inside the box and supported with tissue paper.


Not only do these methods reduce or eliminate your plastic use – but all make very personalised wrapping which is unique and one of a kind, rather than the commercialised, plasticised, “normal” method of wrapping.





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