Wrapping gifts during the holidays can be daunting. It can be both a time and money sucker. How many times have you vowed to resort to all gift cards for presents next year? Here are 17 tips you can use to help make your wrapping more enjoyable while saving you both time and money and that is what we are about here at Cabin Creek!
1. Know the stores and where to get the best deals. Unfortunately, there is not one store that has all the best deals. Here are the top stores to save you money on your wrapping supplies. Hobby Lobby ½ off Holiday Sales. Wrapping paper, gift boxes, and bows can often be the best bet here. Walmart gift labels is the smart choice here. Dollar Tree and Dollar General are great choices too for wrapping paper and tape. Costco is another choice for savings and often have great deals on gift bags along with Walmart. When you are looking for wrapping paper don’t just look at the price. Look at the square footage you are getting and you may be surprised at who is giving the best deals.
2. Let’s talk tape for a minute. Raise your hand if this is or has been you at one point in time. How many times have you wasted minutes upon minutes trying to find the end of the tape? How many times have you starting picking at the tape only to find you weren’t even picking at the end but somewhere in the middle of the roll? There is a very complex little gadget (just being sarcastic!) called a tape dispenser that I have found online for as little as $1.88. Since I have used one, I can’t tell you how much easier it is to get the right amount of tape you need to stick on your wrapping paper. No more tearing with your teeth and getting tape stuck to your mouth. The trick is you can get a larger roll of tape to go on the dispenser vs running out of the disposable ones just as you are getting into your wrapping. This has also happened to me is that I run out of tape just as I got my rhythm going with wrapping. This little gadget is well worth it!
3. What about boxes? We all have those items that don’t wrap well. Against the wishes of the hubby, I now save throughout the year different size boxes I get from ordering items online. Everyone I bet has an Amazon box or two laying around! Break them down and fold them flat for easier storage and you can tape them back up. I also have a roll with dispenser for packing tape handy to close up my boxes. These can be folded and kept in the basement or garage for storage and to get them out of the way. Hint: packing tape is just as horrible to find the end as regular cellophane tape so I fold back a quarter inch so I have a edge that won’t stick to the roll and it makes it easier and quicker to find the end and get started. If I buy any boxes at all for wrapping gifts, I look for a deal on shirt boxes.
4. Now that we have been talking tape, cheaper is not always better. How many times have you had the tape tear or split and stick to your fingers and end up wadding the piece up and starting over? Make sure the tape is a decent quality because by the time you get it to work you are using way more than you planned on it ends up not being any cheaper. I have never used it but some people like to use double sided tape with wrapping to make it look nicer without seeing all the tape. For as long as the it takes the kids to rip off the paper, I have never worried about that! You may have that special gift you want wrapped and looking beautiful so give the double sided tape a try.
5. Let’s consider the consequences of wrapping too early. One year I waited way to long to get started on wrapping. I spent more of Christmas Eve night wrapping and was worried I was not going to get it done by the time the kids got up extra early to see what Santa brought. I swore I would never do that again. Well here’s what happened next. I started very early in December to start wrapping. By the time Christmas rolled around the bows were off or smashed, several of the tags fell off and I had to take the wrapping off to see who’s gift it was and it ended up being the same type of disaster! Now I have learned and have it down to a science. I still start early but no bows or tags until it gets closer to Christmas. I take a sharpie and write the name big enough so I can see it and small enough for the tag to cover it up so no having to unwrap to see who gets that gift!
6. This little hack seems too simple to mention but I know there are more people like me that needs to hear this! Organize your work space. Have you ever tried to wrap a gift on a bed because it was the largest clear work space you had? How about wrapping on the floor. Couldn’t do that now if you paid me! Now at wrapping time one of my tables get completely cleared off and I assemble all the necessary tools to wrap gifts. The scissors, tape, bows, tags, etc. are all assembled and ready to go. It becomes an assembly line and we power through the wrapping. I pull away all the chairs from the table and away we go.
7. Use the gift-wrapping paper with the lines/grids on the backside for easy cutting and making sure you are cutting straight.
8. I have written about this before when talking about my stocking stuffer sack hack which is taking a piece of paper and a plastic grocery bag. Write the name on the bag and staple it several times to the bag. They come off too easy if you are stingy with the staples! Each person has their own colored tissue paper to wrap stocking stuffers with. No tags no writing, just writing down the color code and the names for a back-up. When the paper is flying at Christmas the kids never loose their stocking stuffers because they all know which paper is theirs. We can take this theory over to the main gifts. I have not done this yet because we have a very large family and would be too many different types of wrapping paper to buy. I think it is a worthy idea for some. Each person would have their own color or pattern of wrapping paper so again no tags no fuss just need to know which wrapping paper belongs to whom.
9. Here is one for the DIYers. Get a roll of brown craft paper and make your own wrapping paper using stencils and paints or markers or using ink pads and stamps. Enlist your little elf helpers to join in on making the wrapping paper.
10. These next two ideas I found in a blog post by Matthew Bath for Wisebuy. Wrap your gifts on the diagonal of the wrapping paper and this method leads to less wrapping paper used
11. If you do not have any gift boxes and you are trying to wrap an article of clothing (Fess up we have all been there) no worries. If you have any card board or card stock around the house cut out a piece to fit the bottom of the article of clothing you are trying to wrap. This gives some firm edges for your wrapping paper and less rips and tears. It also looks a lot better not all bunchy and sloppy looking. I must confess I have wrapped a few like that in my day!
12. Keep an inventory of wrapping supplies as you wrap gifts this year so you can take advantage of the clearance sales so you are ahead of the game going in to next years wrapping. Buy what you will need not just buy because it is on sale and then you end up with more of what you don’t need and less of what you really need.
13. Don’t be afraid to use gift bags for any hard to wrap gifts. Bags come in all sizes and are a great idea for big items such as bicycles or other large items that are hard to wrap. Get creative. My husband is very well known for wrapping gifts to make them look like something else. For example, he introduced me to hunting which I love very much being outdoors and in the woods. On the day he proposed he wrapped up my new shot gun to look like a broom and taped my engagement ring to the barrel of the gun! I loved watching the kids try to guess what they were opening because we all know they think they are so smart!
14. If you are into glam and would like to add a touch of pro to your Christmas wrapping, I must confess I like to do this! Pick a theme of colors for your wrapping paper and make sure the colors fit the color scheme of your tree. Try to stick to 3 colors. White, gold, and silver go with most all colors. This year I am looking at black red and white. I do love the red and black buffalo plaid!!
15. One last tip from the Wise Buying post I read from Matthew Bath. I really like this one a lot and am going to have to try it. With prints being so inexpensive, instead of tags use the photos of the people you are getting gifts for so they look for their picture instead of their name. I got to thinking, with little ones that can’t read or write their name yet what an awesome thing for them to be able to find their gifts under the tree by looking for a picture of themselves. What a great idea!!
16. When “wrapping things up” for the season and putting away your supplies, take the time to store things properly so your wrapping stash is as good as new next year when you pull it out. Also, guilty here as well. I have thrown out bows that have gotten ruined as well as a good deal of wrapping paper I shoved away in the storage cubby that became unrolled and had to cut off a good section of paper that was crumpled and ruined. I can’t tell you how great it is to take the supplies out of their storage containers and they look as nice as when I packed them.
17. Last but not least, I always keep a spool of “curling” ribbon handy if I run out of bows. If you have ever used it, it is pretty handy and makes some very nice bows and you can even get creative and fancy by using more than one color. You take the ribbon and run it through the blade of your scissors and it curls right up and can make a very pretty bow. I open the scissors, take the cut piece of ribbon and with one hand I quickly pull the ribbon across the bottom part of the scissors. It takes a little bit to get the knack of it but if you don’t like how it turned out just run it through again until you like the amount of curl you get. The faster you go the tighter the curls!
Bonus: I found this in HGTV and I have included the link. It is "5 Ways to Make Giving Cash A Lot More Fun". Very creative ways to wrap cash!
Here are a couple of custom-made checklists for you to help make your holiday season run more smoothly. To get all the ones I have created so far this month, all pertaining to preparing for the holidays grab your spot on the list. In the message section just write me a note to include the back issues of Christmas printables.
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Have an awesome rest of the week and thanks for stopping by!