Collection of eco friendly christmas boxes

How to ditch the Christmas wrapping paper

With all the waste, Christmas isn't great for the environment. But it isn't all doom and gloom. We can all help to reduce the environmental impact of Christmas in small ways, starting with how we package our gifts.

December 3, 2020

Let’s face it, wrapping paper doesn’t last long before it’s ripped apart to reveal the gift underneath. Nowadays, lots of wrapping paper is coated in plastic, so it can’t go into the recycling bin; the same goes for any paper products which feature glitter.

You’ll be surprised to find there are lots of things around your home that you can use instead – or when it comes to reducing waste, the op shop can be your best friend.

Ideas for gift wrap

  • Brown paper wrapping or bags are really versatile and like a blank canvas - and they can be recycled (as long as they’re not coated with anything).
  • Save plain paper shopping bags from stores.
  • Collect interesting magazine pages, newspapers and old sheet music.
  • Save plain white paper or tissue paper that you’d otherwise recycle.
  • Gently used scarves are great for wrapping oddly shaped gifts.
  • Use new tea towels as a wrapping and make them part of your gift.
  • Use children’s artwork – or get them to draw something especially for Christmas wrapping paper.
  • Use any fabric off-cuts you may have laying around.
  • If you’re handy with a sewing machine, you could make your own gift bags from fabric scraps which can be reused.
  • Left over wallpaper is also a great option and a unique gift-wrapping option.
  • Hang on to this year’s Christmas cards to make gift tags for next year!

Get crafty with your wrapping

  1. Decorate with leaves from your garden or woody herbs such as rosemary which won’t wilt.
  2. Try your hand at potato stamping.
  3. Cut out star shapes or snowflakes from the page of an old book.
  4. Decorate with bright buttons that you might have lying around (or visit an op shop – they always have lots).
  5. Make your own pom poms out of wool.
  6. Dry some orange slices and combine them with cinnamon sticks for a fragrant decoration.
  7. Try and find some gum nuts or interesting seed pods in the park.
  8. Use twine made from natural materials.
  9. Decorate with an op shop brooch or jewellery.

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