Not everyone loves wrapping gifts. For some of us it would be easier to let somebody else do the job or just line up in front of a gift wrapping area in malls and viola!

But as gifts represent the feelings of the giver toward the recipient, others take more effort in making the gift more attractive. This way they take much pleasure from the look of anticipation and excitement from the receiver’s face upon accepting the gift.

There are different creative ways to wrap your gifts and these have been becoming popular especially among DIY gifts. Other people also consider using recyclable materials and challenge their creativity to make gift wrapping a form of art and making a statement about protecting our environment.

Here are some suggestions on how to wrap your gifts in more imaginative ways. I hope you will find inspiration from these ideas.

Creative Gift Wrapping Ideas: Alternatives to Traditional Wrapping Papers

Duct Tape Gift Wrap

Duct tapes make a nice touch to otherwise plain paper gift wrap. Just wrap the gift as usual then stick a strip of differently colored duct tape.  There are lots more ideas like these at Fiscal Geek.

There is a variety of paper choices which ranges from expensive foils to newspapers but in deciding your wrapper design, you might want to consider a theme or a color scheme.

  • Printed paper: There are more than a hundred ways to decorate a paper. You can use rubber stamps or cut designs out of sponges and sponge them on the paper to come up with unique designs. Another option is spray painting the paper which can also result in cool designs.
  • Decoupage: Decorate the paper with paper cut-outs. You can use old cards, family photos and other memorabilia and paste them on the paper to make an elegant wrap. Some even use unconventional materials like shredded paper or sawdust glued on the paper to make those amazing wraps.
  • Use stickers: Stickers can give the wrap a funky and playful look. You can use stickers featuring the latest Disney movie hit and children will surely adore it!
  • The natural look:Using the ordinary brown bag has become common these days especially the gift is something organic. Just add a little decorative touch like tying it with raffia and your ordinary bag won’t look ordinary anymore.
  • Fabric wrap:Another alternative is fabric gift wrap. Encasing your gift in an elegant scarf or velvet cloth will make it stand out among the rest. Besides, fabric will last longer than paper and is reusable. Using colorful dishtowels, shawls, shirts, is like handing a gift within a gift.
  • Newspaper – newspapers, either foreign or local, will give your gift a vintage look. The most common choice is the comic page but you might want to consider the taste of the receiver. A sports fanatic will find the sports page appealing and girls will surely prefer the entertainment page. In using newspapers, try to choose pages with less ads and avoid any depressing and tragic headlines or obituaries. These will probably send the wrong message to the receiver.
  • Themed wrap:Wrappers that reflect the nature of a gift. If your gift is for a chef or anyone who loves to cook, you can wrap your gift in a dishtowel. For gardeners, you can encase tools in a flower pot. For those who love coffee, you can tuck a Starbucks gift card in a special mug. For music teachers, wrap your gift in sheet music.
  • Wraps with written messages – using your computer, you can print your own personal message and wrap your gifts with it. Words like, “Thank You”, “I’m Sorry”, or “Marry Me” will make the recipient smile even before he/she opens the gift.
  • Colorful plastic bags – if you can’t find a suitable paper for your wrap, you can also reuse those colorful plastic bags. Triple-bag the gift using bags of different colors, knot the handles together, then cut out the tops and fan out the pieces.
  • Calendars- make use of those old calendars ready to be discarded by wrapping your gifts with it. You can enlarge them if you want. Use a page that falls onto that special day and encircle the date to make it more special.
  • Gift bags – if you want to skip gift wrapping altogether, you can buy gift bags and they are available in different colorful designs. Just wrap the gift in tissue paper before putting it inside. Or you can create your own gift bag using your own designed wrapping paper.
  • Decorative boxes:Some boxes already have pretty designs on them you don’t need to embellish them further. Then there is the corrugated card board that gives the gift a rustic and eco-friendly appearance. If you think this looks so plain, you can stamp, draw, or paint designs on them, or you can use raffia and a sprig of berries for a better look. Another option is applying acrylic paint on the cardboard, brush some glue on the surface, then sprinkle it with glitters. Wow!
  • Other unusual materials – putting your gifts in a homemade stocking is also a great idea. You can also try putting your gifts in mason jars, jewelry boxes, garbage bag, and aluminum foil.

Unique Wrapping Idea: Use Unique Gift Tags!

Paint Chip Gift tag

Collecting paint chips then shaping them can make into a really nice gift tag, especially on pain wrapping paper. Image and paint chip gift tag idea is found at Create Craft Love.

A gift will not be complete without gift tags. If you are bent in creating your own wrap, it is only appropriate if your gift tag is also done craftily.

  • Photo gift tags – print and edit a photo of your choosing and size them to 4”x 2.25”. Black-and-white color will give it a more vintage look but if you prefer a more colorful design, it’s up to you.
  • Old greeting cards – choose and cut attractive designs from old greeting cards and turn them into gift tags.
  • Paint chips – paint chips are perfect for gift tags. Colorful and inexpensive!
  • Mittens – the smallest mittens can be customized with thin ribbon strips attached with glue. You can use two hands and put “to” and “from” in each hand.
  • Homemade tags– the choices are endless. You can create your own gift tags using ordinary paper and embellish it with buttons, glitters, ribbons, and even empty peanut shells!

Bows and Trimmings also Make for a Unique Gift Wrap

Tissue Pompoms Creative Gift Wrap

These cute pompom made of tissue will make a boring gift wrap look exciting. Image and instructions to make tissue pompoms are found at Lia Griffith.

The simplest gift will look expensive and well-thought of with the right trim. So forget those stick-on bows and make your own trimmings to add finishing touches to your gifts.

  • Cloth ribbon – Wired ribbon makes a very easy and elegant finish to a gift. Just don’t make a bow and stick it on top; it is better to wrap the ribbon around the gift.
  • Natural adornments – decorate your gift with natural adornments like pinecones, berries, sprigs of holly, or dried flowers.
  • Ornaments – Ornaments like shells, beads, and trinkets will give your gift a festive touch.
  • Girl stuff – If the gift is for a girl, using fashionable bows, scrunchies, hair ties, or embellished ponytail holder will be perfect.
  • Colored tape – A plain-looking white box will look attractive if you use colored tape as trimmings.
  • Construction paper– Bright construction paper designed with hole punches here and there will turn into an offbeat ribbon with the help of some double-sided tape.
  • Jump rope – What’s more fun than a present tied with a jump rope?
  • Cooking paraphernalia – Cinnamon sticks, colorful measuring spoons, whisks, or spatulas will spice up an ordinary bow. Bow-shaped pasta, tied with a simple string will also make a stylish bow.
  • Buttons – Buttons are a lot easier to use. Just run the thread through the holes and place the button at the center of your present and you have a special and inexpensive bow.
  • Tiny pom-poms – Tiny pom-poms are also another alternative if you want to put in a little more effort in your gift.
  • Lace – Lace will give your gift a feminine touch. A perfect choice to adorn a gift for that special lady. Just wrap the lace around the gift and make a bow at the center with the ends hanging on the sides.
  • Fresh flowers – Fresh flowers used as bows will give your gift a stylish appearance. Use seasonal flowers and put it on simple wrappers for that simple but elegant look..
  • Yarns – Use yarn in lots of different colors and tie the pieces around the gift. The secret is in the knots. They have to be perfectly aligned. You can mix and match the different colors however you want and create a rainbow of colors on your present.

There are still more ways to decorate your gifts. It all depends on your own creativity. Just keep in mind to keep things eco-friendly. The ultimate goal: to create a great gift giving experience while eliminating waste. Although some of these wrapping paper alternatives may still require paper products, they may be used multiple times and some of them for years to come.