Gorgeous gifts without all the clutter

To keep wrapping paper from overwhelming our closet, I tend to buy a single roll of matte silver paper to use on all our gifts. Silver is nice because it works well for holidays, weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, and thinking-of-you presents. Plain brown butcher paper can work great, too, as an all-purpose gift wrap.

If you go the minimalist route with your wrapping paper, you might want to spruce up your gift with ribbons or bows. I like to keep things simple, so I typically just reuse nice ribbons that were attached to gifts other folks gave to me. A steam iron quickly gets out the wrinkles, and no one else is the wiser (well, at least they weren’t before I wrote about it).

The website NotMartha recently linked to a Martha Stewart project that is right up my simple-wrapping alley.

Simply using construction paper and a razor blade, this plain brown package is transformed into a beautiful gift. Easy, multifunctional materials, and whimsical — a great idea without all the clutter. Learn how to make a similar pop-up personalized bow with Martha’s step-by-step illustrated instructions.

55 Comments for “Gorgeous gifts without all the clutter”

  1. posted by Jay on

    Sometimes for smaller gifts for our kids (ages 3 and 6), we hide unwrapped gifts around the house. The kids have fun looking for and finding the gifts.

  2. posted by Tabbycat on

    I haven’t given out gifts to anyone by my boyfriend and my grandmother since I started college. but even before then I stopped with the wrapping paper. Me and my boyfriend either put the gift in a bag we already have or wrap a towel around it for each other. for anyone else he buys a gift for its free newpaper or one of those free ad papers. Everyone else gets a gift bag or just a bag I have lying around. Kids don’t care how their gifts are wrapped. For wedding I just give gift cards for places they registered, or I give cash. The amount i give is whatever I can afford, not based on how much they spent on the wedding or per plate. I have been to one really fancy wedding but my bf took care of the gift b/c it was his friends wedding, and they had a thing online where you could contribute to the honey moon. The other weddings I’ve been to were cheaper buffet style or salad and sandwiches.

  3. posted by Charissa - The Gifted Blog on

    Lovely. I saw this and notmartha’s version and was very inspired. I wasn’t thinking about how they apply to Unclutterer, though! I write a blog about gift wrapping and Unclutterer definitely motivated me to wrap creative gifts with my one trusty roll of kraft paper when we lived in our first (small) apartment as a married couple. I’ve expanded to more supplies now but I love trying to use what I have on hand to make something special to give. Thanks for your influence!

  4. posted by ecuadoriana on

    I’ve gone simple in the gift wrap department for years and years. I like to reuse any packing material that I have as gift wrap. One year everyone got gifts (b-day, weddings, house warmings, thank you’s, etc. I don’t do christmas) wrapped in green bubble wrap! Another year everyone got gifts wrapped in the glossy circulars that come in as junk mail (less messy and more colorful than newsprint, although sunday comics pages are great).

    I’ve used aluminum foil, fabric scraps, my daughters endless scribble drawings, old college text book pages (!!!), and the endless supply of padded or regular mailing envelopes (that I always hate to throw out because I know that I could use them someday), large aluminum cans (washed out well of course) have made humorous gift packages…

    The imagination is endless when it comes to getting rid of my paper (and plastic, scraps, etc.) clutter and turning it into gift packaging. I haven’t bought a roll of gift wrap in almost 30 years! And of course many gift wrap packages are decorated with the remnants of gift wrap, bows, ribbons, etc. that I’ve received. The oddest thing I did: One time I had a huge bag of packing peanuts (which of course I hate anyway). I wrapped gifts in colorful magazine and junk mail flyers, covered the paper with a layer of clear craft glue, then rolled the whole thing in my bag of packing peanuts. The packages looked like they were wrapped in marshmallows and were a hilarious hit with all the recipients who thought I was so darned clever, when in fact I am so darned frugal (read: cheap!).

    About 15 years ago a friend gave me, as a joke, what I consider the height of tacky: A winter themed sweater complete with bells, bows, danggly ribbons, applique reindeer, santas, wreaths, etc. So, later I used the sweater to wrap a gift to a mutual friend who kept the sweater and used it to wrap a gift to another mutual friend! This 100% polyester (will last forever!) sweater has been making the rounds ever since. It is always a surprise and a mystery as to who will be the next victim (I mean recipient!).

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    posted by GiftExpressions on

    This is such a cute idea! I have about six or seven rolls of wrapping paper usually at one time, and then bags of gift bags, bows, and stray pieces of wrapping paper. It does get cluttered. I hadn’t thought of your solution, but it’s a good one. Thanks!

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