A tidy method for wrapping gifts

“Will you wrap this gift for me? Just don’t look inside. It’s for you.”

I’m ashamed to admit I’ve spoken this sentence. More than once.

There are many things I can do in this world. For example, I can set up a wireless printer and play the ukulele. But until recently, I could not wrap a present well. And it is all thanks to Japan.

A few days ago I was spread out on the floor with boxes, paper, tape and bows surrounding me. Despite my sustained concentration, I was turning out one lousy gift-wrap job after another. Frustrated, I turned to YouTube. A search for “gift wrapping easy” eventually led me to the “Japanese method” of wrapping a gift.

I’ve never been to Japan and don’t know if this is how most Japanese people wrap gifts, but in any case, this method is fascinating. By placing your package on a piece of paper cut just bigger that the box meant to be wrapped, slightly off center, sets you up for this unique method. The whole thing is a few, precise, neat folds to memorize and execute. With a bit of practice it shouldn’t be too hard.

This “diagonal” gift wrapping can be done quite quickly once you’ve got the hang of it and only requires three pieces of tape. I’ve even seen it done with a beautiful cloth instead of paper, which looked fantastic.

Have you tried this method? Is there another clever, atypical and ultimately effective gift-wrapping method I should know about? Please share, because I need all the help I can get.

11 Comments for “A tidy method for wrapping gifts”

  1. posted by Sassy on

    Aluminum foil and bright tape — if you tear it or it’s a bit off you can scrunch it up to take care of the problem. And it’s nice and shiny. I used it for years and still go back to it at times. My oldest kid remembered me doing it and got kudos for his nicely wrapped gift at his last white elephant gift exchange.

  2. posted by Alis on

    when my child was young, I invested in a number of decorative, heavy-duty Christmas gift boxes. They serve triple duty: they sit, unfilled, under the Christmas tree as the big day approaches, then on Christmas Eve I fill them with gifts. After Christmas, I store ornaments & other decorations inside. For gifts to be presented outside the home, I use gift bags. Quick, festive, reusable & not fussy. Merry Christmas!

  3. posted by April on

    This is sort of a modern twist on the way Japanese wrap their presents. Not the traditional way. Still pretty cool though!

    The traditional way folds the corners similarly, but they put the present in the corner of the paper, not the center. They also typically only need one piece of tape to finish it off. Sometimes two of it’s a long shape.

  4. posted by Kathy on

    This seems about 25 times more complicated than the method I use (which I imagine is the standard method), using the paper squared up rather than at a diagonal. I can’t tell whether you’ve actually tried this – if you have and it works for you, I’d say go for it. If it’s just the visual aid that’s helping, maybe watch a video of the more standard method to see if that helps. This just seems unnecessarily complicated and time-consuming.

    Otherwise, bags work great. Tuck in some (preferable color-coordinated) tissue paper to cover the gift, add a nametag, and you’re done.

  5. posted by Amber on

    I have never seen the Japanese method before but that is pretty cool. I think I will give it a shot with the remaining presents that I need to wrap. The cloth wrapping is beautiful too! Might have to try that sometime.

  6. posted by Her from There on

    I’m glad you found a system that works for you but I can’t see how you can follow this method, but not a traditional way which can be done in less steps than this! Maybe all you needed was a slowed down video showing you the traditional way of wrapping presents instead. This is how I wrap a present: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UCytLw_5VbM

  7. posted by 2labbydogs on

    My tip for gift bags is to put the tag on the tissue paper. We save and reuse our bags year after year.

  8. posted by Robin on

    I’ve seen this before and though it looks neat, I also find it complicated. I’ve never been able to duplicate it. EVERY video starts with the paper already cut so I never know how big it’s supposed to be and when I try to do it without the video, I end up with a mess.

  9. posted by Dianne on

    One video I saw said the paper should be 2x the width of the box. I don’t know if that’s much help or not.

  10. posted by Deb on

    Japenese method is too long and complicated.

  11. posted by jc on

    My mother wraps beautiful gifts with wired trims and the like. I did not inherit the skill. I sew a lot of my gifts and they usually fold 7x7x3 (inches) or smaller. I have several wallpaper sample books from which a single sheet can wrap around the above dimensions. I fold or roll the paper around the gift, tack it with a bit of tape and tie it with a piece of coordinating organdy ribbon to finish. The paper is sturdy enough to provide structure to soft/oddly shaped items without tearing. It’s also much cheaper than holiday specific wrap as I bought the sample books for $5 each and only $4.50 for a 25 yard spool of ribbon for an estimated 50 cent cost per gift.

Comments are closed.