Zero Waste Gift Wrapping Ideas


Last Christmas (I gave you my heart, haha sorry I had to) while my family and I were unwrapping presents I stopped towards the end and looked at our big plastic bag of wrapping paper and thought: 'wow, that's a lot of waste' and we are only one family not even giving that many gifts so I actually got stressed thinking about how much it must be worldwide. Have you ever stopped to wonder how much paper is thrown into landfills every December? Last year I did exactly that and I couldn't even imagine how much it actually is.

We throw away around 4 million pounds of wrapping paper. That is enough paper to cover over 5000 football fields. That is insane! And since wrapping paper is dyed and laminated it makes it super difficult to recycle, if not impossible.

This year we will not have a big plastic bag filled with wrapping paper, ribbons and what not going straight to landfills. So, what instead?

With these alternatives you will save money because you do not have to spend money on wrapping paper each year. You will also save the environment from a lot of waste and therefore help preventing the planet from being destroyed.

Let's get into some low/zero waste gift wrapping:

Gift bag:
Last year I thought, why not use a bag to wrap presents? That way even the wrapping can be used afterwards and there is no waste. So I threw some gifts into a bag and tied a bow to close it off. If you want to make them yourself, you can find inexpensive fabric at the thrift store, then just click right here for a guide  but you can also buy totes or use the ones you have, you don't have to give the bag as well. When the gifts have been unwrapped you can simply take the tote bags with you.

Fabric and twine:
There is so much fabric at the thrift store which can be used again and again to wrap gifts. So, instead of throwing the wrapping material into a bin going to landfills you can reuse it again and again whenever you want to gift something, how smart is that? Tie a bow without tying a knot, that way the ribbon or twine can be reused for future gifts. No tape or wrapping paper needed, yes please!

Star gift decoration:
If you want to be more creative and decorative with your gifts then there are definitely eco friendly ways to do that. One way is to make these starts with branches and some twine. Super easy and gives a rustic look to the gift. Tie a gift as you normally would but before you make the bow place the star underneath. Again, with everything else, they can be used again and you can even throw a string around them and use then to decorate you home.

See how to make the stars here. 

Dried orange decoration: 
If you wish to decorate with some color then these dried citrus fruits are a great idea because they are super easy to make and can be reused again and again + they are biodegradable. Dry oranges, mandarins, lemons or limes and add then to your gift wrapping for a high effort look that will definitely be eye catching.

See here how to make the dried citrus slices.

Recycled paper: 
We received a package in the mail with a lot of brown paper - first of all why? but then we decided to use it to wrap presents in. And since we do not use tape but twine only we can reuse it again and again until it breaks. Yay for recycling! If you receive a gift wrapped in paper you can also save that and use it to wrap your gifts.

Spruce gift decoration:
Another way to spice up the wrapping with even less effort than the star decoration (we like that),  is to throw a piece of spruce on top of the gift and tie a bow around. If you want to find them in nature make sure you do not do anything that's illegal - I do not know how it is in other countries but here in Denmark I do not think it is legal to cut branches from trees that are not yours.

Newspaper:
From what I have read, newspapers are biodegradable. They are something people just throw away after they have been read so why not save them and use them for wrapping your gifts? Use twine to secure the paper from unwrapping and you can use reuse it until it breaks.

Thank you for reading! Which zero waste gift wrapping idea do you like the best? 

Soluuna