Frugal Giftwrap Part 1: A Thrifty Alternative to Costly Wrapping Paper

Frugal giftwrap costs less than buying expensive squares of wrapping paper. It can also make the gifts you give more special.

With each frugal giftwrap in the list, you’ll find suggestions for embellishing and adorning it. These are just ideas to get you thinking.

There are all sorts of ways you can decorate frugal gift wraps. Consider sewing notions, small kitchen items, small toys, and craft items. Bits of nature, holiday ornaments, and stickers are also good trimmings.

• Bandanas – Quick, easy, cheap, and colorful! Use hair accessories, pins, or buttons with slogans to hold the package closed.

• Brown Paper Bags – Cut bags with writing on them so they lay flat. Turn them so the print is on the inside. Tie with jute, raffia, or colorful ribbons. Adorn the wrapped package with things from nature: pinecones and seedpods, sprigs of berries, dried flowers, or small branches.

• White Paper Bags – Again, if they have printing on the outside, cut them open and turn them inside out. Add designs with paints, markers, or crayons. White packages are a blank canvas for your creative touch.

• Baskets – Laundry baskets, woven baskets you find at second hand stores or garage sales, and plastic berry baskets. Line them or decorate them according to the type of basket, the gift, and the recipient.

• Butcher Paper – This paper is pure white and shiny. It is a good medium for finger painting. Find it in the grocery store by the freezer bags and aluminum foils. Rolls are large but you can use this frugal giftwrap any occasion throughout the year.

• Shopping Totes – You can buy inexpensive shopping totes for less than you can buy fancy gift-wrap. Look for them in mesh, shiny plastic, and canvas. If you are crafty, consider making felt bags from unwashable wool sweaters. Land’s End and L.L. Bean totes aren’t inexpensive, but they are frugal because they last for years.

• Dish Towels – Dishtowels are naturals for wrapping housewarming presents, gifts of food, or kitchenwares. Use kitchen gadgets, cookie cutters, or a colorful mug filled with hot cocoa mix for embellishments.

• Boxes – Wrap them with another frugal giftwrap paper or cloth. But, instead of wrapping the box and lid as one unit, wrap each separately. When you use the wrapped box, secure it closed with ribbon or another tie, not tape or glue. Also, tie on the gift card and trimming. Reuse the box without re-wrapping it until it looks shabby.

• Boxes – Some are pretty enough that they don’t need a paper covering. Just add ribbon or other embellishments.

Go to Frugal Gift Wrap Part 2: Inexpensive Trimmings Dress Your Gifts In Style Frugal gift wrap personalizes packages. Regular gift-wrapping paper can be cheapest. Here are frugal alternatives. Try these if you are out of regular giftwrap and trim or if you want to be creative.

Go to Frugal Gift Wrapping Part 3: Inexpensive and Personalized Gift Wraps Frugal gift wrapping can be fun wrapping. Tightwads make a game of trading tins. Trim the packages with toys or lace. Add a bit of yourself to the wrapping on each of your gifts.

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