Friday, November 27, 2009

Gift Wrapping Tips & More

Now that my shopping is done, I have to tackle the job of sorting & wrapping gifts. We have 1 December baby (27th) and 1 January baby (15th), so when I shop for Christmas, if I find a good deal, I also birthday shop, which means sorting those items out from the Christmas items, as well.

***Read all the way to the bottom of this post! ;)

Here are some of my tips to help you out this year.

  1. Call up your friends or relatives, and have a Wrap Party. Everyone brings gifts, wrapping paper, and you wrap, wrap, wrap, out of the eyes of prying kids. Also helpful? Additional adults who can write out disguised Santa tags.
  2. Pick your paper carefully. If you have kids who snoop, one way to help deter them a bit is by not adding a tag to the paper when you wrap it. But to do that, you need to select 1 or 2 specific papers per child- and make a note of it! Cut a small scrap of each paper used, and tape it into a notebook with a name, so you can reference who gets what when you add tags on Christmas Eve. Or, simply tell the children which paper is theirs on Christmas Morning
  3. Skip bows when wrapping if you are not putting them directly under the tree- they always fall off, or get crushed. I add bows to the gifts on the top of the pile as we play Santa on Christmas Eve. That way, there are bows, but without the crushed, knocked off pile left on the bottom.
  4. If Santa still visits your house, and your children are still believers, then it is an absolute MUST to set aside a different wrapping paper for Santa gifts. I know, this seems like a no-brainer, but it took my then-3-year-old daughter exclaiming, "Look Mom, Santa uses the same wrapping paper as you!" to realize that maybe I should use a different paper for him. Now, I buy paper with Santa on it, and tags with Santa on them, and those are only for use on Santa gifts.
  5. If you have holiday get togethers to go to, pick a separate paper for each location. This way, when it's time to sort out gifts to bring, you can visually do it faster than by sorting through names.
  6. Buy your paper after Christmas! This way, it's cheaper. Stock up on it, and pack it away with the Christmas decorations. Last year, I found 9 rolls of gorgeous holographic designed wrapping paper for just $.19 a roll at CVS a few weeks after Christmas. I bought all 9. There isn't much on each roll, but at $.19, it's still cheaper than anything I'd be able to get this year.
  7. Use newspaper. Oldie, but it works, and recycles! You can wrap in regular newspaper or comics. If you use regular, you can easily decorate it with markers or ink pads. Additionally, you can use brown paper bags cut flat to wrap smaller items in. Why spend $1.99 or $2.99 on a roll of paper? Where does it wind up? In the trash, torn to bits. 
  8. Got a new stuffed animal? Don't wrap it! Tie a ribbon around it's neck, and nestle it in the branches of the tree. The kids just love seeing an immediate gift.
  9. If you are wrapping something small, buy some dishtowels at Dollar Tree, and some wired ribbon, and wrap the gift in a festive towel. It doubles as a second gift, and looks nice.
  10. Looking for boxes to wrap in? Save boxes you get from the store- cereal boxes, etc. Wrap the box up, so the paper is covering everything, and cut the top flaps off the box. Wrap the item with tissue paper, and use the box similar to a gift bag, with tissue sticking out the top.
  11. Want a unique name tag? Dollar Tree and other stores have miniature clay ornaments this year that are flat on the back. Write the name on the back of the recipient, and tie it to the box with some pretty ribbon. It doubles as a gift!
  12. Is it small? Why spend $1 on a gift bag, when you can spend a $1 on a stocking? Put the name on the front in glitter glue, and have tissue paper sticking out of the top. It doubles as a gift and a Christmas decoration. Or, go cheaper- make a stocking out of materials on hand!
 Feel free to add your own wrapping tips & hints in the comment section!

Oh, and the best part of this post? I'm giving away a FREE Christmas DVD of Fred Claus! Simply comment on the post for your chance to win a FREE Christmas DVD. The winner will be chosen on Tuesday, December 1st. Please include an email address! If I can not get a hold of the winner, a new winner will be picked!

Extra entries will not be given on this one, but please feel free to blog about the contest! The winner will be chosen using

This DVD was bought new this year, and was opened & watched one time, before I found that I had a copy packed away with the Christmas gifts from last year! I must have received it as a gift, because I have no memory of having bought it before.

This copy is the standard movie, not HD, widescreen, or Blu-Ray. This movie will work in all standard DVD players.

Due to high shipping costs, this contest is good for people who live in the US only!


Jenn said...

Yay! I can comment now. Enter me to win please. i always love a good family DVD.

Anonymous said...

Love the tips! Gives me ideas to be a little more creative this year.

Marsha Cooper said...

Please enter me in the contest :)

Anonymous said...

heather, i really enjoying reading all your post oon michigan tightwades and on your frugal family blogs. they are very helpful for someone who is trying to be more crafty. and offering gifts that is so gererous of you well hope you enjoy you holidays

Unknown said...

I love the great tips that you always have. This would be a great DVD to have

Mad in Crafts said...

Excellent tips! I hadn't heard of the different paper for each get-together idea before. I will definitely use it!

Ooh, and if you want to have me win the prise, that would be okay too. :P

PS Totally jealous of your sister's Fontani nativity set. It's what I drool over every time I go to Bronner's.

JRFrugalMom and Family said...

Fantastic tips Heather. I of course would love to be entered in the contest as well.

I actually saw a tip in a movie yesterday. To wrap an assembled barbie house, they simply wrapped a huge box with open bottom and put over it. I will have to use that one for one of our big items that will be hard to wrap, when assembled.

Thanks for reminding me to start saving some newspapers.

Unknown said...

Those are some great ideas. I always buy my wrapping paper after Christmas. I have a plastic tote that I store it in so it does not get smashed.

Anonymous said...

I love reading your post I make my hubby read them to we are all about saving money and my kids and I love making crafts.

my two children have many friends that live far away. So when there friends would come to visit. My kids would want to give them thing from around the house and also rap them!!

So my daughter and I started cutting the bottom off brown paper bags we would get from the grocery store and cutting them down the middle, place them on the table with blank side of the bag face up. The kids would go to town, painting ,drawing , glittering and sometimes putting real family photo on the bags. Then rapping the gifs in brown bags.

Anonymous said...

Those are awesome tips!
I LOVE gift wrapping, if only i
could make a livin at it!
Please enter me in your contest, the kids and I haven't seen Fred Clause yet!!

Unknown said...

I absolutely loved your tips. YOu had a lot of great ones. Please enter me into the contest. My email adress is

Stina said...

enter me in too! i *love* your blog! it's fantastic...lots of wonderful creative tips!

i had an idea for cheap wrapping paper...i;m not sure how cheap it is for everybody...(as my husban is in the line of work he is) we have done the whole using newspaper option, but i believe you can get packing paper pretty cheaply (i can get it dirt cheap...but as i said, it;s all in who i am married to)and it's great for wrapping presents. you can decorate it to look really crafty like or you can just unroll a bunch and let the kids go to town with doodling and drawing. it is so fun for them to see who's present thier artwork is on!

Expressions by Heather said...

Stina, that's a great tip! My mom did that one year, years ago. She got her hands on one of the huge rolls like they have at the post office, and then she and my younger sister used stamps to decorate the top of the package!

Good luck everyone! The winner will be drawn on Wed, but the entries end tomorrow at midnight!

Joanna said...

Great tips! Please enter me in the contest. Thanks!

Tonya said...

Awesome ideas!

Please enter me in the contest!

The Crammonds said...

I love the ideas of different paper for different locations! It would help a ton.


The Sheppard Bunch said...

Great tips! I am totally addicted to your blog! Please enter me in the contest : )

The Van Guilder Family said...

Great wrapping tips. I remember noticing that Santa used a different wrap when I was young... I continued that tradition with my kids. I'm not sure if they have noticed. lol

Jen VG