Conservation | Consider eco-friendly gift wrap material this season

Before you pull out old rolls of shiny wrapping paper or head to the store to buy more this holiday season, consider wrapping presents a different way this year. Most wrapping paper is designed for a single use since it is not easily recycled, especially glossy/shiny/metallic wrapping paper.

Ribbons and bows are also not eco-friendly because they’re made with a mix of both synthetic and natural materials and sometimes even metal. Instead of throwing ribbons away consider reusing them or incorporating them into arts and craft projects. Another option: Add foliage instead of ribbon, which makes a great decoration on a gift. 

Gift bags that are reusable can be a better option than wrapping paper, especially if they are sourced from recycled materials. Amazon acknowledges that their gift bags are currently not recyclable and must be disposed of as garbage. Recycled bags, though a bit more expensive, can be dressed up with pine cones and other interesting foliage for a holiday feel.

There is also the technique of Furoshiki, which is a traditional Japanese wrapping cloth that is square-shaped and eco-friendly. It is often used for wrapping gifts, carrying goods, or as decoration. Furoshiki can be made from many different types of fabrics. This method is inexpensive and there is little need for bubble wrap or tape.  For more information on this wrapping method check out “Etsuko Yamada’s Wrapping with Fabric: Your Complete Guide to Furoshiki the Japanese Art of Wrapping”.

When my kids were little, we used to love using butcher paper which we decorated with tempera paint drawings and handprints. We reused and enjoyed this wrapping art for years.

2 thoughts on “Conservation | Consider eco-friendly gift wrap material this season

  1. Terrific article on eco friendly gift wrapping. I bought the book and plan to teach grandkid how to do furoshiki. Using white sheets, old scarfs and some wonderful Japanese textiles . Thank you so much.

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