Gift Wrapping: Giving the Gift Within a Gift

Last week’s post covered the infamous gift bag, the hurried person’s answer to gift wrapping. Today though, I’m extolling the greatness of gift wrapping, and I’m republishing this post for the holidays! A gift’s wrapping can be as much of a gift as the gift itself! Here’s everything you need to know about gift wrapping.

gift wrapping

Are you sitting down? You might want to sit down.

Gift wrapping gets a bum…

Wait for it…

Are you really going to make me do this?

Reasons to Dislike Gift Wrapping

Just say it!

Gift Wrapping Gets a Bad Rap

No pun intended.

Few think highly of gift wrapping though.

Please allow me to rephrase that.

People love wrapped gifts. People do not love wrapping gifts. That timeless battle between ed and ing. Wrapping gifts takes time, effort and patience. Although it can take several minutes to wrap a gift, the unwrapper destroys the masterpiece in seconds. During the holidays, however, we can find professionals to wrap gifts for us. Finally, we wrap all that paper, and none of it is recyclable.

It Takes Time and Effort

Gift wrapping takes some time. You need to work at it. The paper has to be cut to just the right size to fit the present. You don’t do it very often, so you really don’t get to practice. You pretty much start over your gift wrapping skills every November.

What’s that you say? December? We really have to talk about your procrastination.

I searched LivingSocial and Groupon, and they offer no gift wrapping courses. You’re on your own. At least, you were until I came along! (Unless you’re a gift wrapper. In that case: Opportunity!) I did find some Youtube videos. I’ll cover that later.

The Receiver Just Tears Through the Paper

The person just rips the paper to shreds anyway. You spend ten (or 498) minutes wrapping the present only to have them rip it open in a few seconds. Why even bother?

We’ll get to why later.

Just wrap your head around the idea that the speed with which a receiver unwraps a gift should in no way be tied to the time and effort spent on wrapping the gift.

It Should Be Left to the Pros

Yes, during the holidays, malls and department stores are manned with personnel, professional gift wrappers who will wrap your gifts for a small fee.

They are craftsman. Craftspeople? Craftspersons? If you want a day of appreciation, try this. After a day of gift-shopping, go to a coffee shop and order one of their fancy drinks. Marvel at the craftsmanship of the barista making your drink.

Then take your fancy coffee drink to the professional gift wrapper and savor your finely crafted coffee while watching a master craftsperson swiftly, yet delicately wrap your gifts in love and splendor.

Save some for yourself though. Take some gifts home, so you too can experience the joy of wrapping.

What About the Environment?

Gift wrapping is not recyclable. All the dyes and glittery goodness that make it so beautiful render it unrecyclable.

There are some solutions. Here are a few eco-friendly wrapping paper makers.

How about recycled?

  1. Fish Lips
  2. Green Field Paper Company
  3. Wrappily

Check your local service. For example, here is a blog post wrapping paper recycle suggestions if you live in New Orleans. has some cool ideas for some non-paper wrapping.

  1. Using clothes
  2. And here is is some gift wrapping with scarves

Shayne likes.

Reasons to Love Gift Wrapping

Unwrapping is Fun

Think of those poor souls who design and execute fireworks shows. They spend weeks, perhaps even months, designing the show and setting up the fireworks…dangerous, explosive items…only to have them literally blown up in just a few minutes.

Why? Because we love fireworks.

Why should we put all that effort into wrapping gifts?

Because we love to unwrap gifts.

They Look Nice

More than that though, we love admiring a nicely wrapped gift. Poorly wrapped gifts humor us. It’s a win-win! I’d go so far as to say that we are generally just as impressed by a poor job of gift wrapping as we a skilled job of gift wrapping.

Under the tree or wherever you put them.

It’s Relaxing

It’s soothing. Dare I say cathartic? You dared. So just enjoy relaxing and wrapping yourself.


Further still, a wrapped gift generates anticipation.

You Can Do It Though

Get the Right Supplies

Selecting the Best Paper

I have a trick for that. First. Try to buy paper with a design with lines. Then you can just cut along the lines. Even if the design doesn’t have lines, look for elements in the colors that you can use as a cutting guide.

Another option is the paper with the grid on the back. They make it easy for you. To be candid, it has only ever been by luck that I’ve ended up with that kind of paper. I don’t think it’s advertised. Although I don’t play the lottery, when I get wrapping paper with the grids on the back, I strongly consider buying a ticket.

Find a Cutter

Buy one of these gift wrap cutters.

Scotch Gift Wrap Cutter, Assorted Colors (14-RC)


Don’t worry. I’m setting up my Amazon affiliate account soon enough, and you can make sure I get a cut.

No pun intended.

That wrap cutter is my fave. Even your kids can use it. Something I’ll cover in a few minutes. Just this cutter alone will make gift wrapping pleasure.

It’s Time we Wrapped our Heads Around the Idea of Wrapping.

You already used that one!

As you may have figured out by now, I don’t cover the big problems. I cover the things that mean a lot. Aka, the little things, things like gift wrapping.

Look It Up, Bookworm

YouTube is full of how-to wrap gift videos. Christina Crawford covers it well in this video. Plus, no ads!

Let Your Kids Do It

Christina just told us kids love to wrap presents.

Let them have all the fun. If you let them use the cutter I mentioned above, then they feel really big.

Make it bad on purpose.

Overwrap. After you wrap it, wrap it again. Give the unwrapper layers to unravel. I promise it’s not the slightest bit annoying to anyone.

Except everyone.

Mix in several different types and colors of paper. It’s like Wonderland style. Used poorly cut paper. Piece different patterns and colors and haphazardly as you can.

Like this one:

Mixed papers

The receiver will be wrapped around your finger.

Check out this wrapping job my nephew did for me last year. Yes, those are zip ties.


I still owe my dad a pair of wire cutters.

Time to Wrap It Up

I should have my knuckles rapped for this one.

I hope that you, like me, grow to enjoy and love wrapping gifts. My daughter loves wrapping gifts with me. We pick some to (try to) wrap well and some to wrap silly style.

Full disclosure!

I’ve been so busy lately that I didn’t have blog posts queued up past last week, so I worked on this one Sunday night.


Totally last minute.

The cool thing about blogs is that you can finish without finishing. So that’s kinda what I’ve done here. Hence, the abrupt endi

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