A Holiday Guide To Eco-friendly Gift Wrapping
A Holiday Guide To Eco-friendly Gift Wrapping
Gift wrapping (i.e., wrapping paper) is a big business during the holidays. Billions of US dollars are spent on wrapping paper every single year, according to Earth911, equating to 4.6 million pounds of holiday wrapping produced annually. These numbers result in a considerable landfill problem for the US and the majority of western countries who participate in end-of-year holiday gifting.
The Problem With Regular Wrapping Paper
Unfortunately, most wrapping paper is contaminated with toxic materials making it non-recyclable, meaning that half of the wrapping paper sold each year ends up in landfills. If your wrapping paper is shiny, laminated, metallic, glitter-based, dyed, or textured, it’s probably not recyclable.
Traditional gift wrapping has become a very serious waste problem. Still, there are change-makers out there addressing this issue for the upcoming holiday season and other celebrations and occasions throughout the year.
We’ve put together a holiday guide to eco-friendly gift wrapping ideas so you can start your sustainable gift-giving with businesses and brands working to prevent waste and landfill overflows --while still prioritizing stylish and festive gifting!
Wrappily is a US-based company that uses neighborhood newspaper presses to make fresh, fun eco-friendly patterns for all occasions. Just “recycle or compost when the party is over.” Printed on 100% recyclable and compostable newsprint, Wrappily uses “renewable newsprint” in response to the millions of pounds of trash generated by wrapping paper every year.
The great part about printing on newsprint is that it can be recycled up to seven times! Not to mention, printing on newsprint requires less energy and often uses soy-based inks.
Triumph Plant Wrap
Give “the gift wrap that grows and blooms.” Triumph Plant Company makes a simple but beautiful gift wrapping paper with wildflower seeds integrated into each 24x36 inch sheet. Once you or your loved one unwraps your gift, you can plant your paper in soil, water regularly, and look for corn poppies, coreopsises, black-eyed Susans, and baby snapdragons to sprout and grow in your garden.
Wrapeez is an eco-friendly and reusable “easy stretch fabric gift wrap that’s designed to create traditionally wrapped gifts without the fuss.” With their patented eco-friendly gift wrap, you can purchase a design for any occasion. All you have to do is stretch it over your gift until covered! It’s really as easy as that. They even have festive patterned sets making them an excellent choice for the upcoming holiday season!
This reusable and low-waste Furoshiki gift wrap company has made it their mission to “eliminate the waste created by gifting and support real artists.” Not only are furoshiki gift wraps the perfect alternative to wrapping paper, but they’re infused with beautiful artistry from independent artists who get a cut of every sale of their own product.
Wrappr wants to be the “gift that continues to be passed on and reused.” In every order, they include a gift tag designed to be reused for future gifts. They even ship using 100% recycled and fully biodegradable materials.
Other Fun Gift Wrapping Ideas
DIY Furoshiki Reusable Fabric Gift Wraps
If you want to make your own Japanese gift wrapping, all you need is a square cut of any fabric to wrap. You can upcycle any fabric you have lying around the house, too! You can watch this simple YouTube video here on how to wrap miscellaneous gifts.
Organic Tea Towel Wrap
Just wrap your present in a tea towel, secure it with a nice piece of ribbon or any handy string, and voila! A dual-purpose gift for your secret Santa.
If you are gifting something small, just wrap it in beeswax paper! The giftee can reuse it for their kitchen or rewrap a future present in it. Like using an organic tea towel or furoshiki, it’s double gifting without using any wrapping paper!
You can DIY beeswax paper at home, or you can support some great beeswax paper companies:
If you have newspapers lying around, just use that as wrapping paper. Newspaper can be recycled, and it uses less energy to print than regular wrapping paper. Not to mention, with a bit of twine and some pine leaves fresh off the tree, you can jazz up the look of your newspaper gift wrapping in no time!
Locally Made Wrapping Paper
Etsy has a massive selection of green recycled wrapping paper, linen furoshiki, eco-friendly tape, fabric gift bags, recyclable tissue paper, and so much more. You can filter for makers closer to you to make it more local-friendly. You really can’t go wrong here, and some of the holiday paper is super cute!
At the end of the day, there are so many great options for wrapping your holiday presents and gifts without using toxic, wasteful, and environmentally UNfriendly gift wrapping. The guide above should get your wrapping season off to a great start.
Hopefully, this post will encourage you to take your eco-friendly wrapping even further when non-holiday gift-giving occasions come up, including birthdays, anniversaries, baby showers, bridal showers, and more!
If you want your gifts to match the wrapping--we have a post on how to shop for sustainable gifts (and what to look for) right here!