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10 quick, inexpensive & eco-friendly gift wrapping ideas

Gift wrapping can be expensive! However, I'm here to help you save money, time and the planet this holiday season! Look no further than your recycling bin to give new life to used packaging with these crafty gift-wrapping ideas. It's also a good opportunity to teach your kids about reusing and recycling. First, consider investing in an inexpensive paper shredder to shred old magazine pages for decorative filler. Next, check out these ideas to reduce, reuse, recycle and wow!

1. Souper surprise

Hide a large or bulky unwrapped gift and write a clue about where it's hidden. Then slip the clue into this soup can vessel and send your recipient on a mini scavenger hunt. Choose a pop-tab soup can of your choice. Turn the can upside down and open it from the bottom, but leave about one inch uncut. Dump the soup out to eat or save for later, then clean and dry the can. Insert the printed clue and seal the lid shut with tape. Add a homemade bow and you're done! Now sit back in amusement as your eager recipient goes to pop open the prank can of "soup".

2. Barrel-o-fun

Start with a bulk empty plastic snack container (such as pretzels - we go through one of these every day at House Party) and attach a "Barrel-o-fun" sign to it. Insert items that complement the theme, such as a Jelly Belly BeanBoozled game, scratch off lottery ticket, mix CD, candy, etc.

3. Beauty and the box

Save tissue boxes with designs (cube or rectangle), then drop your gift in and top it off with old paper shreds so they flare out of the box. Optional: Decorate the bottom border of the box with ribbon or other embellishment.

4. Jolly and juicy

Take an empty juice container and remove the labels. It may leave a sticky residue, which you can sprinkle with glitter. Strategically drop in paper shreds and the gift so that it's hidden, then simply tape or tie on a tag.

5. Candy tube

Save used paper towel and toilet paper rolls to make these easy candy tubes for stocking stuffers. These would also make great guest favors for your next House Party!

6. Clearly contained

Take a clear produce container and insert colorful magazine shreds and the gift. Wrap a bow around it (bunched up paper shreds attached to red wire ribbon) and voila!

7. Boxed boxes

You may have seen pranksters who wrap a gift in a small box then put that in a larger wrapped box and wrap that and continue this pattern, similar to the concept of Russian nested dolls. Why not mimic this and fool your recipient? Pull various sizes of clean, used boxes from the recycling and stick a box inside a box inside a box...no wrapping required. Feel free to add a festive bow though.

8. Old news, new gift

Start with a used box, such as an old House Party Party Pack, then wrap it with newspaper. Take a handful of shreds and bunch it up, then tie a ribbon around it and tie it to another ribbon wrapped around the belly of the box. The juxtaposition of the colorful magazine shreds against the black and white newspaper creates a cool effect.

9. Bag it

Cut the bottom off a grocery store brown paper bag and wrap your gift. Top it off with a homemade bow made from magazines for a pop of color. Other decorative bags such as red polka dotted bags or colored plastic bags also work well.

10. DIY gift tags

String ribbon through these unconventional name tags and write to/from on them for a special twist.

1. Grab an individually packaged tea bag and punch a hole through the top 2. Create a 3-D snowflake out of old paper 3. Save colorful tags from packaging or new clothes and cut into your desired shape 4. Use spare buttons - get creative and glue or sew them into shapes (such as a 3-button snowman) and decorate with marker

Happy Holidays! What's your favorite creative way to wrap gifts?

 

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