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The holidays are fast approaching and with that comes waste. LOTS of waste. Every gift comes in some kind of package, which is then wrapped in paper, ribbons and bows or tucked in a gift bag surrounded by tissue paper. I know in my house on Christmas morning, it looks like someone set off a crinkly paper bomb in the living room. Most of this paper is not recyclable, so it is destined for the landfill. For this reason, I have researched ways to wrap gifts that are more eco-friendly. We have spent the year trying to reduce our impact, so for this reason, we have decided to take try to have an eco-friendly Christmas. Here are some ideas of alternative ways to wrap gifts.
Using gift wrap made of recycled paper is a great step you can take. You can also use brown paper or newspaper for wrapping. If you are using traditional scotch tape, you have to pick it off before recycling the paper. If you are committed to making your gifting even more eco-friendly, you can tie twine around your wrapped gifts to secure the paper. When browsing Ikea the other day, I came across recyclable brown paper gift bags. They have cool holiday prints and are only $0.39 a piece.
Reuse Old Gift Bags
If you are like me, you have a stash of gift bags in your home that you were used to give someone in your family gifts, but you couldn’t bear to toss them. Reusing them to give gifts at least gives them a second life. If whoever you gift them to reads this post, then maybe they will do the same and give the gift bag an even longer lifespan.
The kids may not like this idea, but I know many adults that love receiving gift baskets. You can fill a gift basket with lots of cool items and the basket is an additional part of the gift. I use baskets to hold toys, cloth diapers, yarn, etc. If you gift me a basket, I will be ecstatic. Skips the plastic film that gift baskets are usually wrapped in and just put a burlap bow on the handle.
Giving the gift of cookies or squares is always appreciated during the holidays. Gifting them in tins is a waste-free way of giving a waste free gift. Cookie tins can be reused to gift other baked good, or to store items in the home. We have used them to store Lego and other small toys.
Here are some suggestions from Invaluable on how to wrap different gifts using cloth wraps.
Reusable Cloth Drawstring Bags
I love using these bags for gifting. They can easily be made if you have a sewing machine using this method. You can also find them online, at stores and thrift shops. My kids love drawstring bags to hold toys and other treasures. I also like to use them when buying bread, buns or fruit at the grocery store.
Reducing waste during the holidays can make a huge impact on the environment. Having access to many gift wrapping alternatives means you can customize the way you give gifts. Hopefully you can implement these eco-tips into your holiday routine.