Eco Friendly Gift Wrap Ideas

Do you feel guilty using rolls and rolls of wrapping paper every year? Not only do I hate to waste paper, but it’s expensive to wrap gifts.

My sister is the ultimate wrapping paper collector.  She has so much incredible wrapping paper, that it’s too good for packages.  I on the other hand have the opposite problem.  I have almost no wrapping paper and I feel bad when I buy it.  

Here are my top five eco-friendly gift wrap ideas. See if one of these will work for you this holiday season.

1.) Wrap Presents with cartoons

Cartoons now only make inexpensive wrapping paper, but they also provide entertainment. The downside of this option is that these days the funnies are pretty slim in most local newspapers. You may have to collect newspapers for a while to get enough.

If you need more, you can buy recycled papers for just a few cents at used bookstores like half priced books.

2.) Wrap gifts with Colorful Shopping Bags

My favorite shopping bags to use for gift wrap are Trader Joe’s bags. They always have really cute holiday themed bags. The key is to find someplace that still uses paper bags. The Gap and Old Navy also have cute holiday bags. Often the gifts you buy come in paper bags that can be cut to fit your gift.

If you don’t have a Trader Joe in your area many grocery stores use holiday bags that are different. It is definitely not the fastest way to wrap gifts and can be hard for large gifts, but it’s worth it.

3. recycle wrapping paper

Have you ever received a gift where you thought, I love this wrapping paper? Of course you have. If you love it, unwrap your package carefully and save the paper for another time. The gift giver will probably feel twice as happy since you liked the paper enough to keep it.

4. Wrap gifts with Maps

If you have old maps that are sitting in a drawer (because lets face it no one uses maps any more), they can make great gift wrap.

5. Wrap Gifts With Book and Magazine Pages

If you have a stack of books that you are getting ready to donate, pull one out and use the pages as gift wrap. Or a stack of magazines. You may think it is sacrilegious to rip apart a book, but if you are planning to recycle it anyway it’s better than buying wrapping paper.

recycled magazine cover for wrapping paper

It’s hard to wrap large gifts with book pages, but smaller ones are so cute wrapped up in a book page. If you can’t bear to use one of your own books you can go to a used bookstore and buy a book for $0.25, if it’s one where there are lots of copies on the shelf it will probably be destroyed eventually anyway.

Click here to see 13 more eco-friendly ways to wrap presents.

Eco Friendly Ribbon Ideas

The best way to be kind to the environment is to recycle your ribbon every year. My mom has done this for years because she uses fabric ribbon. Every year she just collects all the ribbons and bags them up for next year. You can also do this with yarn.

I also like to use raffia, which is a natural fiber and recyclable. It’s also inexpensive. Here’s a cute gift wrap idea using paper leaves you cut out.

Save The Environment This Christmas

Before you spend a lot of money on wrapping paper and ribbon this year see if you can make one of these recycled options work for you. You’ll be doing something for the planet and your loved ones.

Eco-friendly gift wrap ideas

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  1. I have a post on this too, as I love being eco friendly. You’re tips are awesome and I used to love getting things wrapped with the “funnies” or comics. Look at how smart people were way back when (not to date us lol). Thanks for sharing!

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