In my last post, I challenged you to “think outside the box” and get your creative juices flowing. The task was to go thrifting (garage sale, thrift store or dollar store) and to give yourself the time to browse thinking: WRAP, RIBBON, EMBELLISH! The key to the experience was to not actually look for any of the above, but rather ponder what you see and imagine the items replacing what we traditionally think of as wrapping paper, ribbon and typical store bought bows. I hope you had some time to test this out over the weekend, but if not, no worries the challenge is not timed and I would love to hear your ideas, as you make your own discoveries!
This brings me to my own dollar store find….skipping ropes! Oh yeah…they make a perfect replacement for…you guessed it RIBBON! There are many styles, colours, weights and designs and admittedly some work better than others. There are basically two versions, the single rope with handles of some sort (which can in itself create interest) and the endless loop Chinese skipping rope. I bought both types. Over the next few posts/videos, you will see how I incorporated skipping ropes into my finished gift wrapping look. Skipping ropes would make a great accessory when gift wrapping for a child, as it can actually become part of the gift! They could also be a great addition to any summer themed gift idea, but would also work for any generic gift giving occasion.
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Here is the final episode in my 3 part tutorial on how to create impact when you are wrapping multiple gifts. Check out this video from BOWhemian WRAPsody to see yet another version of this concept.
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I have oodles of gift bags, but mostly because I have received many gifts in them over the years. Gift bags are easy to store and when kept in great condition can be reused for future gifts. Having said that, I much prefer to do traditional gift wrapping because I always feel limited in my creativity when using a gift bag. Gift bags are ideal for those awkward gifts that are hard to wrap because of their size or shape and another benefit is obviously the ease with which you can have your gift bagged and ready to go with minimal time and/or effort.
I actually love this particular bag because it’s made of two-toned burlap and has bamboo handles. I love the natural look and texture of the materials. So, in keeping with the natural theme, I simply added a raffia bow and a tiny artificial flower slip to finish off the look. I love the imperfections of raffia and how it gives the gift a rustic, almost messy look. Raffia is another one of my “go to” materials. It looks great when going for a natural look, but can also be combined with other elements to create interest. Burlap and Raffia are simply a match made in heaven!
See how this was pulled together in my latest video! This look was created in less than 2 minutes….just plug in your glue gun before you start! Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to both my blog and new Youtube Channel: BOWhemian WRAPsody.
Do you ever have to wrap multiple gifts for the same person? I love it when that happens! I find that carefully choosing coordinating papers is one of the most dramatic ways to create impact when wrapping more than one gift for the same person. In fact, the embellishments can be minimized, as the paper itself can become the visual appeal of the gift. Don’t take the easy way out and settle for wrapping all of the gifts from the same roll of paper. Yes, they will look like they belong together, but trust me, you’ll be missing out on a great opportunity to play with colour and pattern. One thing to keep in mind when you are combining patterns is to try and incorporate solids as well. I always keep rolls of black and white on hand. Both colours are super versatile and can often be used to pull a set of gifts together by adding a simple ribbon in the dominant colour.
I recently did a 3 video series on my Youtube channel BOWhemian WRAPsody that highlights how to pack power in the presentation of multiple gifts, by simply using papers that vary slightly in pattern.
To learn how to create this look, check out my first video tutorial in this series!
Whether you scrapbook or not, there is no denying the endless possibilities when it comes to the patterns, colours and designs available. I often find myself looking at gorgeous paper and fabrics in much the same way….often finding some designs just too beautiful not to have. When it comes to wrapping small gifts…why not expand your thinking and choose from the vast array of papers available, so much to choose from as opposed to the limited stock of wrapping paper available in most stores and/or the extravegant prices you find in higher end specialty stores. Of course, using scrapbooking paper does limit use to smaller gifts or requires piecing together two sheets. However, it is often available for as low as 50 cents for individual sheets and you don’t have to worry about storing the leftover paper!
Important things to consider if you want to use scrapbooking paper to wrap a gift:
The size of the gift. Scrapbooking paper is available in 12″ X 12″ sheets (as well as standard 8 1/2 x 11 or smaller), so it will only work for small gifts or you can decide to tape two sheets together on the reverse side enabling you to play with a piece that is approximately 12″ X 23″ (with overlap for taping). If you aren’t sure if it will work and you don’t have any at home to test the size, just make a template from newspaper or plain brown packaging paper. In fact, you could keep it as a template for future gifts as well.
Make sure you are purchasing a light weight paper. Some paper is definitely heavy stock and will not be very pliable for wrapping.
If you need to purchase the paper, you may want to look and see what you already have on hand for ribbon and embellishments. Instead of purchasing more, see if you can coordinate your paper purchase with items you already have at home. I think it’s safe to say that most people that are creative and/or crafty…have a stash of stuff they “just had to buy”. Think of gift wrapping as a way to use up some of those crafting items ….perhaps not how you initially intended, but this way you get to purge and be creative at the same time! Make sure to take the embellishments you have with you to the store ~ DO NOT TRUST THAT YOU CAN MATCH THE COLOUR FROM MEMORY….believe me it is next to impossible. You think you can until you arrive at the store looking for teal and realize that even teal has a zillion different tones/shades…yikes!
Check out my latest video from my channel: BOWhemian WRAPsody to see how you can wrap with scrap!
I always keep basic brown packaging paper on hand. It’s actually one of my “go to” gift wrapping papers. It is cheap, readily available at any dollar store and oh so versatile! You can dress up the paper (using stamps, paint or sharpies) or leave it plain and just add embellishments. The paper is such a neutral colour that you can literally combine it with almost any colour to create a great look.
For this gift, I simply added a unique “ribbon” I found at the dollar store. It combines a rustic type of cord with tiny leaves to create an organic look. I then cut a few slips from flowers I had in the house. It looks awesome with a simple slip of greenery or combined with a simple flower such as a daisy. Love this look and so simple to pull together! Look for more great ways to use basic brown paper in up coming videos!