I love wrapping gifts and taking the time to make each one special. This isn't always easy during the holidays when we have so many things we'd like to accomplish. So, my first secret to gift wrapping is:
Number 1 - Wrap each gift on the day you purchase it, or when it arrives in the mail. This gives you more time to enjoy wrapping each individual gift, rather than waiting to wrap them all at once. Most importantly, keep a list of the gifts that you have wrapped for each person so you won't forget what you've already purchased.
Of course, to wrap as you go, it helps to have everything on hand which brings me to my second tip.
Number 2 - You don't need to spend a lot to be creative. This year, I'm wrapping everything in a light weight kraft paper I purchased at IKEA for .99 cents a roll. Strips of decorative paper, and pages from old text and music books are great for adding an extra layer. Having neutral tags and ribbon on hand will ensure that everything compliments your packaging. I love using jute twine and seam binding. (You can purchase just about any color of seam binding for only $7.95 for 100 yards, and use it all year long!)
Number 3 - Add sprigs of fresh boxwood or evergreens to your packages. The greens will dry and still look lovely on your gifts. However, if you're wrapping something more than a month in advance, I would wait and tie the greens on closer to Christmas.
Number 4 - I love having the right tools and supplies for every job, even when it comes to wrapping gifts. They help make your packaging even more beautiful and, they make your job so much easier. Here are a few of my favorites that I always have on hand.
Picture No. 2 - Lots of jute twine and charming tags.
Picture No. 3 - Left to right: A good quality 1/8" hole punch for attaching ribbon and tags (not your standard 1/4"). ~~ A bone folder for making really crisp corners when wrapping. ~~ Scissors that you use only for cutting paper. I love this Fiskars pair which have a spring action mechanism - easy on the hands. ~~ A tape dispenser. Such a simple thing, but I would never want to be without one now. Also, use double-sided permanent tape and secure your tape to the inside edges - much better than invisible tape which still shows.
Picture No. 4 - A nice set of fine point art markers for writing tags or gift cards. Sweet girl gave me this set by Stabilo. Great quality and they come in a case that can stand up. Love them! I hope each of you find a set in your stocking on Christmas morning!