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Sustainable Christmas Wrapping Ideas Everyone Will Love

Finding festive Christmas wrapping paper that can also be recycled can be an extremely difficult task. But glossy, glittery, shiny, metallic and even laminated paper cannot be disposed of sustainably and trying to do so could end up contaminating a perfectly good batch of recyclable materials. 

Avoid sending more waste to landfill by adopting some of these sustainable Christmas wrapping practices. From finding the beauty in brown paper to reusing old books, you’ll be able to present the most festive looking gifts to your friends and family this Christmas and all whilst reducing both your carbon footprint and your monetary outgoings. 


Reusable gift bags

Finding eco-friendly gift bags is far easier than you might otherwise have thought. You don’t have to grab laminated ones off the supermarket shelves. Instead, find fabric bags and write your own messages on them or stencil on your own designs. You might even have some gift bags left over from last Christmas that you could reuse, as do many people. 

Fabric tote bags, for example, can be reused time and time again, making it the gift that keeps on giving. Not only is this good for your friends and/or family as they won’t have to spend money on a new bag for themselves, but it’s also great for the environment as these particular bags can be used and reused countless times. Once it wears out, it can then be recycled as rags, reducing your carbon footprint even further.



Newspaper wrapping

In this digital age, more people than ever before are opting to read the news online, which is beneficial for the environment. But there will be some people who continue to read the news the conventional way – using a newspaper. If you don’t have a pile of old newspapers lying around, chances are your friends or family will and they’ll likely be more than happy for you to take them off their hands.

Use this newspaper as a clever and innovative wrapping material for your Christmas presents this year. You can make the newspaper look as festive as possible by tying it with twine and topping them off with natural decorations, such as pine cones or dried out slices of orange.  


Cardboard gift boxes

If you have any cardboard boxes floating around your home that you haven’t managed to find a use for, collect them and use them to put your Christmas presents in. Once you’ve filled them, close them up and decorate them with glitter pens or, as previously mentioned, naturally-sourced present toppers. There also won’t be any need for tape or scissors, so your children will be able to get involved too, if you have any.



Glass jars & containers

Glass jars are cheap to come by and chances are, you might have a few empty ones in your kitchen cupboards that you haven’t found a purpose for yet. Use these glass containers to present your family and friends with gifts this Christmas. You’ll be able to decorate them with twine or old pieces of fabric instead of shop-bought ribbon. 

You could even tie some cinnamon sticks, eucalyptus leaves or candy canes to the edges to add that extra festive touch. If you’re struggling for gift ideas, you can make some jam or chutney at home and scoop the contents out into one of the jars and gift them to friends and family. Homemade presents are extremely thoughtful and are themselves eco-friendly.



Use old fabrics

If you have any old pieces of clothing or bedding lying around that have interesting patterns on them then use these fabrics to wrap your Christmas presents this year. Not only will this help to reduce your carbon footprint, as you’ll be generating less waste, but it’ll also save you money as you won’t have to go out and buy wrapping paper, tags, ribbons or disposable present toppers.

It’ll give the gift itself a unique, stand-out look, meaning your presents will be a cut above the rest and therefore more memorable. It might even inspire others to do the same in the future, whether it be to wrap birthday presents throughout the year or to wrap future Christmas presents.

If the recipient doesn’t want to keep the fabric or has no further use for it, ask them for the fabric back so you can repurpose it or tell them that it can be responsibly disposed of using waste management companies, such as Willshee’s, or they can simply donate it to their local charity shop as they often take rags for a third party to make use of.



Source brown recycled paper

Plain brown paper can be extremely effective when it comes to Christmas wrapping. It provides a blank canvas for you to let your creative juices flow. You’ll be able to write your own messages on the present itself with glitter pens or metallic markers. Buy reusable stencils and paint some patterns over the top of it. 

You could tie the package with twine or thin pieces of fabric to create a makeshift ribbon instead of buying disposable plastic-based materials. Source some natural present toppers for that special finishing touch. Try tying cinnamon sticks, pine cones or even dried out slices of orange and apple to the top of your presents to be extra sustainable this Christmas.

Brown paper is also exceptionally easy to come by. You’ll be able to buy it from all arts and crafts shops, stationery stores, department stores and even your local Post Office. The other good thing about brown paper is that it can be easily recycled after use, it’s biodegradable and it’s also very reasonably priced. In some stores, you can get 6 metres of brown parcel paper for as little as £1. Do some research and find the cheapest price for the most amount of product to make it as cost-effective as possible.

If you buy too much this Christmas, don’t worry! You’ll be able to make full use of it throughout the rest of the year by wrapping birthday, Valentine’s or Anniversary gifts in it. If not, then save it for use next Christmas, then you won’t have to worry about buying wrapping paper that year.



Utilise the pages of old or unwanted books

If you have any books that you no longer want or if anyone else has any, then you can rip the pages out and wrap your presents in them. Even if it takes a few pages to wrap one present, you’re still repurposing material that would have otherwise been thrown away. There are hundreds of online tutorials that will show you how to wrap gifts in book pages, but they’ll also show you how to decorate those presents in a bid to make it look as aesthetically-pleasing as possible, ready for being placed under the tree.


Willshee’s are experts in the waste management industry, holding a wealth of knowledge and experience that allows us to provide you with the most effective waste management services out there. Whether you need a domestic skip to help you clear your house out before Christmas or have numerous materials waiting to be recycled, our team of specialists will always be on hand to help. For more information about our waste management services, including skip hire, hazardous waste removal or even trade waste disposal, get in touch with a member of our team today – we’re always happy to hear from you.


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