As you’ve read, I’m purging my gift and wrapping closet. I wanted to take some pics to share with you, and I found out I had quite a lot to say on the topic. So here it goes, the first of three posts about your gift stash. I also would love to hear, what do you do at your house to keep all these things organized? Any tips would be great.
As a sidenote, a rather shameless one, I had Brent add a “share this” button to the bottom of my posts. (This he did after fixing our well system and folding a giant heap of clothes. He’s great like that.) So if you like something I write here, please click the button so your friends see it or maybe your mother or someone else important.
Now on to gift wrap.
When it comes to wrapping gifts, I’ve learned to make one assumption: I will have five minutes at the most to gift wrap. That includes cleanup time. I’m learning this lesson a little better each year. And I’ve managed to simplify my wrapping by doing a few things. I thought you might like to hear them, so here they are.
My 7 tips to organize and simplify gift wrap:
1. Print and punch tags ahead: As a new year starts out fresh, I print and punch a stack of labels and tags in advance. It’s so much more fun to go to the closet and pick out a pretty tag than to wrestle with the printer minutes before having to walk out the door with your gift in hand. ???And punching tags from scraps is sort of a fun artsy activity.
2. Pick a color scheme: It’s like planning a wedding. Doesn’t that sound fun? I realized one day that I didn’t need to be prepared with wrap, ribbon, and tags for every possible color scheme. I could just stick with one or two. And it could be whatever color scheme my whim dictated. So I choose a color scheme a year. This year I’m leaning towards with red, turquoise, and blue. But I f ind it’s also great to keep versatile staples around, like a roll of brown kraft paper and a stack of glassine envelopes.
3. Collect scraps: If you don’t already collect scraps, just make a place to keep them and they will start showing up. You’ll be amazed how they’ll collect and you’ll find uses for bits of ribbon, old maps, a piece of graph paper, last year’s Christmas cards. Make sure to get yourself a big circle punch or tag-shaped punch and you’ll be able to make a tag out of almost anything.
4. Wrap green: Reuse household containers or wrap a gift in another gift (thanks, Carly!) like a tea towel or pair of socks. Or go with just a ribbon and a tag, like this lovely lady did. A pretty tag can go a long way, don’t you agree?
5. Make the container fit the need: Pick out an appropriate sized box or container for everything you like to wrap with. This way you know when the box is full to stop buying that supply, so you don’t end up with 15 different packages of crinkle wrap and every single gift bag you’ve every received in your life. Plus when the box is getting empty you know it’s time to restock. The same rule works for gifts. My baby gifts, for example, go in a sweater box. Just the right size to keep a few at a time.
6. Be real about your space: I’m done buying rolls of wrapping that measure up to my chest. Seriously. I have a small house, and plenty of other things to store. I trust that if I have something that big to wrap, my ingenuity will kick in and I’ll find a way.
7. Organization doesn’t have to cost you: Save your money for the wrapping, you don’t have to spend it all on organizing. Look around the house for containers you already have that you can use to turn your unwieldy mess into a tame, happy, wrapping corner. A few of my favorites below.
I’m telling you, these containers made from milk cartons are the best for organizing everything. They’re perfect for saving scraps. I’ve gotten so I can transform a milk carton into one of these babies in under two minutes with my trusty craft knife.
Pizza boxes turned inside out are another favorite of mine (original idea from here, I also used this idea here). I love to use tissue paper for wrapping, and I find pizza boxes protect it nicely. Sweater boxes are also great for a stash of gifts.
These boxes once held salad. Now they’re keeping my yarn from becoming a tangled heap. I’m planning to punch a hole in the side to pull the yarn through.
Cereal boxes are the best for filing gift bags by size or color or theme.
I’ve found that hair pins work great for keeping gift box tops paired with their bottoms.
One final piece. I cut a section off a hanging toy organizer to stuff full of my crinkle wrap. As you can see, it’s time for me to stop buying crinkle wrap for a while.
I have one final trick for storing ribbon, and I’ll be sure to share in a day or two once I can get a tutorial together. Also coming soon: all my favorite gift wrap supplies. It really is a lot of fun taking pictures of ribbons, labels, and paper. See you soon.
(I just noticed the “share this” button even has an option for sharing on Kirtsy. Wahoo. If you’re thinking of adding this friendly button to your blog, it took only a few minutes.)