Homemade Christmas Wrapping Paper: Part One.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Ok. Its getting down to the end of the wire here. The holidays are two feet away, and I've still got a to-do list at least ten miles long. We're almost completely finished with our holiday shopping (for the kids at least, we haven't even thought about what to get for each other), since we did most of it yard sale style. The more that the various My Little Pony items stack up in our bedroom the closet, the more I realize that things need to get wrapped. I don't know what I'll do if little Miss nosy pants barges into the closet without my knowing it, and gets into everything.

That right there, is only a portion of the brown paper bags that we've collected over the past couple of months from the Commissary. We do have a bunch of the canvas reusable bags, but we always forget them. So much so, that I have no idea where they are, not a single one of the twenty of them. When we get to the checkout and the bagger asks whether we want paper or plastic, I always answer back "paper", because I know I'll be able to recycle it one way or another. I can't say the same for plastic bags, which are scattered around underneath bathroom sinks, up on top of shelves, and sometimes, more often than not, find themselves going straight into the garbage (I never claimed to be perfect).

This year, I'm making our wrapping paper from scratch. I've been planning on it for awhile now, thinking about all of the different kinds of designs that I'll try and put together, and even if it turns out looking horrible, which it very well might, there just isn't any option for backing down.

I want the gifts under our tree to look beautiful.

I don't think I made it to any of the after Christmas sales last year (I'm one of the crazies that gets to the store at 8am to get 50% off on ribbons and bows), because I gave birth to Charlie on the 26th (can you believe hes going to be one?). I think I maybe have one backup roll of wrapping paper out in the garage, and some leftovers from last year, but really- I'm a packaging snob, and I want them all to match.

Today while the babies napped, I sat down on the couch (rare, these days) with a pair of blue handled scissors, and a giant stack of bags. Gotta start somewhere, right? The first step, is just finding the time to cut the bags up. A little bit here, a little bit there, I just do a couple while I'm watching a show I like (today it was Rachael Ray), and before I know it they'll all be ready to be ironed. Originally I was going to wait and try and get it all done in one day, but as I'm learning (through my various un slashed to do lists lying around the house), I'm only one person, and I need to pace myself.

I've wrapped gifts in brown paper bag material before, but I've never made actual gift wrap from it. I've never sat down and flattened out the creases left from the previously made folds, or glued the cut out bags together to form larger pieces. I've never got out the ink and stamps and printed designs onto the kraft colored base sheets. And the way that I'm looking at it is, I'd rather have too much, than too little. With all of my family coming down for Christmas this year (my Grandparents in just a month, and my parents the week after that), I have a feeling I'm going to want to be on the "oh that's way too much" side of things, rather than the "this looks good, that's enough" side, falling short and needing to either rush at the last minute to get more made, resort to the backup roll in the garage, or even have to go out and buy some. Its just not happening. If I'm going to do this, I'm going to do it to the best of my abilities.

Obviously, homemade wrapping paper isn't for everybody. Last year, it definitely wasn't for me, I was 10 months pregnant and completely against anything that required me lifting more than my pinky finger. Next year it might not be for me, I might have a stash of beautiful clearance steals in silvers and purples. But this year, I'm on it.

These are going to be the most gorgeous presents that our artificial tree has ever seen.


fookaDESIGNS November 18, 2009 at 7:44 AM  

sounds beautiful....good luck! I'm sure your tree will love it.

Fallon November 18, 2009 at 8:08 AM  

I love over doing Christmas packages! I did make it to the stores early after Christmas so I have the perfect wrapping papers but I will also be making some, because its fun.

Jenny November 18, 2009 at 8:18 AM  

I can't wait to see! You are so talented anyway, so they'll be loverly!

ElegantSnobbery November 18, 2009 at 8:40 AM  

nothing beats brown paper packages tied up with string... those are a few of my favorite things! (sorry, couldn't resist singing that)

Giggly November 18, 2009 at 9:06 AM  

Wonderful! I can't wait to see the beautiful package results. :) I'm sure they will turn out fabulous!

Christina November 18, 2009 at 10:06 AM  

I really look forward to seeing how this project comes along! :)

soul_searching_mama November 18, 2009 at 10:14 AM  

I was thinking of making my own wrapping paper this year, but I'm not sure how that will turn out since I've never done it before. I'm sure yours will turn out a million times more awesome looking! You are very talented. :) I'm excited to see the end result.

joyfully gray November 18, 2009 at 10:58 AM  

I cannot wait to see the final product! How cool.

Nen November 18, 2009 at 11:28 AM  

I am a wrapping paper hoarder (is that even a word?)... I see things on clearance after the season and I just can't help myself! I like the idea of making your own though... I look forward to seeing a completed project!

Hobocamp Crafts November 18, 2009 at 3:03 PM  

it is so funny that you posted this- we too have been saving paper bags for weeks- when we went to Ikea last we wrapped our very fragile ahem food items in their paper- so we'd have extra paper. Great minds think alike ;) and NO I can not even believe that Hazel & Charlie are both going to be 1. Oh Lord!

Lauren November 18, 2009 at 8:11 PM  

Love this! Can't wait to see the results =D.

Naturalearthfarm November 19, 2009 at 5:33 AM  

Thats what I have done for two years - simple and good for the environment.

Betsy November 21, 2009 at 5:07 PM  

I love this idea! I always said I was going to make my own paper too and wrap twigs, branches, and acorns on them with twine instead of buying the flashy glittery paper and bows/ribbons. You may have just inspired me this year.

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