Monday, April 14, 2014

Getting Creative with Wrapping Paper

I spotted this sassy wrapping paper in the dollar bins at Michael's awhile back, and despite my vow to never buy paper again until what I already have runs low...well...you know how this ends.


As I was in line waiting to check out, a lovely older woman decided to strike up a conversation. Those of you who know me in real life know that I will talk to anyone. It is a great blessing/horrible curse, depending on where we are and which child you ask. The only exception to this tendency is when I am in a craft store line that could not possibly move any slower, ladies are asking to run to the cars to get their coupons while the cashier "holds on real quick" (!!), and for the love of Benedict Cumberbatch, ARE THERE NO OTHER EMPLOYEES THAT CAN WORK A REGISTER?

Suffice it to say, waiting to check out makes me cranky and mumble back one syllable sounds and grunts instead answers to anyone brave enough to start asking me questions, even if that person has the sweetest of intentions, like the darling great grandmother who stood behind me on this particular day. But something this woman said, clearly oblivious to my non-verbal cues that I was clearly sending off in warning, got me thinking.

"That sure is cute wrapping, but I just can't buy things like that. It would be so hard to use."

WHAT??

Granted, it has flowers, so your 13 year old nephew may not appreciate it's charm (even though cute boy presents are awesome), but other than that, just because it has a busy pattern doesn't mean you can't switch up the way you use it.

And thus a blog post is born. Thank you, darling great grandmother at Michael's. Say hello to your son the pilot for me.



 Eight ways to get creative (with the same paper):


#1. Go the no-brainer route with plain ribbon and a tag

This burlap-y goodness was picked up at Costco during the holidays because I knew full well it could be used all year long. Just because the colors are loud in the paper doesn't mean that you have to keep up the theme. Neutral ribbon (scraps of torn fabric would work too) does wonders to defunkify the whole feel.




 #2. Layer it up with some recycled bags

You know how deep my love is for trashy wrapping. This Braums paper bag is the perfect compliment, without matching too exactly. A tissue paper "flower" is made just like the big ones you hang from the ceiling, but instead of using 8 pieces of tissue paper, cut one sheet into eight equal pieces, stack, fold, wire, and twist onto ribbon.




#3. Put your mail to work

This topper is brought to you by a magazine found shoved below a bed in the boys room. Yes, it's from 2007. Judge me.


{Look at those captions: "Dare to Explore", "Flip Me Over". BEGGING to be used on a bridal shower box.}



#4. Stack on a upcycled box

Cereal boxes are notorious for having brightly colored packaging, which is magically delicious paired with a floral foundation (recycled pillow box tutorial here).




#5. Add on MORE pattern

Because sometimes the more friends you invite the better. A strip of leftover scrapbook paper joins the party and makes a cute little belt,




as does a remnant of Target dollar spot paper. Also pom poms make everything festive. But you already knew that.




#6. Make a medallion

Hey look - there's the rest of that book inspired wrapping paper. In this case, the original wrapping paper is transformed into a rosette (tutorial here), and finished off with a faux bottle cap from the old 2001 scrapbooking embellishment box.




Or you could just pull out the Hello Kitty version that was lost in the back of the craft cabinet, which means it took longer to find the scissors than to wrap this thing from start to finish.




#7. Pop on a pinwheel

This one certainly isn't fancy, but a perfect example that you don't need "scrapbook" paper or cardstock to make a topper. This is a square of construction paper from the kids school stuff. Yet another bottle cap covers up the hot glue, and makes you feel less guilty about hoarding them in the first place. Easy pinwheel tutorial here.




#8. The infamous monogram



Print it out using these directions, or be lazy and trace it on a plain piece of paper right off your computer screen to use as a pattern.


Happy gifting.

23 comments:

  1. Your ideas rock! Always look forward to your funny and super cute posts!

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  2. You always have the best ideas and this post is no exception. I hope great grandma sees this. She will never doubt again.
    I won't even get into what I think of those craft store people. I don't want to use that kind of naughty language on your blog.
    Thanks for another great post.

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    1. HAHA! I doubt she's the blog reading type, but I guess you never know, right? If she does, she knows that I give her FULL credit for even talking about some silly $1 paper in the first place.

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  3. Love this post. I laughed out loud at the "for the love of Benedict Cumberbatch" (whom I adore), but also because it is so true. The lines at Michael's are dreadfully slow and think it's only because they feed our addiction that they stay in business! Really, do think some of the women who shop there don't get out much as it seems they don't know how to shop- can't scan their cards, can't find their flipping' coupons, can't tell that the date on the one they are clutching expired 3 weeks ago....OK, I'll stop now. And do love the creative use of paper, of course.

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    1. When I was looking for a job, people kept suggesting working at a craft store and I would always respond with a very quick "Never." I could not deal with the same kind of customer all day long. Every time I have to stand in line, I have no choice but to observe those ladies around me. And then I get terrified that MAYBE I'M JUST LIKE THEM AND DON'T EVEN KNOW IT.

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  4. Is there a roll of wrapping paper you couldn't do something fabulous with?! Seriously...what were you thinking? ;)

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    1. I can't do anything fabulous with ANY roll, but I *can* use it up so that I have an excuse to buy more... :)

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  5. Brilliant! That paper is retro baby!

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    1. "My name is Austin Powers. Danger is my middle name."

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  6. I always love your wrapping posts. They give me such inspiration and hope, even though my finished products are truly sad compared to yours. I did do the loopy bow thing for a bridal shower and everyone was remarking on how beautiful my package was, so I have you to thank for that! When I was a kid, my mother used to shop at Rike's (a now defunct department store) for wedding presents, etc. and always took them back to the wrapping department where the wonderful ladies performed wrapping magic. I don't think department stores even do that anymore, at least not the ones around here. I wanted to have that job when I grew up. I thought it would be the most amazing job ever. I think they should bring back wrapping departments and make you the world wrapping manager. ;-)

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    1. Except I can't do elegant. I mean, I guess I've never really tried (how would anyone know it's from me?), but if someone was actually paying I would feel like it had to be perfect. Which my wrap jobs never are ;)

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  7. Let's be honest, I will never do any of this, but I sure do love it all.

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    1. If we're being truly honest, there is nothing here that a small child couldn't replicate. Since you've got plenty of those, you should never have to wrap anything! :)

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  8. You always have such fun wrapping ideas. I don't use them because I'm lazy and just use the curling ribbon and paper that we have. But maybe someday I will. Regardless, I love seeing your creative ideas.

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    1. No pressure, Angela. This is a judgement free zone!

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  9. You are so creative!!! I love all of these!

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    1. Thanks, Tania. It's less about creativity, and more about using random scraps that need to be gotten rid of :)

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  10. Hi Rebecca, just stopping by to say how delightful your blog is. Thanks so much for sharing. I have recently found your blog and am now following you, and will visit often. Please stop by my blog and perhaps you would like to follow me also. Have a wonderful day. Hugs, Chris
    http://chelencarter-retiredandlovingit.blogspot.ca/

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  11. Please, post again! :) I keep checking, and your words aren't here! :(

    Hope you are well!

    Carrie.

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    1. :'( <----- that's me. Crying. Filled with guilt. I'll be back soon - promise!!

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