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Gift Wrapping Dos and Don’ts

flatlay of woman wrapping holiday gifts in brown paper

There’s nothing better than finding and giving the perfect gift to a loved one. Believe it or not, 84% of Americans participate in the festivities. However, what amps up the excitement is when a gift is wrapped up just right. Gift wrapping is an art that takes lots of patience and practice, but luckily, we’re here to help. Read on to learn how to wrap a gift and our list of helpful dos and don’ts to wrap gifts like a pro and wow the giftee.

DO: Create a gift-wrapping station.

A process that requires time, supplies, and space, gift wrapping is best accomplished when there’s a designated area at home to package gifts. This can be a desk, table, or even a spot on a hard floor. With enough space, you can keep all your supplies in one area and perfect the gift-wrapping craft. Supplies to keep on hand include:

  • Wrapping paper
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Gift boxes in various sizes  
  • Ribbon & bows
  • Tissue paper
  • Labels & gift tags
  • Markers & pens

DON’T: Use too much paper.

While you want enough paper to cover what you’re giving out, it’s easy to get carried away and bloat your gift wrapping. Before cutting, roll out plenty of paper for your gift to sit on. Pull the edges tight, covering the top and sides to estimate, then cut as needed to eliminate excess and prevent waste. Remember to recycle what you don’t use!

DO: Put gifts in boxes.

Most people opt to wrap their gifts as-is, putting paper directly onto the presents they’ll be giving away. This can lead to some irregular and awkward shapes. Are you wondering how to wrap hard-to-wrap presents? For a nice, uniform presentation, always use a square or rectangular box.

DON’T: Wrap right-side-up.

mother and child wrapping holiday gifts in front of the tree

If you wrap a box right-side-up, folded edges will show on the top of the package. Instead, put boxes upside down so folds can be hidden on the bottom instead. If you can’t do this with an item, cover up the creased paper with a bow or ribbon.

DO: Get high-quality paper and scissors.

High-quality paper can help prevent tears, and high-quality scissors can help you avoid jagged edges when trimming. Look for structured, premium paper with a gridded pattern and scissors that are especially sharp. A good pair of scissors will act like a knife cutting butter, gliding right through without choppy tears.

DON’T: Wrap items up together.

Packaging items together leads to bulges, awkward angles, and tears. If a present comes with multiple items, make sure each one is individually wrapped.

Need gift ideas? Here are the top things we're gifting this year! 

DO: Take advantage of double-sided tape.

Tape can stick out like a sore thumb, even on the most well-wrapped gifts. Next time, choose double-sided tape, using one side to seal gifts while the other is covered completely by wrapping paper. Just cut a little extra paper to pull over the edge, and you’re good to go.

DON’T: Hold back on getting creative.

woman holding wrapped gift with evergreen

The holidays are a season of splendor and wonder, and it’s perfectly OK to have gift wrapping be part of the fun. From bows and ribbons to glitter and special paper, package gifts as extravagantly as you’d like for that extra pop under the Christmas tree, particularly if you’re going big with what’s underneath. Think about:

  • Replacing paper with tea towels
  • Using butcher paper
  • Adding greenery and pinecones in place of ribbons/bows
  • Layering paper with lace and satin ribbons
  • Hanging jingle bells on gifts

Keep the Holiday Spirit Going

When you know how to wrap a gift correctly, it makes a big difference. Remember to create a gift-wrapping station, put gifts in boxes, use high-quality supplies, take advantage of double-sided tape, and more.

Want to keep the festivities going after all your gifts are beautifully wrapped? Read our article “How to Keep the Holiday Spirit Going for Just One More Month.” 

Gift Wrapping FAQs 

How to Wrap a Gift Bow

Watch the YouTube gift wrap video below to learn how to wrap a gift bow: 

How to Wrap Hard to Wrap Presents 

Gifts come in all shapes and sizes, and some can be hard to wrap. Here are ideas for wrapping odd-shaped gifts:

  1. Put it in a gift bag
  2. Put it in a gift box and wrap the box
  3. Roll it in wrapping paper like a Tootsie Roll
  4. Use burlap or crepe paper that forms to the gift's shape