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BellaOnline's Crafts for Kids Editor

Creative Homemade Wrapping Paper

Have you ever gotten caught with a great gift for someone, but had not so great wrapping paper to dress it in? Say for example, you only had Christmas wrapping for a baby shower gift? Or perhaps you didn't have any gift wrap at all and the gift was delivered in the store bag it was brought home in? My family is... guilty as charged! Usually we fall victim to last minute gift shopping with no time to think of the wrapping paper. Luckily, around the home can be found items with which you can use to wrap gifts; and the children may be enticed and challenged to help with this one.

To create a natural and eco-friendly look to your gift, use a brown paper bag as wrapping. Twine or rope used as ribbon add to the environmentally friendly look. Likewise, torn strips of material compliment as well. Simply use the bag as you would any other wrapping paper.

Here's a great wrapping tip for a children's gift: bubble wrap!!! The bubble wrap allows just enough of the gift to peek through, leaving the kids guessing what it is at the party. You'll find with bubble wrap that the child may indeed play with the wrapping more than the gift itself. Besides, who can resist the addicting sound of popping when you squeeze it? Once you have wrapped the gift you will likely have raised areas where two pieces of bubble wrap were taped together. Try to cover these areas with ribbon or a bow.

A few years ago at Christmas time, I went bananas with bows on the gifts we shared. One box stands out as the "best dressed" gift that year. This idea will work best with small gifts, 3 inches or so or smaller or gifts that have a uniformly colored outer box already. I wrapped a bow around all sides of the gift using shiny silver holiday garland. Because the package was small, the end result was a sparkly, furry looking cube that came alive with movement.

A final gift wrapping idea I would like to share with you builds on the idea of piecing together smaller items to make a sheet of wrapping large enough for your gift. When connecting the items, whenever possible, use double sided tape to secure each overlapping piece. Your final product will have a cleaner appearance this way. Try piecing together artificial leaves and / or flowers, old comic book pages, pictures from a calendar, candy wrappers, toy store advertisements, newspaper clippings, or photos.

Have you ever had to wrap a gift with anything out of the ordinary? Our community would love to hear about it! Post it in the Crafts for Kids forum!

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