garbage day after Christmas
One change has occurred in our household during the last few years - Garbage Day after Christmas. Our garbage is collected at the roadside once per week, on Thursdays. We used to have at least three big bags of garbage after the frenzy of opening presents and discarding the wrapping paper. But, since I began wrapping presents in fabric, we have far less garbage after Christmas – no more extra bags of wrapping paper.
I disliked buying wrapping paper every year. We usually spent a lot of money on wrapping paper and were always running out. It seemed a waste of money and not very environmentally friendly.
A few years ago, I changed to fabric for wrapping. I waited for the sale on Christmas fabric at my local fabric store and bought several meters in various designs at about $2.00 per meter. I also bought a large amount of stretchy metallic chord and some pretty ribbon by the meter. I tore the fabric into different sizes, to cover a variety of gift sizes. I also tried hemming the fabric but I gave that up after tedium set in. We have never noticed the difference between hemmed and raw-edged fabric.
The challenge of using fabric is closing the fabric securely around the gift, since it’s important to make sure the packages don’t come undone. We tried various types of closures for the fabric-wrapped presents including tape (doesn’t stick), diaper pins (ugly) and plain ribbon (slippery). The best way to close the presents securely is to use lots of stretchy metallic chord, supplemented by ribbon.
To secure tags is easy. I use cut up Christmas cards for tags (I have enough card tags to last us 20 years at the current rate of gift-giving). I secure the tags by tucking them securely under the ribbon or chord, or by punching a hole in the tag and securing it with string or ribbon.
I asked a few people what they liked best about unwrapping paper-wrapped presents, and they always say the sound of the paper crinkling and tearing is a factor. So this year, I included a thin wrapping of tissue paper with each gift, at a fraction of the cost of wrapping paper.
I think it takes a little longer to wrap gifts using fabric, but, to me, they are just as pretty.
The method pays for itself within 2 or 3 years. You do have to ask friends and relatives to return the fabric and ribbon after they have unwrapped their presents!!!
Copyright Jane Tims 2012