So much to do, so little time this Christmas. With presents hidden all over the house, there’s only so much wrapping we can take before our scissor hands cramp, and we get sticky tape in our hair.
Wrapping is both a joy and a chore during the festive season, especially for those of us who are less than coordinated when it comes to those awkwardly shaped packages.
Therefore we’ve shared our top ten wrapping tips to help you beat the stress this Christmas, and make what’s under the tree look just as pretty as the decorations on top of it!
1. Set the scene
The happier and cosier you are, the less likely you are to feel stressed by your wrapping. So light your favourite scented candles, grab some mulled wine and a stack of mince pies and get started.
2. Take the time to prep
The prepping stage of wrapping is perhaps the most fiddly, so why not get it out of the way early to avoid annoyance later down the line?
Remove all labels, stickers and cellophane from your gifts, unwind all ribbon, string and decorative bows, find the end of the sellotape, and cut yourself a good 50 small pieces (stuck in various locations around you) to quickly grab and attack your wrapping pile.
3. Start with the biggest
Evaluate the items which you know will use the most wrapping paper, and start by approaching those first.
This will help you to evaluate just how many rolls you’ll need to pick up in your next Christmas shop, or how many presents you’re willing to leave unwrapped in a nice festive bag instead.
4. Always perform a tight fold
The tighter the fold over straight edges and corners, the neater your present will look. Use your nails or scissors to mark a straight line in the paper, and crease as close to your gift as possible before sticking down.
When wrapping cubes or cuboids, this rule also applied to the end folds as well, when you pinch the two end pieces of paper into triangles, and stick them all down together in one neat square.
5. Use paperweights
Paperweights don’t have to be actual paperweights to achieve the same result – a heavy remote control, phone, mug or un-lit candle will do pretty much the same job of holding down any curling edges of wrapping paper trying to escape your grasp.
Having a collection of these weighty items nearby will save you a lot of stress, and will help to keep your paper from tearing or bubbling when it eventually gets stuck down.
6. Use side slits for round objects
Wrapping tubes, spheres or any rounded edge object is every novice wrapper’s nightmare. But it can be done, and done well, if you just remember to snip.
When the two width edges of the paper meet and are stuck down, the edges of the paper are usually left open and awkward to fold, so snip slits up towards the gift, at various points of the paper, and fold all of the panels down to make a smoother end.
7. Don’t be afraid of decoration
Whether it be a simple tag, or a double knot candy cane twine with decorative snowflake stamp and ornamental robin, wrapping decorations are a great opportunity to get creative with your presents.
Use left over ribbon to make bows along your string, cut snowflakes into plainer wrapping paper, loop dried orange slices into ribbon bows, or attach a few cinnamon sticks into a loop for that scented festive finish!
8. Mark each present with initials
There’s nothing worse than wrapping up a whole pile of presents, and then immediately forgetting what’s what and who for.
To avoid having to tearfully unwrap all of your hard work just to remember whether these were the slippers for mum, or for dad, write a small initial somewhere on your paper to help you recall who to write each tag for.
9. Get creative with tags
If you’ve run out of cute festive tags, then why not get creative with your substitutes.
Grab a couple of chalkboard pens and stickers, and modernise your gift! Or use a scrap of different wrapping paper, and write a heartfelt note on the back of it, before tying it onto your gift with twine.
Even plain white tags can look pretty when written in fun red and gold Sharpies and glitter pens!
10. Have fun!
You only get to wrap this many presents once a year, and when they’re all finished and unwrapped, it’s always a slightly melancholy moment. So make the most of your chance, and make this year’s wrapping the best one yet!
It’s time to tackle the pile, and give in head first to your mountain of wrapping. But with these tips, you should be finished in no time, and can get back to doing the things you love the most this Christmas time.
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