12 Easy Gift-Wrapping Techniques to Add the Thoughtfull Touch

gift wrapped in brown paper with a green bow and Polaroid photograph attached

Gift wrapping ideas that’ll make their gift as one-of-a-kind as they are.

All the thought that you put into your gift is at risk of being overlooked when you set the wrong first impression with thoughtless packaging. Rather than something that’s just torn apart and tossed aside, your wrapping paper can offer an opportunity to add meaning and make a statement. Here are 12 ways to make what’s on the outside count.

  

Throw it back with a photo collage

Select some of your favourite photos, collage them togetherand print onto paper dimensions of your choosing. Not only does this add a personal touch to your gift, but it serves as a great conversation starter for any party, as you can reflect on the memories attached to each photo.

 

Custom-made tissue paper

From eco-friendly tissue paper to paper stickers to compostable mailer bags—custom packaging companies like NoIssue allow you to design unique tissue online using your choice of colours, custom logos, and printsTry playing with your giftee’s nickname or an inside joke for a sentimental touch.

 

Make your own crossword puzzle

Use an online word search or crossword puzzle generator to create your own interactive wrapping paper. Blow up your puzzle to your desired size and have it printed at your local printer on paper you can easily wrap. Use inside jokes, their go-to food, a favourite movie, and other personal memories to craft your clues and show how well you know them. Instead of a name tag, make one of the clues your giftee’s name, fill it in, and circle it in a colour to get them started.

 

Sheet music wrapping paper

For the music lover in your life, use recycled sheet music as wrapping paper. If you don't have any sonatas lying around your house, download online and print it out in your desired dimensions. To make it even more personal, look up the sheet music of their favourite song or a song tied to a memory you two have shared.

 

Make your own watercolour paper

If you only have neutral or craft wrapping paper on hand, spice it up yourself with watercolour paints. Just make sure you let your paper dry before wrapping to avoid any seepage!

 

Marble wrapping paper

Making gorgeous marbleized gift wrap at home is easier than you’d think. Simply spray some shaving foam into a disposable sheet pan and drizzle a paint colour of your choice overtop. Use a pencil or chopstick to swirl the colour into the foam and press a sheet of white paper gently onto the mixture. Scrape away your excess foam, leave to dry, and voila—easy-peasy homemade wrapping paper.

 

Use balloons

If you want to make a bang with your present (literally), this method is perfect for a small (and non-breakable!) gift, such as concert tickets or jewellery in a small pouch. Place your gift inside a balloon along with some confetti for some added flair, then blow up and secure at the bottom. When you present the gift to your loved one get them to pop the balloon to release the gift and all the confetti.

 

Map wrap

Want to spark some wanderlust before your giftee opens a travel-related gift? Use a paper map, collage together old road maps, or print out your own—even better if the map is of a special place or has a connection to the gift you’re giving. To make the wrapping paper all the more personal, use a red pen to mark all the sites you hope to visit together one day.

 

DIY constellation wrapping paper

Using dark blue wrapping paper and a silver or gold Sharpie marker, wrap your gift and dot stars onto your surface to create the effect of a starry night sky. If it's your loved one's birthday, look up the constellation corresponding with their Zodiac sign for a more personal touch.

 

Get floral

Feeling particularly crafty? From chiffon roses to linen lilies, there are plenty of DIYs available online for creating fabric florals—just wrap your gifts in craft paper and fasten your flowers on top using ribbon or twine. You can even hot-glue your flower to a hair clip for your giftee to reuse.

 

Add colour with confetti

Fill a large bowl with confetti or sequins, and coat a portion of your already wrapped present in glue using a paintbrush. Dip your present in the bowl—then leave to dry before giving to your loved one.

 

Make them a custom tote bag

What’s better (and more eco-friendly!) than using gift wrap that your giftee can reuse? Buy a canvas tote bag and get it screen printed with their favourite saying, a nickname, or an illustration of something special to them (think their favourite brunch restaurant’s façade or a movie character they love).  

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