How to wrap presents like a pro, decoration ideas and ribbon alternatives

How To Wrap A Box

Place your box on your wrapping paper, and loosely wrap the paper around the box, to get an approximate measure of the amount of paper you’ll need. Add an extra 5 cm on each side, and cut the paper.

For wrapping technique, take a look at some of the many ‘how to wrap’ videos online, and then follow these tips for a great finish:

  • Use large scissors to cut the paper. Ideally, start with a half-cut, then slide the open scissors along the paper;
  • Smooth out jagged paper edges by folding the edge under;
  • Use good quality tape with a fairly wide width;
  • Don’t have too much paper hanging over the ends of the box, as it’ll make the fold lumpy. If needed, trim the ends before folding under.

How To Wrap A Cylinder

To make wrapping easier, place small items in a cylinder, or make your own with a roll of stiff card. Tape your wrapping paper around the cylinder, leaving about 15 cm overhanging at each end. Twist each end and secure with a string or small elastic band, then cover that up with a ribbon.

To wrap a bottle, use the same method, but fold under and tape down the paper over the bottom of the bottle. Trim down the excess paper at the bottom to about 2cm before folding, so the bottle will still stand flat.

Using A Gift Bag Or Gift Box

For really awkward shaped presents, pop them in a gift bag or box. They come in all shape and sizes, and can be re-used again and again.  You can close off the top of your gift bag with staples and cover the edge with ribbon, or use decorative paper clips.

Great Gift Wrapping Embellishments

Adding a ribbon and bow will give your present that pro finishing touch.  Match the width of ribbon to the size of the present – a bigger present needs wider ribbon for balance.

Add interest with these ribbon alternatives, and experiment with layering several materials together.

  • Strips of wrapping paper, with the raw edges folded under for neatness;
  • A strip of lace;
  • Washi tape;
  • Coloured duct tape;
  • Coloured string, wrapped around several times

Finish off with a stick-on bow, or try something different:

  • Fake or dried foliage wrapped in string;
  • Small bells, charms or a Christmas ornament;
  • Woollen pom poms (leave a long end of string hanging out when you make them, to tie on);
  • A decorative hair-clip or brooch, clipped on to the ribbon