“Wrapping gifts doesn’t have to be too stressful. If you have a handful to wrap, I might suggest pouring a glass of wine and putting on some music.”
- Gather your materials: paper, ribbon, tape, scissors, and any fun tags or decorations you
- Make sure you have plenty of hard, flat space to work—dining room table, kitchen counter,
- Roll out your paper to the amount you think you’ll need, then place the widest side of your gift at the cut edge. Flip the gift over toward the roll so that each side of the gift hits the paper once.
- Give yourself 1–2 extra inches past where the box is and cut your paper from the roll
- Place the gift facedown in the middle of the sheet and wrap the paper around the gift, creasing the edges along the box as you go. Use one piece of tape to secure it in the center (tape paper to paper, not paper to box).
- Trim the paper at the two open ends of the box, leaving just enough to fold about halfway down the box ends (too much paper here makes it harder to get crisp corners).
- Fold the top of the paper down and crease at the sides on a Fold in the flaps like an envelope, and fold the bottom corner up (if it doesn’t come to a nice point, fold the edge over for a clean crease). Secure both ends with one piece of tape. Repeat on the other side.
- Add ribbon; wrap it around the box while it’s still on the roll so you don’t accidentally cut it too short. Keep bows simple (i.e., easy to untie) and cut the ends of the ribbon on a
Anna Bond is the cofounder and chief creative officer of Rifle Paper Co., an international stationery and lifestyle brand based in Winter Park, Florida. Rifle Paper Co.’s signature aesthetic is shaped by Anna’s hand-painted illustrations.
You always want to measure a sheet that’s just big enough to cover the gift you’re trying to wrap—too much paper makes the gift look bulky. The extra inch or two can be used to fold over the cut edges of the paper before securing them together (Anna loves this little trick to make the package look neater). Don’t use too much tape and don’t tape the paper to the gift, as it risks damaging the present (and makes it harder for the recipient to unwrap). Creasing the paper along the edges of the box will give you a nice clean finish. Anna’s favorite ribbons are velvet or cotton—try to have colors on hand that will match any wrapping paper design. And she always wraps the ribbon around both sides of the package.
Pro tip: If something is oddly shaped, Anna suggests trying to wrap with lightweight paper—and have fun with it. Wrap the paper around a stuffed animal and gather it all at the top, then secure it with a giant bow. Of course gift bags are always nice to have on hand for those difficult-to-wrap gifts and make things much easier. Just make sure there is enough tissue to cover the gift so it’s not visible from the top. Then add a few fluffed-up sheets so the bag looks full.
A word about wrapping paper storage:
It should be practical and doesn’t have to take up too much space (you don’t need a dedicated wrapping room). The key is keeping all your supplies together and easy to access. Anna suggests storing wrapping rolls in one tall basket in a closet with a box of ribbons, tape, and scissors next to it (keep these scissors and tape separate from your everyday ones so you don’t have to search for them every time you want to wrap). Keep greeting cards and tags in a separate box.
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