Homemade Gift Wrapping Ideas

After spending a lot on your friends and family while holiday shopping, you probably don’t want to have to shell out even more money on fancy wrapping paper and bows.


Gift box


Fortunately, it’s a lot more fun to make the wrapping yourself, and it can be done with items that you already have lying around the house.

Wrapping Paper

Recycle brown paper bags for wrapping gifts. It’s cheap, but less noticeably so than using newspaper, especially because you can decorate it with holiday-themed stamps. Old maps also look pretty neat when used instead of wrapping paper. Fabric is another great eco-friendly way to wrap gifts—and even better, it can be recycled year after year. Simply bundle up the gift and tie it all together with a ribbon.


Instead of purchasing specially-made gift bags, just about any solid-colored bag will do. If your gift is small enough, even paper lunch bags will do the trick. To spruce it up a bit, stamp on a festive pattern or clasp it together with a ribbon. A doily is a great way to make a fancy nametag on an otherwise plain gift bag.


There are a ton of different ways to make homemade bows instead of buying them. If you’re looking for shiny bows like the ones you can buy at the store, an inside-out potato chip bag works perfectly. Simply cut the bag into three two-inch wide strips. Then make each strip into a circle and tape the middles together so that they each form into the shape of a bowtie. Tape the centers of the bows to each other to make the bow base. Then add a smaller circle in the center of the bowties to cover up the tape.

Bows can also be made from magazine paper. Find a page that has a central color scheme (ads typically work best) and cut strips that are about an inch wide. Cut three strips that are the full height of the page, three strips that are about two inches shorter, two strips that are two inches shorter than that, and one strip that is only three inches long. Twist all but the shortest strip so that a loop forms on both ends, and tape it together at the center. Then the shortest strip can be formed into a circle and taped together as well. Create the first layer of the bow by using the longest loops to form a star shape. Then layer the shorter loops until it looks like a typical Christmas bow. Add the circle to the center of the bow to finish it off.

Not only does wrapping a gift need not be expensive, but it can also become a fun annual craft for the entire family. These tips are also great if you’re a procrastinator and want to make your presents look nice, but don’t have the time to run out and grab supplies. Plus, you’ll impress your family by how much hard work and personalization you put into wrapping their gifts.

Here at Salem Cross Inn, Christmastime is one of our favorite seasons. In fact, we host a celebration of the season every year, called Christmas Memories, where actors perform carols while guests dine on a traditional New England turkey dinner. But whatever the season, Salem Cross Inn serves delicious meals made from locally-sourced ingredients in a traditional colonial atmosphere. Contact us today to make a reservation!