Frugal (Emergency) Gift Wrap Tips

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Let me set the stage…It is almost midnight, all the kids are asleep and you can wrap all the presents without worrying about any little ones sneaking in and spoiling their surprise. You grab a present, grab the tape and scissors only to find out you do not have enough gift wrap to finish wrapping all the presents. What do you do to get the presents beautifully wrapped and not leave the house?

1. Think outside the gift wrap. Many people have used newspaper to wrap presents for years and it is a good emergency standby and it is a way to recycle all that newspaper.
2. Think packaging material. I received some packages this Christmas season that were wrapped in bubble wrap. These were items that did not need bubble wrap but I saved the bubble wrap (my youngest likes it so sometimes I tape it to the floor and let him jump on it). I eyed the bubble wrap and decided to wrap some presents in it. Worked like a charm.
3. Construction paper. Earlier in the day I had been making paper chain garland with my two year old. I had leftover construction paper and it is not something we use on a regular basis in my house. I took a piece of it and found it is the perfect size to wrap DVD’s and video games without any cutting needed.
4. Packing paper. I had all that brown paper bag type paper that comes in gifts sometimes. I wrapped some presents in that and added nice ribbon and bows on them to make them look pretty.
5. Kids artwork. My kids are forever bringing home their art masterpieces from school. I normally scan them into a computer to use as a picture screen saver and then trash the artwork. Since I had some nice large pictures my son had brought home I used some of those as custom gift wrap.
6. Material or jeans. Earlier in the day my son had put on a pair of jeans that had been washed too many times and they tore in a very bad place that would not stitch up nicely. I took those jeans and cut out the material I needed to wrap some presents thus recycling that material. I was also able to use some of my boys T-shirts that had stains on them in portions and were destined for the rag pile. Some had nice designs and only a spot here or there. By using zig-zag scissors I was able to make the fabric look attractive and the whole wrapping look intentional.
7. Aluminum Foil. Foil works wonderful too. It is great if you can get the foil to be perfectly smooth with no wrinkles since I love the way the lights reflect off the shiny part. However, the wrinkled foil looks nice too.

So what do you use as emergency gift wrap?

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