Alternative Gift Wrap Ideas

Alternative Gift Wrap Ideas

Alternative Gift Wrap

Wrapping gifts can be expensive. Last year I shared my tips for creating alternative gift packaging. Below you will find a few tips from Mrs. Not Made of Money. Start looking for packaging ideas now!

It’s always a challenge in our house to stretch our holiday budget to its absolute limits. I am a stickler about staying within the confines of our budget so I have to be creative when it comes to finding inexpensive ways to wrap the gifts I give. My goal is to make the gift look attractive, but not pay more for the wrap than the gift! Here are a few ways I stretch the budget when it comes to gift wrap:

Alternative Gift Wrap

Wrap with newspaper
I love the graphic quality of newspaper. Begin by wrapping your package with sheets of newspaper. I prefer the sections that don’t have a lot of pictures like the classifieds, but use anything that appeals to you. Then, top the package with a mass of curling ribbon or other brightly colored adornment. Your packages will be so pretty that no one will ever guess that you chose your wrapping material because it was cheap.

Use butcher paper
Large sheets of white butcher paper create the perfect canvas for you to create custom (but cheap) wrapping paper. You can use acrylic paint to decorate your paper. Use stencils or stamps to apply the paper, or you can even paint a freehand design on the paper. Your cheap white paper can take on any look you like.

Use last year’s paper
If you know that you simply don’t have the time to do a lot of embellishing on your wrapping paper, you can always opt to purchase traditional wrapping paper. You don’t have to pay full price, though. Pick up your wrapping paper after Christmas has passed. Then, pack it away with your Christmas decorations. You’ll be totally prepared next year when you’re ready to starting wrapping.

Shop the Dollar Store
My local dollar store has fabulous themed wrapping paper for just $1 per roll.

Recycle old bags
Gift bags make wrapping presents incredibly easy, but have you noticed how expensive they are? It hardly seems fair that you spend two or three dollars on a bag that only gets used and adored for a minute. That’s why I re-use my old gift bags. Anytime someone gives me a gift in a gift bag, I save the bag to use on someone else’s gift later.

Sew re-usable bags
I found out about this idea last year. Basically, you just use whatever fabric you have on hand and sew a basic bag to place the gift in. Then you save the bags for the next year!

Cheap and Inexpensive Alternative Gift Wrap Ideas was reprinted with permission from

Topic: Alternative Gift Wrap

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  1. Heather Chandler says

    I use old maps. Many states have them for free at welcome stations. We pick them up when traveling for vacation. Then when we return, they go into the wrapping paper bin.

      • Heather P says

        Be sure to scan it and then you can use it to do double duty – wrapping paper and then the scans can be turned into personalized note cards that can be printed again and again. Oh! and be sure to put the child’s name and age on the back of the note card so the sender/recipient will know who did it and at what age.

        • Madame Deals says

          You are so smart! That is a wonderful idea! The artwork will be preserved but not in a huge stack on my table like it currently is!

  2. sheri finta says

    I love to make bows out of tulle – it is realy cheap by the yard, – I cut strips of it and mix the colors, or not…makes lovely airy bows that do not crush.

  3. Sarah says

    You know the long peices of brown paper that comes in packages? My kids LOVE coloring on them and then reuse it as wrapping paper. I save most of the boxes as well. Not to mention, Im the person that always saves and reuses the holiday gift bags every year. LOL! Plus I always save the comics out of the Sunday paper to reuse as well.

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