Most of us rarely spend much on gifts, so it is practical to assume that we need to save up even on the gift wrapping paper we use. It is not cheap but economical, and there are many ways to make your own homemade wrapping paper look expensive and elegant. It also adds a personal touch to the gift, making the recipient feel special knowing that you spent time and effort in giving them a great present.
Here are a few suggestions:
- You can purchase rolls of brown or craft paper from your local art supply store or you can use materials you have lying around the house. You can start by cutting it into large squares and then use paint to draw designs on them. When drawing or painting on your gift wrapping paper, use a stencil first so you will have a clear pattern to paint, or you can draw abstract images if that suits your taste. A stencil can be made by using construction paper or any type of cardboard-like paper. Draw the stencil pattern and cut in and around it using scissors or a cutter.
- Make sure also that you have a newspaper-covered working area, because art doesn't have to be messy. You can make "splatter-painted" wrapping paper by dipping toothbrushes in a paint container and then run a finger through the bristles so the paint will splatter onto the paper. You can also use stencils to form different ‘splatter patterns', just make sure you let the paint dry before you move the stencils around so as not to smudge the ‘splatter designs'. A way to create deeper shades of splatter is to use a paintbrush. Dip the brush in paint and instead of tapping the excess back into the paint container, fling it onto the paper itself. Experiment and have fun with it and you'll be surprised at all the interesting patterns you can create.
- If splatter patterns are too messy for your taste, you can use simple stamps that you've purchased, or you can make your own stamps out of an old baby shoe or vegetables. Use acrylic paint and see where your imagination takes you. Sponges can also be used to create smooth patterns such as waves, clouds and rainbows. For special events like Christmas or weddings, a great tip is to use gold or silver paint.
- Another fun way to make your own wrapping paper, is to use old magazine clippings and make collages on plain pieces of paper. This is great if you would like your wrapping paper to be fun and edgy. It's great for gifts given to teens and young people, and they will truly feel special if the collage fits their personality.
You can also use making your own gift wrapping paper as a fundraiser. This is a great opportunity to save and to be creative so as to make the recipient feel special. It's truly a fun project and as with all creative endeavors, we must think outside the box, or in this case, think around it.