How to wrap presents creatively,
using fragments of paper and
miscellaneous items from around your house


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All you need are pieces of paper, tape, glue sticks, hot glue or double sided tape, and these three ideas.


Absorb these 3 ideas


You can use small fragments of paper.

You can use odd, non-wrapping materials, such as twigs, bottle caps or even colorful breakfast foods.


Focus on the front of the package.

The back of the package is backstage; it's ok to let it be messy.


Contrast of color.

Contrast of light and dark.

Contrast of texture or material.

Contrast of line (angled paper on rectangular boxes).


wrap art book

40 pages, 7"x7", full color, hardcover or paperback.

Gallery Four

Shopping Bag Collage

Material Variety

The paper for this package was a gray shopping bag which had a white "label" imprinted with the retailer's logo. I made a small, 3-piece collage on this imprint. I added the recipient's initials. Then I wrapped a piece of gauze ribbon in a spiral around the package. The finished wrap had a stimulating variety of textures, with subdued, tasteful coloring.

Contrast: transparency/solids. Angles/rectagles. Bright colors/grays.

Easy: no fancy drawing, just add single strokes until it is filled up.

Folded Foil-Paper Ribbon & Label

Wrapping Paper Fragments

Foil paper folds easily. The resulting paper has a delightful embossed feel to it. I made a gold foil holly-paper label, writing the name with paint markers. After I glued it on the red foil wrap, I made a "ribbon" of green foil paper and taped it on the back. This wrap uses actual wrapping paper.

Contrast: red/green. Mettalic/non-metalic. Pattern/solid.

Easy: There is a pleasure to grabbing small fragments and putting them to service quickly. I used tape to assemble this; the gold-foil square is held by piecs of rolled tape.

Fast Ribbon Wrap

for the Small Package

Two kinds of ribbon are wrapped around this gold-foil small package. First I taped a piece of blue ribbon on the back and wound it around many times till it was ready to tape again on the back. Then I did the same quick spiral technique using a piece of gold cord. I finished with a round office-supply sticker, to carry the intitals of the recipient.

Contrast: woven cord/flat ribbon. Light gold/ dark blue

Easy: Ribbon wraps are one the quicker tacatics in the wrap artist's repertoire.

Brown Wrap

Gauze Contrast

This wrap relies on the contrast of rough brown industrial paper with white gauze ribbon. I had saved this ribbon with the bow intact: the wrap artist saves time by conserving. The label was made with computer-label paper; the image was from our home-made Christmas card.

Contrast: dressy gauze/ industrial brown paper.

Easy: Recycled bow. Recycled art.

Contrast Cap

Two Fragments

This little package gains remarkable visual power from its contrasting papers. A black office-supply dot serves as its label.

Contrast: Photo pattern/ graphic pattern. Red/green.

notecardsNotecards by John Boak— Drawings of Colorado & Utah