If You Aren’t a Crafter, Here’s One Cheap Thing You Can Do to Fancy Up Your Gifts

published Dec 21, 2020
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This holiday season may look very different from those before it, but that doesn’t mean you can’t give picture-perfect packages to your family and friends (even if they arrive closer to the new year or after the ball has dropped). Of course, it’s the thought behind the gift inside the box, bag, or paper that really matters. If you’ve struggled in the past to make your present presentation seem special though, here’s some good news, especially for last-minute wrappers (myself included). Gift wrap artist Alton DuLaney, aka Scotch Brand’s “Most Gifted Wrapper,” says the number one key to an Insta-worthy gift is using a topper that’s from the great outdoors.

That’s right; even if you’re not the crafty type, all you have to do is raid your garden, yard, or a local park for a few decorative touches. “Natural elements like a sprig of rosemary, a bough of holly, or even a pine branch or pinecone will add both the sights and the smells of the holiday to your wrap,” says DuLaney. “The best part? It’s free.”

What’s nice about natural elements is that they go with everything. Even if you are using a roll of brown kraft, basic white wrapping paper, or old school newspaper, pinecones and greenery will spruce up these otherwise utilitarian materials. You can also use simple ribbon, twine, or even tiny craft store clothespins to attach greenery and other natural touches to brown bag tops or handles.

If you don’t have access to fresh rosemary at home, you can buy a cheap plant at the grocery store or ask a neighbor who grows this herb for a few cuttings. You can also use trimmings from your Christmas tree, if you celebrate with one, and it’s real. One last option for a natural topper is Satin-finish tape is his preference for a smooth, finished look on wrapped gifts, and when shipping gifts, he has a creative upcycle for packing materials. In lieu of styrofoam peanuts and bubble wrap, DuLaney crumples up wrapping paper scraps to add some extra cushioning and a pop of color around his gifts.