This year, consider ditching the brightly coloured wrapping paper in favour of a stylish and sustainable natural alternative.

 As Christmas approaches, many of us will soon begin shopping for the perfect Christmas presents – and there’s nothing quite like receiving a beautifully wrapped gift.

This year, consider ditching the reams of brightly coloured wrapping paper in favour of a stylish and sustainable natural alternative that your friends are family will love.

Why choose natural gift wrapping

Christmas tends to be a time of excess, and reports estimate that during the holidays, the average household increases their waste output by around 30 percent. However, cutting back doesn’t have to mean making sacrifices – and your gift wrapping can be a great place to start.

While many of us assume that all wrapping paper is recyclable, varieties that contain foil, glitter or plastics cannot be recycled and must be disposed of in landfill. The same goes for certain types of non-recyclable cellophane, too. However, by switching to natural or eco-friendly materials, your gift wrapping can completely recyclable. And, in some cases, it may even be compostable.

In addition to being a better option for the environment, natural gift wrapping can also be a more affordable option and save you money that can be put towards better use. Plus, with the right materials, it can also be a highly aesthetically pleasing option!

What materials to consider

For a simple base, you can’t go past trusty brown kraft paper – but be sure to choose the natural, unbleached option. Used kraft paper can be disposed of in your regular recycling bin or it can be used to help enrich your home compost heap. Be sure to remove any sticky tape before disposing, or you can consider purchasing an eco-friendly option.

Now for the fun part – personalising your gifts with beautiful, natural accessories and finishing touches. Here are some of the additional materials that you might like to consider. And, best of all, they can all be recycled or composted!

  • Roll of twine: Used as an alternative to ribbon, wrapping your gifts with a twine bow will give them an old-world charm and can be a helpful way to attach other decorative accents you might light to add.
  • Dried orange slices: Adding dried orange slices to your gifts can give them a fragrant, festive feel – and they’re super easy to make! Simply lay your orange slices on a lined baking tray, and dehydrate on a low oven temperature until dry.
  • Cinnamon sticks: Another pantry find, incorporating cinnamon sticks into your gift wrapping is an easy way to leave a lasting impression. Simply tie with twine, and consider layering in a group of two or three.
  • Dried or foraged foliage: Dried or forage foliage can be a great way to embrace nature and elevate your gift wrapping. Eucalyptus leaves can be an ideal choice, and gift your gifts a fresh, enticing scent.
  • Babies breath flowers: Always a crowd favorite, babies breath flowers make for the perfect accompaniment to natural-style gift wrapping. Simply snip a few stems and attach with twine.

Mix it up and get creative

While the ideas above should be enough to help you get started, there are no rules! Have fun with it, and remember to look for natural, sustainable options where possible. Try to be resourceful and use what you have on hand – whether in your home or within your own backyard.

Consider experimenting with different combinations, and you may even look to Pinterest for different natural gift wrapping ideas. You could also think about finding ways to personalise your wrapping for the recipient’s individual style for a truly memorable gift.


By Kellie George

Home and lifestyle blogger with a passion for sustainable living and all things DIY