I’m absolutely guilty of judging books (and almost everything else) by their covers. As a graphic designer, packaging is one of my favorite things. Gift wrap is a guilty pleasure. A well-wrapped gift is like two presents in one and I think even the most simple item is elevated by a good wrap job.
Here’s a quick tutorial I put together when I wrapped a birthday present this weekend…
What You’ll Need
wrapping paper | ribbon in two widths and colors | a cute tag
scissors | double sided tape (the secret to a clean look!)
With a steady hand and a sharp pair of scissors, cut your wrapping paper to size. I like to find interesting patterns, like this birch bark, that aren’t occasion-specific and can be dressed up with ribbon or stand on their own.
Make sure your item is centered on the sheet. For a neater edge, make a small fold at the raw edges. Bring one side about 3/4 of the way over and secure it with some double sided tape. Bring the other side over toward the center and secure it with the tape as well.
Next, tuck in the four short sides of your paper, creating an angled fold. I tend to cut my paper too long, especially when wrapping something on the thin side. Now is the time to trim down the length. Ideally, the edge of the paper should just reach the other side. Fold, crease and secure with tape.
Grab your thicker ribbon, I chose black, 1.5” ribbon. Measure it around the long side of the item. I left a 4-5 in tail so I could make some decorative folds. Position it so that it covers your seam, and the “tail” ends up at the center of the package. Secure it with tape on both sides. Create your first loop with the black ribbon by folding it back on itself about 1.5-2” and leaving a little poof.
Now, measure your thinner ribbon–I used .5” gold ribbon–around the short side of your item. Cut it so that there’s about 2-3 inches left over. Secure the left-hand end just below the black loop.
Create a second loop with the black ribbon by rolling it in the opposite direction. Secure the roll, then bring the gold ribbon around the package and through the roll, secure.
Finally, fold the gold ribbon back on itself tightly, creating a bow-like shape of the black ribbon. Secure well with tape, I used a piece across the top, and a small one to tuck in the edge.
– Every time you make a fold in your gift wrap, crease those edges!! It makes everything look tighter and sharper.
– Use good quality double sided tape to make sure your gift stays wrapped.
– I always keep an eye out for gift wrap at Marshall’s. They tend to have great quality papers in great patterns for, usually, no more than $3.