Ah, yes. It’s time to remind myself (as if I needed the reminder) of my personal rule: No New Wrapping Papers. I give in on ribbons, invisible tape, and a few other basics. But as for wrapping paper, I dig in my heels.
Wrapping paper is:
- rarely recycled
- even more rarely recyclable
- not suitable for fireplaces
- wasteful (as in it fills the garbage bin)
- a waste of money
I am lenient on the re-use of gift bags – key word, re-use. I stuff the aforementioned bags with reused and reusable tissue. Sometimes we even decorate a plain bag with small scraps of re-purposed wrapping paper.
Keep sending the old fashioned snail mail holiday cards! Besides enjoying them, we reuse many cards as gift tags. I cut circles out of cards to make decorative tops for canned goods (pickles and jams, especially).
My family still gives me a hard time when I carefully unwrap big packages in order to re-use portions of the paper. That doesn’t stop me from doing it.
I ran into a dilemma yesterday. What about buying wrapping paper at a thrift store? Well, that kind of purchase doesn’t waste as much money, and the purchase price often goes toward a good cause. However, gift wrap purchased elsewhere is still rarely recycled or recyclable, and still not suitable for fireplaces. It’ll still fill the garbage bin, too. I decided not to buy it.
Readers, can you help me expand on the environmentally sound wrapping wisdom? Comment if you can.
Newspaper comics are great wrapping. They would go to recycling eventually, so the gift is simply an extra stop on the way.