Upgrade Your Holiday Presents with These Pretty, Elevated Gift-Wrapping Ideas

red and gold painted gift-wrapping paper
Kate Mathis

During the season of giving, it's the thought that counts—a sentiment that is easy to channel as you wrap gifts for your loved ones. At this point, the leg work is done: You chose the perfect present for you parent, partner, or pal, but now it's time to go the extra mile and cover it in thematic papers and tie it off with ribbon. Approach this process with one of our gift-wrapping ideas, and you can boost the impact of your token—after all, part of the present is the presentation.

To help you elevate your own present-wrapping endeavors, we went ahead and curated several easy-to-recreate projects. Whether you decide to snip out botanical scenes and découpage them onto plain evergreen-hued wrap or coat butcher's paper with thematic red-and-gold paint (like we did, here!), there's a striking method to speak to anyone's skill level on the slides ahead. And while paper is the predominant medium when it comes to wrapping boxes, it isn't your only option. Consider deadstock and vintage textiles or functional fabric add-ons (like tea towels!) when covering pieces that don't take well to paper; wine bottles or asymmetrically shaped items come to mind.

Don't stop there—think about other accent pieces or accessories that can take your boxes to the next level. Cover neutral paper in gemstones for a hint of shimmer, tie off pieces with complementary ribbon or twine, or weave in crepe streamers for a checked effect. Keep reading for more ingenious gift-wrapping ideas—textiles, papers, details, and all.

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Button Central

christmas buttons card stock
Nico Schinco

Living's style editor-at-large Naomi deMañana adores novelty-shaped plastic buttons, because they remind her of vintage Bakelite jewelry from the 1930s. But these tiny tchotchkes are brand-spanking-new! Wildly affordable and widely available at crafts and sewing stores, they make unique gift-giving accents. Center one on a small box in place of a bow, or secure them onto card stock or tags with a twist of wire or an embroidery-floss stitch. Pick tiny bruins for Mama and Papa Bear, or add clever drawings (like our cabin-smoke names) to max out the impact of these minis.

Shop Now: Embellishment Buttons Camping Collection, $2.50 for five, etsy.com; In the Clear Mini Shipping Paper Tags, $3 for 16, etsy.com; Paper Presentation Card Stock, 8 1/2" by 11", in Ginger, $11, and Circle Cards, 4", in Matte Latte, $5.50 for 25, paperpresentation.com.

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Minty Fresh

festive wrapping holiday packages
Jessica Antola

Turn plain packages into conversation pieces with flashy store-bought bows and decorative items like garlands, stickers, and candles. Enlist a tissue-paper garland as ribbon or a striped favor bag to hold a note—or punctuate a gift with an effusive bow. A cute party candle makes their holiday wish come true; the "flame" is cut-out masking tape topped with a sticker. Last but not least, monogram a rad checkerboard package with a felt letter and a few dots of glue.

Shop Now: Oren International Kraft-Paper Roll, 36" by 200', in Light Green, $30, amazon.com; JAM Paper Gift Wrap in White, $18 for 50 square feet, target.com; JAM Paper Metallic Gift Wrapping in Silver, $14 for two 25-square-foot rolls, target.com; Choice Green Check Basket Liners, 9" by 10", $13 for 1,000, webstaurantstore.com; Oh Happy Day Festive Festooning Tissue-Paper Garland, $4 for 25 feet, shop.ohhappyday.com; Paper Mart Diagonal Stripes Merchandise Favor Bag, $2.25 for 25, papermart.com; Party City White-Tinsel Gift Bow, $2, partycity.com; Meri Meri Bright Party Candle, $11 for 24, merimeri.com; Sticko Alphabet Aphrodite sticker, $5 for 162, amazon.com.

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Botanical Découpage

decoupage gift-wrapped
Kirsten Francis

Snip out botanical scenes from vintage posters or books and découpage them onto opaque green wrapping paper. The result? Something they truly won't want to unwrap.

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Statement Crepe

crepe paper string lights for gift wrapping
Addie Juell

Looking for a more festive touch? Gold crepe paper, cinched on both ends by a fabric Christmas lights garland, transforms a rectangular box into something particularly sweet. If you're gifting two items, consider the idea to the above right; weave green streamers around a wrapped box for something extra.

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Marble Paper

decoupaged gift wrapping
Kirsten Francis

Coat circular boxes in marbled paper for a keepsake that has nothing to do with the gift inside. They'll use these striking holders to store hats, seasonal accessories, and more.

  • The Best Holiday-Neutral Wrapping Paper
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crystal gift-wrapping for the holidays
Kate Mathis

Whether you're working within a neutral color scheme—think brown and gold—or testing out some metallic patterns, a few on-palette gem stones can add some shimmer and shine.

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Towel Ties

Bryan Gardner

Who says the best gift wrapping ideas have anything to do with paper? These sweet boxes were tied off with a mix of vintage and deadstock fabrics, but you could use functional pieces, like tea towels, to add another present-worthy component.

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Philip Newton

With a series of crisp folds, glassine—or less expensive tissue—serves as both wrapping paper and ribbon.

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Vintage Linen


Wrap goods in vintage napkins, handkerchiefs, or other linens graced with lively patterns, and the packaging itself will serve as an added gift. Look for linens at flea markets or online. Fabrics are particularly helpful when wrapping articles with shapes that don't lend themselves to paper. The rest is a cinch: Gather fabric around item and item and tie it off with ribbon.

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Button Stamp


This button-stamped gift wrap is fun to make, and it's perfect for little ones' presents. Affix button to a cork with double-sided tape. Place plain paper on a piece of felt or a folded piece of fabric (this cushions the paper so the mark will be even). Top with a pretty button tied on with baker's twine.

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Jingle Bells


Re-create the sound of Santa's sleigh with a small bell attached to Christmas parcels. Purchase the bells at crafts stores, and use lengths of thin ribbon or cord to secure to packages. The box shown here is also decorated with a band of velvet ribbon.

  • 12 Ways to Recycle Leftover Gift-Wrapping Paper
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Accenting sprigs, berries, and leaves with glitter, silver paint, or micro-beads turns packages into natural wonders.

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Bottle Wrap


Wrap bottles of wine in colorful fabric and top with a spring of holly or pine for a seasonal touch.

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