World wrapping paper: Map Wrapping Paper | Etsy

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Save that wrapping paper for Christmas – and save the world too | Christmas

I’m a bit of a Scrooge at Christmastime, often choosing to give experiences over things, eschewing plastic toys whenever possible, and usually making a vegetarian meal instead of the classic roast turkey. But even I can’t deny the allure of a beautifully wrapped gift.

It’s still possible to make eco-friendly choices while also giving gorgeously wrapped presents; the holiday season truly doesn’t have to mean expensive paper and tons of waste. Each year, the US spends over $3.2bn on wrapping paper and each year Britons throw out enough gift wrap to circle the globe nine times.

Here are some ways to say bah humbug to these costly, wasteful ways and embrace a green Christmas in 2016.

‘Brown paper packages tied up with string’

This famous line from The Sound of Music sums up the happy charm of a simply wrapped gift, one that remains even in today’s over-the-top culture. It’s easy to create a waste-free version of this wrapping style by reusing paper grocery bags (turned inside out and cut to fit) or by reusing paper packaging.

Depending what look I’m going for, I’ll either let my daughter decorate the paper with her drawings, or tuck a sprig of fresh greenery into the bow. Simple, pretty and waste-free.

Black and white and red all over

As a lifelong book lover, I’ve always been partial to the look of gifts wrapped in newspaper. The crisp black text on a white background lends a modern, abstract look and a thick red fabric ribbon keeps it looking luxe (I buy fabric ribbons instead of the plastic kind and also save them from gifts I receive). This is a fantastic way to use up newspapers headed to the recycling bin and kids love getting their presents wrapped in the comics section.

Furoshiki

The Japanese practice of wrapping gifts in reusable cloth dates back to the 1600s, but it has enjoyed a bit of a comeback recently as a beautiful, waste-free wrapping choice.

Whether you’re a quilter with extra fabric scraps lying around or you want to include a scarf or tea towel as part of your gift, wrapping presents in fabric is a striking departure from thin, crinkly wrapping paper. Secondhand stores are a fantastic source for beautiful silk scarves and if you’re really handy you can even sew reusable fabric gift bags.

Functional art

My daughter is a prolific artist (thankfully she hasn’t yet explored the blank canvas of my walls) so I began saving the art roll from her easel. When it’s time to wrap gifts for Christmas or her friend’s birthday parties, I use the painted paper instead of gift wrap. It’s a nice way to reuse something I’d feel guilty throwing out and our family loves seeing their gifts decorated with her wild paintings.

Now that we’ve got gift-giving sorted, what do you do with the wrapping paper on gifts received from others?

Well, despite my affection for the rip-and-tear folks among us (who can begrudge such unbridled enthusiasm?) I have absolutely no shame in being that person who carefully peels off tape and neatly folds gift wrap for later use.

Doing so reduces waste and allows an opportunity for reuse, but another reason to save that pretty paper is because a good portion of wrapping products aren’t recyclable.

That’s right, although it’s called wrapping paper, many kinds of gift wrap are actually made with shiny foil or coated in plastic film, rendering it unfit for the recycling bin. Same goes for plastic ribbons and bows (they’re inexpensive and pretty but can’t be recycled) and tissue paper (which is best reused or tossed in a compost bin if you’ve got one).

The best way to ensure you’re disposing of wrapping products properly is by checking with your local recycling department. A quick Google search of “[Your city/town] recycling guidelines” will let you know what your local recycling service prefers you to with these festive trappings.

Of course, the most effective way to reduce wrapping paper waste is to reduce gifts altogether. Consider organizing a secret santa exchange, getting just one or two gifts per child, and giving experiences instead of things. A certain Mr Grinch said it best:

It came without ribbons.

It came without tags.

It came without packages, boxes or bags.

And he puzzled and puzzled ‘till his puzzler was sore.

Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before.

What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store.

What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more…

Buy Ryan’s World Wrapping Paper & Gift Tags – Pack Of 2 for GBP 1.29

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5 Reasons Why It’s Time To Bin Christmas Wrapping…

We all want to give beautifully wrapped presents but it’s time to rethink using the rolls of wrapping paper that we’ve all dependent on for years.

5 Reasons Why It’s Time To Bin Wrapping Paper This Christmas

1. Keep rollin’

The UK gets through 100 million rolls of wrapping paper each Christmas – approximately 227,000 miles of the pretty paper stuff. That’s enough to wrap the equator nine times.

2. It’s not like other paper

As you’re slumped on the sofa half covered in discarded wrapping paper, while the cat settles down under it for a snooze, it’s tempting to think that it can all be bundled up and shoved in the recycling bin. Sadly, that’s not the case.

The Sellotape, plastic ribbons and metallic or glitter on the paper generally make it impossible to recycle so the only option is landfill or incineration.

How To Make Christmas Newspaper Wrapping Paper

3. Think of the trees

While we might all print less at work and send less letters, Christmas time sees us all go a little crazy on the paper front.

It’s estimated by DEFRA that around 50,000 trees are cut down each year to make enough paper to wrap our presents.

The UK’s Committee on Climate Change released a report in 2018 that said we need to commit to planting twice as many trees by 2020 to help capture carbon and slow down the impact of climate change.

9 Ways You Can Plant More Trees This Year

4. Think of the emissions

Most of the UK’s paper comes from Scandinavia so each roll of wrapping paper has an air mile footprint, while Greenpace found that the production process emits 3.5kg of CO2 to make one kilogram of wrapping paper.

5. Stop the sticky tape

Wrapping paper needs Sellotape / sticky tape to hold it together which isn’t recyclable. If you’re trying to do a plastic free Christmas then don’t fall down at the last hurdle over the sticky stuff.

Small bits of plastic like sticky tape often end up in the sea, breaking down into microplastics and infecting our food chains, waterways and marine wildlife.

Why does this matter again? There are eight million tonnes of plastic in our oceans.

How To Fabric Wrap Your Gifts This Christmas

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World Map Wrapping Paper (with Photos) Etsy

2 hours ago Unique Map Wrapping Paper: Vintage World Map Gift Wrap For Travel Theme Party, Baby Shower, Travel Nursery Decor. Colorful Travel Gift Wrap. JournoTravelGoods 5 out of 5 stars (335) Sale Price $11.99 $ 11.99 $ 14.99 Original Price $14.99″ (20% off