The holiday season is upon us!

If you’ve been following the blog, you know that this month I’ve been highlighting ways to have a more eco-friendly holiday. I think most of us probably realize that we are much more wasteful during this time of year, but the statistics are really staggering.

Americans generate an extra 1 million tons of garbage per week from Thanksgiving to Christmas!

And if every American family only used two feet of ribbon (most of us probably use much more!) it would be enough to tie a bow around the earth!

So today, I want to talk about how we can cut down on our holiday waste by using eco-friendly wrapping. Here are a few ideas:

1) Don’t wrap.

Eco-friendly wrapping inspiration | paper bag and unwrapped glass paperweight

I know, I know, this is the no-fun option but it’s the most eco-friendly. My husband and I have foregone wrapping presents for each other for most of our relationship. I know that he doesn’t care about gift presentation, so if I did spend time wrapping it would be wasted on him. Think about if you have someone in your life who couldn’t really care less about gift aesthetics, and consider skipping the wrapping paper for them this year.

2) Use what’s laying around the house.

Old book page wrapping paper |

You probably have a ton of stuff you can use – be creative! We have a subscription to the New York Times Sunday paper so there is always a pile of newspaper hanging around the house. You can make it look more festive by decorating with markers.

Any millennial readers are probably like, hardcopy newspaper what?? You guys probably have some brown paper bags or old books hanging around that you can use in the same way.

You also might have some mason jars, dust bags for shoes, old twine – clean out the junk drawer and see what you find!

3) Save old wrapping materials.

Old fabric and recycled bow |

If you are an American over the age of one, you probably received some presents within the last year. If you were already thinking ahead, maybe you saved some of those old materials – boxes, wrapping paper, tissue paper, ribbon. But if you didn’t – it’s never to late to start! Next Christmas will be here before you know it.

4) Stop over at the thrift store.

Eco-friendly wrapping materials |

Be on the lookout for interesting materials you can use for wrapping – old maps, books, scarves, fabrics. If you’re lucky, maybe you’ll even find a half used roll of wrapping paper or ribbon.

5) Check the backyard.

Eco-friendly wrapping | paper bag and leaf cutting |


To add the finishing touch to your eco-wrapped gifts, you can add fresh cut flowers (if you live in Southern California like me) or evergreen cuttings/pine cones/leaves. Maybe you even have a half package of fresh rosemary in your fridge that you can’t figure out how to use. Visually and olfactorialy pleasing!

Check out my Pinterest account for more inspiration!

Or browse my other posts about celebrating an eco-friendly holiday.

Have you tried any eco-friendly wrapping ideas? Do you ever just skip the wrapping all together?