Hello lovely ladies.
I know, I've been harping on about Christmas a lot recently, but today's post needs to be a little early, if you wanted to join in!
Me & my boyfriend are both from quite large families, for example my boyfriend has 5 siblings. That's a lot of presents! But more importantly, it's a whole lot of wrapping paper! I worked out last year, that we spent nearly £30 on wrapping paper. £30! That's a whole lot of money, on what gets torn off on Christmas day, to either go in the bin or the recycling shortly after that. So I started thinking of ways of getting around it. And then it came to me when I pulled out my crafty box, I'd make my own! I've been at it for a couple of weeks now, so I thought I'd share my how to, but first, what will you need?
- Brown parcel paper. The one photoed is from Poundland but its such good quality it could be from any where, and comes in 8 meter rolls.
- Stamps - The ones above are from Hobby Craft, a craft shop in town & the polar bear in the Christmas hat is from Etsy here.
- Ink - The red one is a cheapy one you can pick up from shops like Hobby Craft & the Dormy is one thats been in the house forever.
- Scissors - Bee theme is of course optional, but these ones are from Paperchase.
I thought about different ways I could do this, I thought about continuously stamping on to the roll, but wit limited space in the flat & a cat that loves nothing more in this world than paper, it seemed easier to cut around a meter off at a time and stamp on to that. It also means that I can vary the patterns a bit. One thing to take in to consideration is that the brown parcel paper is around 2/3rds of the size of a normal roll of wrapping paper, so if your buying a very tall and long present you may struggle to fit the gift inside the paper, however I know that Ikea sells brown paper normal sized wrapping paper, but its a little more expensive than this purse friendly one.
So, grab a pad (filthy lid is of course, optional) and a stamp & get inking. Here's one I've made, and some tips from what I've learnt.
Random polar bears. A piece of wrapping paper like this (just stamping where ever) is really quick & easy, around 5 minutes or so. It doesn't need to be even particularly, but if you stand up every now and again its easier to see if you have more stamps on one side or the other.
Something a bit more intricate will take much longer, a repeating pattern in lines looks snazzy, but each line takes around 10 minutes. This piece with repeating snowflake trees took around 45 minutes to finish, and this was made a lot easier as this stamp was a clear stamp mounted on a acrylic block (which are marked with a grid for easy alignment) so take than in to account when starting! I found if I did a few lines and had a break for a while I got less frustrated.
Gone wrong? Smudge a stamp? Ppft don't worry! No one is going to notice once its wrapped around a gift, but if it really bothers you, once you come to using it as wrapping paper just cut it off!
Now, when I think of "brown paper packages" which is essentially what the gifts will be once there wrapped up, I follow that thought up with "tied up with string". But string, can be scratchy and unpleasant to use, so when I spotted red, candy cane striped twine in a craft shop I picked it up and thought "that's perfect!", but I flipped it over and saw the price, £3.99 for 5 meters. I had a quick look in to it, and found it on eBay, for £1.69 for 20 meters (here)! This is technically "cooking twine" but it feels and looks exactly the same, sans Christmas packaging.
So far, I've made around 6(ish, I haven't measured) meters in all different patterns, it's taken a few weeks (mainly because I've been a bit lazy and forgot to do it!) but I'm really pleased with how its coming along, and I'm really hoping that my friends and family like it! It feels a bit more personal and I think it looks nice. I've also worked out that I've spent around £4 on 4 rolls of paper, £10ish on stamps and £1 on ink (I did already have two stamps and an ink pad) so I've literally cut in half what I spent last year. Which is winning in my book! And I will be reusing the stamps next year, so hopefully next year my spend of wrapping paper will be even lower!
So ladies, have I enticed you at all to make your own?