You Don't Have to Use Wrapping Paper

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I was speaking with a paper retailer recently who was lamenting the fact that so many people walk into her store looking for gift wrap and leave when they don't find it. While she usually carries only a limited selection of standard wrapping paper, her store is full of gorgeous specialty papers from all around the world — places like Japan, Nepal and Brazil.

Many people get stuck on the idea that to wrap a gift, one needs to use wrapping paper. But I encourage you to explore the options beyond those glossy rolls and patterned sheets. Part of the reason why my wrapping style stands out is because most of the time I don't use traditional wrapping paper; I select nonstandard materials like imported papers, sewing trims and unusual decorations. For example, the gift above is wrapped in wallpaper (the grey plaid) and a burger basket liner (the yellow stripes). (For instructions on how to wrap with two papers like in the photo, read this post.)

So, to inspire you to look beyond the usual rolls of gift wrap, here are 19 other papers you can use for wrapping:

  1. Kraft paper
  2. Wallpaper
  3. Imported decorative papers
  4. Handmade papers
  5. Paper bags
  6. Newspaper and newsprint
  7. Posters
  8. Tissue
  9. Parchment paper
  10. Wax paper
  11. Scrapbooking paper
  12. Magazine pages
  13. Photocopied photos or other images
  14. Cloth or fabric
  15. Cellophane
  16. Crepe paper
  17. Origami paper
  18. Architectural blueprints
  19. Maps
Are there other types of paper you use?