Blue

3 Ways to Wrap Cookies

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My sister does a lot of baking, and she makes more than she could ever eat all by herself. So she treats her coworkers, friends and family (lucky me!) to tasty sweets every now and then.

The thing is, standard resealable baggies are pretty dull and boring. My sister was looking for a nice way to transport cookies that looked good but not too fussy – these aren't gifts, after all.

So, Sis, this one's for you: Three pretty-but-easy ways to wrap cookies for sharing. (Thanks for helping me bake these tasty triple chocolate ones, by the way!)

1. Cellophane Bag

Instead of a plastic baggie, use a cellophane bag and tie it with a nice ribbon. I used satin ribbon here, but velvet, grosgrain or organdy would look lovely too – any beautiful ribbon you like would work. You can find packages of cellophane favour bags at dollar stores, usually in the party decorations aisle. If you have trouble holding the bag closed and tying the ribbon tight enough at the same time, cinch the bag with a twist-tie first, then tie the ribbon over it.

2. Paper Bag

Available from the grocery store, brown paper lunch bags are another option for transporting treats. After filling the bag with cookies, fold the top down and seal with a sticker. Use a decorative seal or pretty sticker, or write the type of cookie on an adhesive label. If your cookies are a little greasy, wrap them in wax paper before placing in the bag so they don't leave oil marks on the paper.

3. Gift Box

A decorative, cardboard gift box will protect more delicate cookies. A 4"-square box (as shown here) is a good size in most cases, but you can find boxes in many sizes to suit your needs. Gift and paper stores often carry nicely patterned boxes, online retailers such as Creative Bag have a good selection, or a place like Uline sells plain ones in bulk.

Before putting your cookies in the box, line it with wax paper. You can fold a sheet of wax paper to line the box, or use two cut strips like I did for a tidier package.

For a 4"-square box, each strip should be a smidgen less than 4" wide and approximately 19" long. The strips need to be long enough to line the sides and bottom of the box, with enough to overlap atop the cookies. To determine how long your strips of wax paper should be for any size box, measure around the box, then add a few inches to allow for overlap.

For example, strip 1 should be the same width of the box, and be long enough to line the box from front to back, with overlap. The width of strip 2 should be the same as the depth of the box (from front to back) and be long enough to line the box from side to side, with overlap.

For an extra touch, cut your wax paper with pinking shears, a scallop-edged rotary cutter or other decorative scissors.

Once your wax paper is cut, place one strip so it lines the box from front to back, and the second strip so it runs from side to side. The strips should cross each other on the bottom, like a "+" sign.

Fill the box with cookies and fold the flaps of wax paper over them. Close the box and seal with a sticker or label. You're now ready to impress your friends and coworkers with yummy, beautifully wrapped treats!

A small note about freshness: None of these three solutions will keep the cookies as fresh as a resealable bag. If you are concerned that the cookies might not get eaten right away and you want to ensure they stay fresh, opt for a decorative tin instead.

Easter Egg Wrap How-to

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I never think of Easter as much of a gift-giving occasion, but it inspires such lovely spring motifs and colour-palettes. These small, speckled blue styrofoam eggs, which I found at the dollar store, were my jumping off point for this package.

My first inclination was to pair the eggs with a flax-colour paper and garden twine, but that combo has been so done, I was bored before I even started. Instead of going for a soft, nest-inspired palette, why not make the blue pop against a complementary orange-yellow? Add a touch of pink and you have a trio of Easter colours, but with a little more modern oomph than traditional pastels.

I threaded the eggs onto three colours of embroidery floss to make up the bow, while three layers of tissue cut with a scalloped edge create a flower-like pouf at the top of the gift.

Materials:
  • 3 sheets of tissue paper (2 sheets of colour A, 1 sheet of colour B)
  • 3 colours of embroidery floss
  • 6 styrofoam eggs (I found these speckled blue ones at the dollar store), or other decorative item, such as beads or small faux flowers
How-to:
  1. On one piece of tissue in colour A, trace a circle  large enough so it will leave a nice pouf when gathered around the gift; a general rule of thumb is to have at least two inches above the gift. Using a scalloped-edged rotary cutter or pinking shears, cut the circle out.
  2. Cut a slightly larger circle from the sheet of tissue in colour B, then another slightly larger circle from the third sheet of tissue (the second sheet of colour A). There should be 1-4" difference in diameter between each circle. Set aside.
  3. Cut a length of each colour of embroidery floss long enough to tie around the gathered tissue, plus a little extra to allow for tying knots.
  4. Thread a needle with one length of floss, then thread through a styrofoam egg from tip to bottom. To secure the egg in place, tie a knot on either side, as close to the egg as possible. From the bottom end of the egg, cut off any excess thread. Attach a second egg to the other end of the floss in the same way. Repeat with the other two colours of floss. You should have three lengths of floss, each threaded with two eggs (one on either end).
  5. Stack the three tissue circles so they are centred, with the smallest circle on the bottom and the largest on the top.
  6. Place your gift in the centre, then gather up the tissue around the gift and tie with the three egg-decorated embroidery flosses. I tied all three pieces of floss together as one bow, but you may find it easier to tie each one separately. Adjust tissue pouf as necessary before tightening the bow.