This blog post is for you if you are looking for cheap ways to make home-made eco-friendly wrapping paper. It’s also a Christmas activity to help keep the kids busy.

Do you spend the whole of the year trying to recycle and make as many planet friendly decisions as possible, and then when it comes to Christmas wrapping paper, it all goes out the window?

Did you know that not all wrapping paper is recyclable?

We all like our presents to look amazing, wrapped in beautiful festive designs with fancy ribbons and bows. It is however, probably the worst dilemma for the environmentally conscious consumer.

Plus, it takes a few seconds for kids to rip off and destroy all of your spectacularly wrapped gifts.

Depending on what your wrapping paper is made from, it may be recyclable. If not, that wrapping paper will end up in landfill.

Wrapping paper with sticky tape attached, ribbons and bows, or a plastic coating cannot be widely recycled.

What can be recycled however is gift wrap made from brown kraft paper.

If you don’t want to make your own but still want eco-friendly wrapping paper, you can buy ready-made recyclable. Please like IKEA, John Lewis, and Paperchase sell eco-friendly wrapping papers.

You will pay a little bit more for this gift wrap compared to cheaper papers however,

A cheaper option, is to buy plain kraft brown wrapping paper and print your own. You can pick this up in craft shops such as Hobbycraft, The Range or B&M.

In fact, you can often buy much longer rolls than you would get in traditional wrapping paper. It’s thicker so you may end up using less of it. You can also use it for other occasions too, so you’re not limited to only wrapping Christmas presents.

Therefore, it works out to be a cost-effective option in the long run.

Potato printing your own DIY wrapping paper

Potato printing is fun and easy to do for all ages.

The easiest way to cut your shapes is to use a cookie cutter rather than carving your potatoes directly.

  • Cut your potato in half so that the largest part of the potato is your stamp.
  • Press your cookie cutter firmly into the potato half so that you can see your shape, but don’t go through the potato completely.
  • Using a sharp knife, cut a slice around the edges of the potato up to the cookie-cutter shape and remove any surrounding potato.
potato printing

This will mean that the rounded edge of the potato is where you can hold your stamp.

  • Press your potato stamp onto some kitchen roll to remove any excess starch, and your stamp is ready to go.
  • Prepare a shallow dish of poster paint in your preferred colour, or an ink stamp pad.
  • Lay your craft paper out along a spacious surface e.g. a kitchen table or floor, and attach it using tape or weights to keep it flat.
  • Get stamping in whatever pattern you like! Once you’ve completed your paper, leave it to dry before rolling it up, or wrapping your presents.
handmade gift wrap

If you can’t find any craft wrapping paper, any paper that is recyclable will also work. It might not be suitable for larger presents, and be a little harder to wrap with though. It should however, be fine for gift wrapping smaller presents.

This is the easiest and cheapest way to create your own DIY gift wrap. It will not only wow your loved ones, and keep the kids busy, but is also kinder to the planet than shop bought wrapping paper.

Why stop at paper though? You can easily decorate your own paper bags and boxes too.