Sunday, 18 November 2012

How To Make Homemade Christmas Gift Wrap with the Children

Christmas is coming!  Our bank accounts are ready to be hit hard by the festive season and everything it entails and we are about to have to find those extra hours in the day to fit in all the extra things that need to be done.  So it is nice to find ways of saving time and money on those essential Christmas jobs like wrapping up presents!

This year, I have enlisted the help of my children to make homemade wrapping paper which will make our gifts look really special.  Not only will this provide a cost effective alternative to premium shop bought paper, it is also a really fun activity for the kids to do.  It also involves them in the Christmas preparations and makes something that loved ones will really appreciate.

To make the job of wrapping up easier, it is helpful to get some good tools of the trade.  Scotch Pop-Up Tape Handband is a great hands-free gadget which allows you to grab pre-cut strips of tape eliminating the need to wrestle a roll of tape, losing the end and getting in a sticky mess!  It is suitable for both left and right handers, leaving both hands free to wrap.  It is available in pink, blue or silver for £2.49 from leading stationery stores and supermarkets and includes a pad of 75 tape strips.  Refils of three pads cost £2.69.  It is a godsend for wrapping up gifts at Christmas!

Scotch, tape, wrapping up

A good sharp pair of scissors that glide through the paper is a must.  We have Scotch Precision Scissors which are great for cutting through paper cleanly.  It definitely saves time to use the best tools for the job, especially when faced with a mountain of gifts to wrap.

Scotch, Christmas
Tools of The Trade

How To Make Fingerprint Robin Gift Wrap

You need:
Plain Paper
Poster Paint: brown, red, black, yellow
Black Felt Tip
Paint Brush

  • First you'll need some plain paper to fit the gift you are wrapping.  Plain white, brown or coloured paper is fine.  For some small gifts such as a CD, a sheet of A4 paper will be a perfect fit.
  • Using brown poster paint, get your children to make thumbprints randomly on to the paper.
  • Top each thumbprint with a index finger print to make a head.
  • Make a red breast using a fingerprint of red paint.
  • When dried, cut out a cardboard stamp to print a brown tail on each robin.
  • Cut another cardboard stamp to make two yellow legs on each robin.
  • Using the end of a paintbrush, make black dots for eyes.
  • Draw on a beak using a felt pen.

(Tip: You can use the same technique to make gift tags using self-adhesive stickers or on tags cut out from a cereal box or old greetings card.  You could make Christmas cards, place settings, calendars and decorative thank you letters using the same method.)

If you are not a fan of robins, you could make Penguins instead with a black fingerprint body and head, white fingerprint belly and painted on feet and a beak in yellow and eyes in white and black.

Fingerprint Penguin

When the wrapping paper is all dry you can use it to wrap up a special present for a loved one.  You don't need to spend a fortune on buying bows to decorate the present either.  Cheap Christmas ribbon can be used to make a gorgeous mass of curls on top of the gift.  Simply wrap it around the gift and tie off the bow.  Make the bow loops the same length as the loose ends, then snip them to make them six ribbons which can then be curled using the back of a pair of scissors.  It makes a very attractive decoration and is very easy to do and costs just pennies. (Tip:  I always buy things like ribbon in the January sales and put them away for the following Christmas.  It saves a fortune!)

Christmas, decorating, gift wrapping
Curled Ribbon Bow

I really enjoy doing Christmas crafts with my children and love how this activity saves me money and makes unique and very special wrapping paper, tags and other essentials that will be really appreciated on Christmas day.  

This video shows you exactly how it's all done!

This post has been sponsored by 3M Scotch but it is an activity I would have done anyway!


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