How to wrap your Christmas presents without paper (and five other budget wrapping tricks).

Wrapping presents has become a fine art. From customised wrapping paper to artisan ribbon that costs more than than the present itself, there’s a level of expectation and perfection that’s enough to make most of us break into a sweat.

Don’t even get us started on the annual moment you find a present you forgot to wrap up the night before Santa is due… when of course you’ve run out of said fancy wrapping goodies.

Fortunately celebrity party planner Marcy Blum has come with a contingency plan that may just become our go-to Christmas wrapping routine this year – using no paper at all. (Post continues after gallery.)

Not only is it environmentally friendly, it also works perfectly for those awkward-shaped presents that turn wrapping into an origami exercise.

1. Gift wrap.

“It suddenly occurred to me: Why don’t you wrap it in another gift?” she told People.

She advises putting your gift on top of a blanket or throw, folding it over at the sides to secure the items, roll or fold it up then secure with a festive ribbon.


Image: iStock

"I think it’s a fantastic gift for a first apartment or a new home. It’s a way of making it cohesive and still fun," she says.

Plus, the recipient gets two thoughtful presents instead of one.

You can find stylish throws and blankets from places like Kmart from $5, or stock up on decorative scarves from op shops.


Image: Kmart

2. Scrap Magic

For an even cheaper option, try using a piece of fabric - either from scraps or cut off or or from an old item of clothing you no longer wear.

Depending on the gift shape, a square works well - simply place the gift in the centre and use the four corners to tie it up.

3. Old magazines.

If you've got a style-loving friend, fashion shoots or pages from that stack of old magazines you've got lying round work perfectly as wrapping paper, particularly for smaller items.

It looks glossy, colourful, interesting AND it's recyclable. Winner.


Image: iStock

4. Newspaper.

In a similar vein, using newspaper as wrapping paper can look wonderfully nostalgic. You can get creative and personalise or add colour with some string or ribbon.

5. Brown paper.

You can thank Pinterest for bringing this simple look back. No longer plain, brown paper is now a minimalist wrapper's dream. You can either buy a big cheap roll that will last you for ages or put those leftover brown paper bags to good use.


Image: iStock

6. Gift tags.

Run out of gift tags? Aside from cutting your own (literally cut out any shape you like out of paper and simply stick them on), using old playing cards is a great way to improvise while looking like it was your creative intention all along.

Image: iStock.