Faced with a stack of unwrapped gifts? We've found a fun solution to last-minute, late-night wrap-a-thons -- a party! The plan: Invite friends to bring their undone presents and a few rolls of their favorite gift wrap to your house. Then supply awesome food that won't dirty up your hard work. At the end of the day, everyone leaves with full tummies, pretty presents and one more chore happily checked off their lists.
tips + how-tos
gift-wrapping tips + extras
1. Wrapping Paper
3. Double-sided tape
4. Labels and gift tags
5. Ribbons and bows
6. Markers and pens
7. Mailing supplies
PICK THE RIGHT PAPER
Use the lines on geometric gift wrap to accurately "measure" the amount of paper you'll need. The edges of the wrap should only overlap by about 2 inches.
Place the present upside down on the paper -- especially on printed ones -- so the seam ends up on the bottom of the box.
Thicker stocks are harder to fold around edges. Create a more pronounced crease by running the edge of a ruler along the fold lines.
Saturated papers make basic tape look obvious. Hide your sticky secrets by using double-sided tape.
Solid-colored papers are perfect blank slates for bold and graphic ribbons.
Don't worry about patterns clashing at the folds. Graphic images look even cooler when they're not aligned.
PICK THE RIGHT RIBBON
Keep this wrinkle-prone ribbon smooth by storing it on spools (or even rolled-up newspaper). Pair with solid-colored gift wraps so its texture really stands out.
This light, glossy ribbon has just enough stiffness to tie easily, making it the gold standard for bows.
Wire-lined ribbon is moldable and holds its shape. Use it to make big bows for large packages or kids' presents.
Sheer and often iridescent, this lightweight ribbon is perfect for decorating small boxes (wrapped in solid-colored paper) or embellishing gift cards and holiday invitations.
This can be used just about anywhere (and it's sturdy enough to hang a holiday wreath!).
MASTERS OF DISGUISE
The problem with wrapping a wine bottle? The recipient will pretty much know he's getting a wine bottle! But not if you use these tricks for hard-to-wrap gifts, from Alanna Sweeney and Kareen Matadeen, gift-wrapping experts at New York's Kate's Paperie.
Turn a putter into a flower -- just tape a large paper bloom to the wrapped club.
Make it look like an ornament: Gather soft gift wrap or tissue paper around the ball (aligning the natural pleats) and make a loop from gold wire ribbon for the hanger.
Use a candy wrap: Put bubble wrap around the present, gift wrap, then tie the ends. Use the same method to make a candy cane shape -- simply add more bubble wrap to the curved end.
IT'S (NOT) A WRAP!
Pretty packages are all well and good, but you gotta draw the line somewhere.
The envelope is a dead giveaway. Just get to the good stuff.
No one's wrap skills are sharp enough to disguise a bike. Slap on a bow and call it a day.
You worked too hard in the kitchen to hide that famous peanut butter fudge. (Oh, you bought it? Well, even still.)
You already wrapped those tchotchkes -- in the stocking.
We've got the perfect tunes for your wrap session.
1. Barry Louis Polisar - All I Want Is You
2. My Morning Jacket - Thank You Too!
3. The Smiths - Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want
4. Sons & Daughters - This Gift
5. The Fratellis - For the Girl
6. The Strokes - Is This It?
7. The Temptations - Ain't Too Proud to Beg
8. The Killers - My List
9. Peter Bjorn and John - Objects of My Affection
10. Rufus Wainwright - Pretty Things
11. She & Him - Take It Back
12. Tim McGraw - I Like It, I Love It