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How to Wrap Christmas Packages

Nov 24, 2007
It isn't magic! Wrapping a gift so that it is handsome, tasteful, and secure really isn't a trick at all, though it takes a little practice at the beginning. The basic procedures which follow are simple and foolproof.

One helpful tip is to keep all your wrapping materials together, throughout the year. Have a drawer or shelf or box that's handy, and stow them away. Get together a supply of paper, ribbons, tape, tissue, and gift cards (plus a pair of scissors that's attached to a long string, perhaps, so that it stays put and doesn't wander off on a dozen other errands). In addition, collect trimmings: fake flowers, a broken string of dime-store pearls, feathers, odds and ends of notions. You'll be surprised at the way they can spark up a gift wrapping.

That professional look which some packages have when we open them often lies in the fresh crispness of their tissue. All your gifts can have this look if you line the box with tissue in the following manner. Pleat each of two sheets of paper through the center: one to fit the length of the box and extend beyond it at each end, the other to fit the width.

Fit one sheet into the box, and lay the other across it, allowing the ends to extend equally on both sides.

Now add the gift. If it is fragile, or is to be mailed, gather extra sheets of tissue lengthwise and place them around the object, to keep it from shifting. Finish by folding the extended tissue inside. Write a card with your name, place it on top, and close the box.

Try these ideas with tissue.

At each end, the paper should measure three-quarters of the box's depth

Line the box in a color to match the contents, or the color of the outer wrapping paper. Tissue is available in pastels and in red, green, and bright blue.

Use tissue that is dusted with sparkle in confetti colors, or in gold or silver.

Sprinkle sachet into the surrounding tissue on gifts of lingerie, hosiery, or gloves, for a personal, feminine touch.

Paste on bright stars or colorful seals.

Fringe or cut with pinking shears the tissue edges in lining boxes for smaller gifts.

Now for the outer wrapping.

Measure the wrapping paper and cut it to fit the box.

Measure the paper around the box, allowing about an inch for overlap. Fold back excess, and cut off.

Measure the paper up three-quarters of the box's depth at each end, and cut off excess.

Seal paper at the box's edge with cellophane tape. Tape may be concealed by overlapping the ends of a small piece of tape, then folding, keeping the sticky side out. Place the tape between the edges to be sealed, and press them together firmly.

Tuck in paper at each end of the box, crease sharply, add tape (concealed in the same way as above), and press the end flaps against the box.

To wrap a cylinder shape, trace the ends of the cylinder on the wrapping paper and cut out two circles. After the overlap is pleated, spread paste on the edges of the circles and attach one to each end of the cylinder.

To wrap a circular box, measure and cut the wrapping paper as for a rectangular one. Place the box on its side and roll the paper around it. Seal the paper with cellophane tape.

The easiest way to wrap round gifts is to use the shape, rather than disguising it. Cover with paper, securing the overlap with tape. Don't tuck the paper ends in; tie them off with ribbon and cut them to make a spaghetti fringe.

Now your gifts can look almost as attractive wrapped up as they are on the inside!
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