Back to articles It's a Wrap - Streamline Your Holiday Wrapping

Categories: Organizing

Wrapping gifts for the holidays? Repeat after us: "This year, I won't be wrapping gifts at midnight on Christmas Eve!"
If there's a single most-underestimated holiday chore, it's gift wrapping. Supplies lie scattered throughout the house, while space and privacy are hard to come by. Translation: late-night Christmas Eve wrapping sessions.

Not this year! To lick the wrapping problem at the outset, set up a wrap and mail activity center: a dedicated space for wrapping gifts and preparing packages for mailing. With workspace, tools and supplies at hand, it's easy to wrap as you go-and enjoy the task, without grump, grumble or hurry. Having all gift wrap, tools and supplies in one place speeds gift wrapping and makes mailing easy. Follow these steps to set up a Gift Wrap and Mail Centre:

First, find last year's gift wrap. Did you stock up on half-price wrap, bows and ribbons in last January's post-holiday sales? Wonderful! Dig it all out from boxes, closets, drawers or attic. Time to see what you have, and what you need. Will you need to refresh stocks of gift wrap, gift bags, ribbons or bows?

Tool check! Make sure you have scissors and pens. Like cellophane tape, these gift wrapping necessities often go astray during wrapping season, so have a good supply before you begin.

Find a place for your wrap and mail activity center. Look for a room of your own with a lock upon the door: a bedroom, office, utility room or large bathroom that will allow you to wrap in peace and privacy. But, even the corner of the furnace room will work, outfitted with a table, giving you lots of room to spread out. Those in small homes can make use of a spare bedroom, just place a large sheet of poster board or plywood on the bed before hauling out the supplies. Even an ironing board will work in a pinch.

Tangled ribbon got you frustrated? Repurpose your paper-towel holder with stacking ribbon spools for easy access.

While gift-wrap holders are available at local retailers, a large trash bin works just as well for holding paper upright. Use a thin elastic band to keep opened paper on its roll.

No room for storing wrapped gifts and the tree isn't up yet? Wrap, affix the gift tag and stack under your table. Save the bows and embellishments for later.

Santa may have a whole workshop, and 364 days to prepare, but you don't! While few of us have the luxury of a gift-wrapping room year round, finding the space, however primitive, during the holiday gift-wrapping rush is a must! Thanks to the always-organized Mrs. Claus for sharing her wrapping tips with us. (who did you think did all that wrapping?!)

Kim & Sandra