Recycle Gift Wrap

This year, be sure to recycle your holiday gift wrap and ribbons.  You can up-cycle it by reusing the wrapping paper, gift bags, tissue and ribbons for next year.

If you aren't the crafty type, be sure you collect all the paper, tissue and bows and keep them out of your garbage.

Did you know that between the American Thanksgiving and New Year's, the average American household increases its trash output by 25%, resulting in 5 million extra tons of garbage. But it doesn't have to be a total loss. Most paper can be readily recycled, either through curbside programs or local drop-off centers. The trick is to prepare by having a box or bag ready, so when everyone starts tearing through their presents under the tree in an ecstatic frenzy, you can easily divert the scraps into one convenient location.

Better than third-party recycling is to save wrapping paper, bows and boxes for reuse later. If you have room, you can use them for next year, or possibly even other holidays. Wrapping paper scraps make great packaging or craft material, and ribbons can be used as ties.

Here are some ways to up-cycle your holiday wrapping

1-roll up all the reusable gift wrap paper and store it away until next year.  When it's neatly rolled up, the creases will soften themselves over the next 12 months and you will be encouraged to reuse the paper.  It will not seem like a daunting task to reuse the gift wrap.

2--make envelopes for next year using the gift wrap. 

3--wrap your fragile decorations in the gift wrap instead of bubble wrap.  You are up-cycling and not needing to use any more paper or plastic to protect your lovely items.

4--Use the gift wrap to line drawers in your bedroom.  

5--cover up a box with the gift wrap and store your holiday things to make it look nice on display next year.

6--re-use the ribbon by pairing it with other ribbon or fabric scraps.  Use this to re-gift later in the year.

7--donate your gift wrap and ribbons to a local school or organization looking for craft supplies.  

8--Let your kids go crazy with their drawings on the blank side of the gift wrap.

9--Shred the ripped up gift wrap and let a rip with confetti for new years

10--Use the gift wrap to line pet cages (if you have any).