ELMS: Boring gift wrapping is so last Christmas

I know I told you all last week to go out and do something fun with your family and friends this holiday season instead of buying each other gifts, but I also know the old tradition of exchanging gifts isn’t something that’s going to change. So for those of you still giving your loved ones gifts this season, I’ve come up with some creative ways you can have fun with your presentation.

Here’s to changing up the traditional shiny wrapping paper and bow combo. Happy holidays!


Wrapping presents in newspaper is a classic way to save on wrapping paper. But instead of just grabbing the comics because it is the most colorful section, why not make your choices more personal? If one of your parents works in finance, use the business section to wrap their gift. Similarly, if your best friend is always wearing the latest fashions, then the style section might be a good choice. Get the idea?

And say you’re re-gifting an item to someone who you’re not the biggest fan of – or maybe someone you feel obligated to give a gift to – grab a Marquette Warrior and use that. You wouldn’t want to subject the quality journalism of the Trib to such wear and tear as wrapping paper, would you?


Yes, a shirt. This technique works best with a long-sleeve button-down, but any shirt will likely work, depending on the size of the gift, of course.

Unbutton the shirt and lay it flat. Then place the gift in the middle, button the shirt back up and fold over the top and bottom of the shirt. Tie the two sleeves into a bow over the buttons to finish the project, and you have a gift wonderfully wrapped in something the recipient can reuse.

I suggest making a Value Village run and scooping up some festive button-downs to use. That way, your friend or family member can wear their creative wrapping paper to any holiday party, ugly sweater-themed or not.

Saran Wrap

This prank is most commonly used on a vehicle, but I think it would make Christmas morning a lot of fun. Wrap your presents in layers upon layers of Saran wrap so your friends and family can see what they’re getting, but they just can’t get to it.

Do your best to blend the end of the Saran wrap in with the rest of the wrapping so the recipient either has to search for it or just cut through the Saran wrap altogether to get it off. If you’ve ever had your car Saran wrapped, you know taking it all off is no easy task.

Not only is this a hilarious wrapping technique, it also works on any present, no matter what size or shape it is.

Class Notes

Once finals week is over, there’s no reason to hold onto your old class notes. Rather than crumpling them up in a fit of frustration over the stressful week you’ve just survived, put them to good use and use them to wrap presents. You could try to follow the same method as the newspaper option by using certain subjects for specific friends or family members, but I doubt anyone is going to want to read over your notes after a week full of exams.

The best part about this option is it gives everyone the satisfaction of seeing their class notes torn up. That, and they are rewarded with a gift once they are done. It is the perfect stress-reliever after finals week, and a fun way to reuse your old schoolwork.