Gift wrapping tips: fashionable and functional ways to make packages extra special - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

Gift wrapping tips: fashionable and functional ways to make packages extra special

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(ARA) - The warm weather seasons are well stocked with special occasions. Whether you're saying best wishes at a friend's wedding or offering congratulations to a recent grad, it's easy to make your gift the brightest in the pile. Follow these simple tips to inspire your imagination and you'll create gift wrapping that's as special and personal as the present inside.

Add flair with unexpected wrapping materials
Ribbons don't actually have to be made of ribbon. Go above and beyond traditional wrapping paper and bows by using non-traditional materials to wrap your gift. Delight the fashionistas in your life by using fun, colorful belts to keep boxes secure (and sneak them an extra accessory too). When giving cookware, wrap the package in new kitchen towels. For a going away party, wrap the gift in maps or images of the recipient's destination. Attending a high school graduation party? Stick the gift box shut with a fun bumper sticker from the grad's soon-to-be college or university. Make bows out of raffia, use leftover wallpaper instead of wrapping paper, or tie a scarf around the handles of a gift bag to add something extra special to your present.

Choose an alternative to clear tape
Amp up the style of your gift with printed packaging tape. A fun substitute for traditional clear tape, EZ Start Packaging Tape from Duck brand is available in nine decorative, trendy patterns - everything from funky Black Olives in lime green and pink to Midnight Paisley in sophisticated black and white - that are perfect for keeping wrapping paper in place while also adding an unexpected touch to gifts. Add the Pink Zebra print over solid wrapping paper to delight any birthday girl, or gear your gift for guys with the Graffiti Skulls pattern.

Create a one-of-a-kind container
Forego wrapping paper entirely and decorate the box itself. Create a unique design using stickers, stencil a monogram or pattern on the top, or decoupage it with images that remind you of the recipient. EZ Start Packaging Tape can also help makeover your gift package - completely cover the box in the tape, or use it to create stripes, chevron, checks or other patterns. To make the gift extra special, choose an unexpected item or shape to hold your present. Buckets, hat boxes, or (new) take-out containers can make for interesting packages. And, once it's been personalized, the container itself serves as an added element of the gift.

Look to the occasion for inspiration
Theme your gift wrapping around the special occasion or holiday that you're celebrating. Bridal shower? Use wedding traditions to inspire your wrapping - make sure it includes something borrowed (perhaps a beautiful pin to tie the ribbon), something blue (tissue paper), something old (include a photo of you and the bride on the box) and something new (the gift). On birthdays, be inspired by the recipient's age - on a twelfth birthday, divide the gift into twelve small items, or wrap the present in an item that represents that number, like pages from a calendar. At graduations, wrap the package in the colors of the grad's new college or university.

Make shipped items special
Even when loved ones are far away, it's simple to make the outside of their package special and personal. Besides helping to glamorize gift wrapping or boxes, EZ Start Packaging Tape is also perfect for its original use: shipping items to loved ones away from home. Use the Camo pattern to send a gift to a friend or family member away in the military, or inspire some relaxation in stressed-out college students with a care package wrapped with the Tie-Dye or Green Peace tape patterns. It will make the package stand out and keep items safely secured.

Whether you're a gift-wrapping pro or just learning to tie a ribbon, these easy tips will help you to give stylishly wrapped gifts for all of your special occasions. Pick up a few materials and let your imagination go - the present and the wrapping are sure to doubly delight your next gift recipient.

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