‘Tis the season to get crafty! The holiday season is the perfect time to get creative, whether it’s with decorating, baking, hand-making gifts, or even just hand-wrapping them with a new spin. For bookworms, it’s also a great time to show your love of the written word and do something with those books you are waiting to upcycle. Whether you are trying to add a subtle literary touch or go all-out for a specific series, we’ve got the perfect alternative wrapping ideas for you.
For the Simplest Bookworm
For those who aren’t craft-inclined, why not wrap your gifts in paper printed with bookish images? It’s a simple way to share your love of books, and it’s near impossible to mess it up if you aren’t the greatest with making things yourself.
Top gifts off with the usual festive bows and ribbons, and you’ve got a gorgeous (and bookish) gift with the bare minimum of effort. The Literary Gift Company has a wide selection of options, from bookshelves to black and white piles of books, to a fun print that reads “It Might Be a Book!”
Etsy also has (as always) some amazing options that also help you support small businesses this holiday season. We love these sheets of Alice in Wonderland print paper. Spoonflower is another great option, with options like this sheet of open novels or this amazing option covered in Shakespearean insults.
For A Little Extra on Top
If you already have the wrapping paper but want to add a little bookish twist to the gift, why not use bows, flowers, and toppers to make classic Christmas wrapping feel a little more bookish?
This post by craft blogger Older and Wisor includes a whole range of simple ways to use non-traditional paper to wrap and top gifts. We especially love her paper poinsettias and “firework” made out of newspaper. These are a fantastic idea to add a little bookish charm if you love the look… but can’t bear to cut an actual book into pieces.
If you want to go for a more traditional gift bow, you can buy this set from Manda Mo Designs that uses upcycled books to create bows and tags. Choose from either dictionary pages or Harry Potter, or skip the bows and pick up one of her gift bags made from book pages. Or, if you have some upcycle-worthy tomes at home, make your own with a tutorial from Dukes and Duchesses.
For a surprisingly simple yet striking hand-made bow, check out this tutorial from Blah to Ta Da – just draw a 2D bow onto a book page, cut it out, and add it to the gift for a cartoonishly cute wrapping idea.
For Knowing Whose Is Whose
Probably the easiest way to add a little bookishness to the pile under your tree with a minimum of effort. We love upcycled tags!
Another great idea from Older And Wisor uses letter templates instead of writing the recipient’s name on a tag – a fantastic idea unless you have multiple family members with the same initial! Cut out the initial on thin cardboard, and then paste a book page to the front, and ink the edges for a more distressed look. You can use this same technique with more traditionally shaped tags as well, or just cut the letters out of a page and glue it directly to the gift wrap.
For The Extra-Mile Fan
For those who want to go all-out, but don’t have the time (or talent) to start crafting elaborate decorations, there are some fantastic ways to put in extra effort – without having to put in too much effort!
This tutorial from Sophie At Home uses a single book page and a ribbon over traditional wrapping paper for an effect that is absolutely stunning – and looks much more difficult than it actually is. A similar idea from The Midnight Garden goes one step further, adding a page from a carefully chosen book, and a charm that matches the content.
If you are giving a book, there are even more options to make it special. The Paper Package has a great tutorial for those who want to make books an even better gift (we didn’t think that was possible!). Add a bookmark and bookplate for a little extra, and then top off the wrapping with a favorite quote from the book itself. Not great for those gifts that will be under the tree for a long time, but if you are giving something to be opened right away, this is a beautiful way to wrap a book.
For The Craft-Lover
For some craft-experts, all of the ideas so far might seem a little bit too easy – in which case, we’ve got a couple advanced crafter ideas for you!
Elizabeth Jones Designs shows us how to create a stunning wreath-design on top of a parcel, using rolled book pages. This is definitely one for those who love monochrome at Christmas, although it would work with other colors as well.
For something that looks incredibly luxurious, add gold foil to your gift wrap – not only does it look incredible (and expensive), but the gold will reflect the lights on the Christmas tree for a truly magical effect. This tutorial by Lia Griffith makes these beautiful feathers simple.
For The Superfan
Sometimes it’s not just books in general that make you merry and bright, but one particular author, novel, or series that is inspiration for the holiday season.
Harry Potter fans have a lot of options, but our favorite are these Owl Post gift boxes from Etsy. Each box comes with ‘shipping’ labels to allow you to choose your owl, and twine to tie it all together. Adorable!
Finally, what would Christmas be without a classic? For Austen fans, Artful Affirmations has a beautiful post on creating the perfect Christmas. We love these beautiful presents, created with the help of an ‘Austen’ font and a cameo stamp.