Winter Wildlife: Colourful Present Wraps

Everyone likes to experience the surprise of opening a gift from a loved one. Over the holiday period the United Kingdom alone throws away enough wrapping paper to reach the moon! That’s a lot of gift-giving but also a lot of waste.

Two gifts sit on a wooden surface. One is open and sat on a square of fabric, the other is wrapped in fabric
katorisi, CC BY 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Last year we shared how you can create recyclable festival wrapping paper at home to help save on landfill waste. This year, we’re going one step further and spotlighting a Japanese wrapping technique called furoshiki. Wrapping presents in fabric wraps has so many advantages for us and the planet:

  • It extends the life of unwanted fabrics, stopping it going straight to landfill
  • The wraps can be used over and over again, saving us money on new gift wrap
  • Choose from an array of fabrics and really personalise your wrapping
  • This technique requires no tape, preventing even more waste

All you’ll need is a square of fabric large enough to cover your gift. Watch the video below to see how to wrap using the furoshiki technique:

Go one step further by customising your fabric pieces

Just like in the video, you can create your own colours and patterns using natural dyes and a plain fabric. Here’s what you’ll need:

Image showing a white tray on a white table, cups of coloured dye, one cup is being poured over rolled fabric on the tray
  • A square of fabric large enough to cover your gift
  • One or two different colours of inks or dyes to stain your fabric
  • A protected surface or outside space where you can be messy!

The video above gives you a step-by-step guide for dying your own fabrics. Here’s our top tips:

  • Wear gloves if using non-natural dyes as these can stain your hands
  • Sieve the bits out of natural dyes such as the beetroot juice
  • There’s lots of different ways to fold the fabric and create different designs, search for ‘tie dye techniques’ for more ideas

Share your Crafty Creature makes with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. To see your make feature on our Community Gallery, submit it via the form here: Community Gallery Submission Form

Explore more from Winter Wildlife 2021: ZoologiCOOL

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