Eco-Friendly Living

How I’m Being Eco-Friendly This Christmas

A tweet about why we should wrap our Christmas gifts in brown paper went viral recently for a very good reason. What may come as a surprise to you, because it was to me, is that traditional wrapping paper isn’t recyclable. Instead, it ends up in landfill. I took pride last year in how pretty my wrapping paper was, but this year now that I know better, pretty wrapping paper isn’t worth it. We’re well on our way to having more plastic in the ocean than fish. I don’t want to contribute towards plastic pollution anymore.

How I’m Being Eco-Friendly This Christmas

1. Sustainable Wrapping Paper

eco-friendly wrapping paper three presents wrapped in colourful paper

I was going to buy brown paper, but found a lot of thin sheets with designs and crepe paper in my room. I have a habit of holding onto these things in case they would make a nice background to a page of my adventure book. A lot of paper from the Disney store, other places, and online piled up. I also had left over ribbons and string from other purchases, so this was a great way to up-cycle things I already own.

2. Upcycled Gift Bags

eco-friendly gift bag, pink floral bag made from packaging

Another innovative idea was making my own gift bag instead of buying one. I kept a few packages from online purchases, for the same reason’s as the paper, because I felt like I would use it for something. A pink floral envelop was just what I needed. Once I cut off the the top and removed my address – which thankfully was only a sheet of paper stuck on with sello tap and not an actual part of the packaging. I was able to cut holes to carry and it was perfect!

It’s Cheaper

This year, I didn’t have to buy new wrapping paper or bags. Being a hoarder worked out in my favour for once! I also saved money from not having to buy new things. Christmas is already a time of over consumption, and capitalism thrives. Little things like this at least lessen the impact, and don’t contribute as much to plastic pollution.

Have a look around your house for what you can use to wrap gifts, and if you can’t find much then get some brown paper and accessorise with ribbons, stamps, and doilies! I don’t shop online as much anymore so if next Christmas I can’t find things to reuse, that’s what I’ll be doing.

It’s also great to find green gifts, like products that come in no packaging, or making something from the heart.

Why Should You Care

A horrifying 227,000 miles of wrapping paper is used and thrown out each year!

Christmas is probably the most environmentally hazardous time of the year with so much overproduction and over-consumption of food and gifts. That’s not even factoring in all the energy that goes into keeping those Christmas lights twinkling. Chirstmas trees themselves are a big hazard from trees being cut down and binned, to people not even reusing their faux tree! Our Christmas tree is older than me and still going strong!

As it’s the season of good will, perhaps consider directing that energy towards the planet and being more eco-friendly.

How are you being eco-friendly this Christmas? Here’s some more ways to be eco-friendly heading into the New Year. You can also check out my more comprehensive guide on having a green Christmas.

Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays!

eco-friendly wrapping brown paper christmas presents

23 thoughts on “How I’m Being Eco-Friendly This Christmas

  1. I’ve been using brown wrapping paper this year as it is just so much better for the environment and I love the look it has too! Thanks for sharing x

  2. Did my comment go through? If it didn’t, I just wanted to say that you’re amazing and this is such a great idea. I think I might try to follow suit.

  3. This was such a great idea! I had no idea so much wrapping paper WASN’T recyclable! That makes me feel terrible! I love how you DIY-ed what you already had! So cute and clever! As for my family, we’re notorious for saving our gift bags to reuse until they wear out and now I’m going to be trying to only buy recyclable wrapping paper from now on- if I even NEED to buy it in the future. Great post and I learned a lot!

    Emily |

  4. These are such awesome ideas. I love the brown paper idea so much. I made a promise to myself a few years ago not to buy any new wrapping paper as I seemed to have accumulated loads. It’s taking me a while to use it all 😭 but I have not bought any new. After I’ve finished it, I’m definitely going down this route 😍 everything looks so lush x

  5. I love that you are using eco-friendly ways to wrap gifts. Furoshiki, the Japanese art of wrapping gifts in fabric is another great alternative.

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you too!

  6. Great tips and ideas. I have found some wrapping paper is recyclable. You definitely need to check the label though before you purchase! I can’t believe that figure of how much is thrown out each year. I might try and save some this year to re-use! xxx

  7. Such great advice and ideas. I had no idea most Christmas wrapping paper wasn’t recyclable. I’m starting my Christmas shopping next week and thanks to reading this post I’m going to try my best to make some more sustainable choices.

    Kate |

  8. This is such an important topic! Like you I didn’t realise until fairly recently that not all gift wrap is recycable. This year I’m looking at the brown paper route, but I love how you’vewrapped yours in crepe paper. I’m sure I have some in my craft box I can use up! 😊

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