Wrapping Paper:  From Thanksgiving to New Years Day, household waste increases by more than 25%. Added food waste, shopping bags, packaging, wrapping paper, bows and ribbons – it all adds up to an additional 1 million tons a week to our landfills. (EPA and Use Less Stuff).  In the U.S., annual trash from gift-wrap and shopping bags totals 4 million tons. (Use Less Stuff).  Half of the paper America consumes is used to wrap and decorate consumer products. (The Recycler’s Handbook)

Ribbon: If every family reused just two feet of holiday ribbon, the 38,000 miles of ribbon saved could tie a bow around the entire planet.

Ways to Reduce our Wrapping Waste:

We have an abundance of clever containers at Arc’s Value Village.  Here are several ideas, a couple of photos and a link to more inspiration. 

Textiles:  Christmas stockings, graphic t-shirts, pieces of fabric, scarves, cloth ribbon, tablecloths, towels, or handkerchiefs.

Hard sided containers:  popcorn or cookie tins, jars of any size lined with a piece of paper to conceal the contents, jewelry boxes, colanders, stock pots, laundry hampers, baskets, crates, small pieces of furniture or luggage, plastic storage bins, cake pans, pails, tackle boxes or fancy gift boxes.


Hollywood Box

Wrap the cover and the box separately for a reusable “Hollywood style” gift wrap.


Grocery Bag Wrap

Who knew a paper grocery bag could look so elegant?

Papers:  Hollywood boxes (see photo), previously used wrapping paper, old maps, the comic section of the newspaper, a cool paper bag (love the bags from Paper Source), holiday shopping totes, sheet music or kids art pieced together.

Gift Tags and Embellishments:  old holiday greeting cards (cut the cover off the card and use the back for your greeting), ornaments, photos, and brooches are all great ways to add a gift tag or embellishment to your gift.

No container at all: hide all the unwrapped presents and then give clues to their discovery.

Please visit our Pinterest site for additional ideas and photos!

If all of us use some of these eco-friendly ideas for some of our gifts, we will have made a measurable contribution to the environment.  Please share your ideas – we’d love to hear from you. What creative ideas have you used to reduce wrapping waste?

Be sure to check out the Merry Thriftmas selection at our stores.  From Dec.15-22, all Merry Thriftmas items will be 50% Off!







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