Christmas is a time of gift-giving (this has issues in itself, with many people increasingly choosing not to buy into the massive buying bonanza). By far, give a nice thoughtful gift, but you don’t have to go mad sending yourself into debt for the rest of the year, just to buy the best designer trainers or iPad. A simple pair of organic socks may do for some people. But whatever you give, use with plastic-free paper tape.
Don’t send plantable cards to homes with pets (due to toxic wildflowers). Read more on keeping pets safe at Christmas.
People in the UK alone use 227,000 miles of gift wrap each year, and anything with glitter or foil can’t be recycled. Most is also wrapped in plastic, and all ends up in landfills, where it never biodegades. If you receive a wrapped gift, always remove and safely bin the sticky tape, before popping in the recycling bin, if possible. Many eco companies these days even allow you to send gifts direct to recipients in reusable or ‘naked packaging’ to avoid gift wrap. Or choose one of the nice fabric reusable gift bags in stores.
recycled paper Christmas gift wrap
Most Christmas gift wrap is made with virgin paper, and sometimes coated with plastic glitter and then wrapped in plastic. This causes havoc, as it can’t be recycled, so refuse workers have their work cut out on the week afte Boxing Day. Instead, choose gift wrap that is made from recycled paper, and easy to recycle.
This eco gift wrap with matching tags is created using plant-based eco-friendly inks, and printed onto biodegradable compostable paper, to replace the hundreds of thousands of miles of gift wrap thrown away each year, made with plastic coating and foil, glitter, sparkly bits etc. This stylish alternative is made with unbleached post-consumer waste paper, using unique festive patterns, created by talented designers. There are three designs available:
- Christmas trees
- Christmas stars
- Gingerbread men
Sold in a set of 5 sheets, this is sent in biodegradable kraft paper wrapping, so is completely plastic-free. At end of use you can just recycle the paper, or someone can use it again.
The Danes recycled gift wrap
The Danes offers gorgeous recycled gift wraps, made from various materials, including recycled tissue paper. Some have ‘gold’ designs but can be recycled.
pretty Curlicue gift wrap sets
Curlicue offers a lovely range of beautiful eco gift wrap and paper tape. Everything is made from locally recycled paper and in bespoke designs by indie artists and illustrators. All items are free from plastic coating, foil or glitter and are easily recycled. They are also printed with soy-based inks and this means they wash out easier at recycling, to make it easier to make new items. Everything is made locally for a low carbon footprint, and to help support local business.
reusable Christmas gift wrap
Reusable gift wrap is a great way to wrap gifts, as once you learn how to tie the simple knots, you don’t need tape. Just wrap, gift and then unwrap and give again. The recipients can use it for their own gifts, or for families, you just unwrap, stash in a drawer and use it again.
Battle Green Reusable Gift Wrap is in bright red or green, made with organic cotton. Ethically made in India, these festive gift wraps donate £1 from each sale to a small non-profit that helps care for abandoned, abused and unwanted domestic/farm animals and sick/injured wildlife.