Tiny Trash Can zero waste gift wrapping ideas

Zero waste gift wrapping

To avoid filling up trash and recycling bins this holiday season, here are the four ways I’ll be wrapping gifts. Simple, inexpensive and eco-friendly! 😊💚🌎


When I receive a nice bag, I always keep it for reuse later. If it has a logo or motif I don’t like, I cover it up with an old holiday card. (Does anyone else keep used holiday cards for decorating purposes?! 😜) I try to make gift bags so pretty that no one will want to throw them away! 😆


I was gifted these cute cardboard boxes and have been reusing them for years. My son and I like them so much, we only use them for gifts to each other 🤗 They open easily and are really durable. If you have plain boxes, you can dress them up with a homemade ornament, a pine cone and string, or a used holiday card. No tape or ribbon needed 😉


I bought these decorative tins at the thrift store for 50¢ each. They’ll be perfect for gifting homemade gingerbread cookies to neighbors and friends this year 😋 As my son pointed out, they’d make great containers for other gifts, too (he was disappointed to find out I wasn’t putting his presents in them!) These tins should last a long time, but when they’re no longer usable, they’re easily recyclable.


My son and I took a Furoshiki workshop earlier this month and fell in love with the Japanese wrapping technique. Using a square piece of thin fabric, we can wrap just about any shaped gift! Inspired, I scoured my neighborhood thrift stores for square scarves and bought this one for $2.25. It’s a rectangle but folds in half to form a perfect square 👍 The best part? When it’s not being used as gift wrapping material, I can wear it! 😁 Other fabric around the house that can be used for gift wrapping include pillowcases, cloth napkins, tea towels, etc.

If you still want to use wrapping paper, consider using brown Kraft paper or buying recyclable gift wrap at your local thrift shop (I saw lots of rolls while I was shopping for scarves). To hold everything together, use natural twine (compostable) or rubber bands (reusable) instead of tape (plastic).

Happy gift wrapping!

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