The holidays can be a stressful time. There is so much to do and so little time in which to do. The key to minimizing the tension is planning ahead. And one of the biggest and most important tasks is wrapping all the presents.
If you have a few family members, you know that wrapping all those gifts can be quite a formidable enterprise to organize. It’s even more difficult if the gifts need to be kept secret. A brilliant solution is setting up a temporary wrapping room in your home, so today we’re offering you tips to do just that.
Why you need a wrapping room
So, why do you need a wrapping room?
Often, people simply cram the task into one corner of their house or consign it to their dining table. But these aren’t necessarily the best options available. There can be significant benefits to creating a wrapping room.
First, as any crafter can warn you, these types of activities can easily can get messy. And the mess can, and usually will, spread exponentially. Therefore, it would be wonderful if you could keep it all contained.
Second, the task will be more enjoyable and more hassle-free if you keep all your supplies in one place. That way, you won’t have to run around every time you need a piece of tape.
Third, a designated wrapping room can make the whole process easier to coordinate, particularly if you have children and other family members who want to wrap their own contributions.
Finally, assigning a single room for wrapping could actually take your wrapping game to the next level. Being organized can lead to a boost in your creativity.
Best rooms to convert into a wrapping station
Before you can do anything else, you need to decide where to place your wrapping room. Preferably, you want to use a space that is a bit out of the way, has a door that can close, and has enough space for both storage and work.
Generally, the ideal place would be a spare bedroom in your mobile home. That should provide enough space. Plus, you can move all the furniture out of the way to make some room.
Alternatively, you can use your mobile home office. Or, if you are fortunate, you will already have a dedicated crafting room you can use.
Typically, you don’t need to take up an entire room. But if you have a place where you can close the door, that does help to keep the gifts secret.
Everything you need to set up a wrapping room
Now, let’s look at all the different aspects you need to complete your setup.
First, you have to set up your wrapping station. This will be where you do most of the work.
Most of us have probably tried using a bed as a surface to cut wrapping paper on. But if you have, you know how tricky this can be. One slip of the scissors, and you’ve accidentally cut a hole in your brand new bedding.
So it’s better for everyone involved if you put a desk in the room to provide a surface to work on. Even better, if you already have a customized crafting desk, that will be a great option.
Otherwise, you can use any piece of furniture with a flat, solid top. For example, a chest of drawers or even a large nightstand can do the job.
One of our favorite solutions is using a kitchen cart or island like one of these by IKEA. Aside from the work surface, they come with ready-made shelving on which you can store wrapping supplies.
You can always use the furniture that you already own. But if you regularly wrap gifts or do crafts, getting a dedicated table will be a good investment.
Replenish your stores
Next, you should replenish your stores. More likely than not, you don’t have all the supplies you need, especially not specifically Christmas-y ones. Before you do this, however, we recommend that you clean and declutter first.
Get rid of anything that you can’t or don’t want to use anymore – like paper that has been damaged or is seriously outdated.
Once you’ve done this, you should stock up with everything you need to wrap gifts from start to finish. This might include the following:
- Rolls of wrapping paper
- Different colored tissue paper
- Variety of ribbons
- An assortment of gift bags (long, short, small, medium, large)
- Rolls of wrapping paper
- Ruler (to help you cut straight lines)
- Hole punch
- Pens and pencils
- Optional: stamps
- Optional: glitter and other decorations
You don’t want to run out of supplies the day before Christmas. Instead, err on the side of buying too much of everything rather than too little. Remember that you can always reuse supplies next year. And depending on the type of paper you select, you can use it for birthdays and other occasions too.
In general, you want to get supplies that will coordinate well with each other. This doesn’t mean wrapping supplies can’t still look exciting and interesting. But consider choosing color schemes, themes, and items that will complement each other.
Types of wrapping paper
Of course, everyone has their own tastes and preferences. In the end, this means it can be a bit of a challenge if you are doing the shopping and planning for everyone in your household. That’s why you should get a collection of wrapping paper.
The top pick for 2019 is undoubtedly brown paper. It is more eco-friendly than regular wrapping because you can recycle it. Plus, it still looks fantastic. And it can give you the chance to get super creative.
Alternatively, check out these gift wrap trends:
- Fabric such as scarves
- Humourous themes like pirate snowmen
- Prints with cartoon animals like llamas or cats
- Anything with a bit of glitter
- Gold motifs
- Brown paper with print on it
- Reused newspaper or maps
In short, this year is all about letting your creativity and personality shine.
One big question when creating any wrapping room or station is where to put all the supplies. You want a system that is neat and organized yet also accessible. People shouldn’t have to rummage through everything to find the roll of tape.
One relatively effortless solution is to place and organize all the supplies in drawers. It’s a great solution if you already have an empty chest of drawers available or a desk with extra fixtures.
But, if you do this, make sure that you get drawer organizers to keep the supplies separated and neat. You can arrange them by color or size, as well as by the type of item.
What can you do if you want a more mobile system that you can move around and put away?
In this case, you can create a customized wrapping cart. For this, you can use any wire shopping basket or bag that you can pull around on wheels.
You can use the cart in the following ways:
- Place the rolls of paper standing upright in the container.
- Put a smaller bucket or bin on the floor of the container for tissue paper.
- Attach a dowel rod over which you can place spools of ribbon.
- Hook a smaller wire basket over the side for other supplies.
- Clip a retractable key holder to the side or to the handles for your scissors.
Our inspiration for this is Nourish and Nestle’s wrapping cart.
Don’t overlook the usefulness of a simple, everyday trash can. They aren’t only good for cleaning up. You can buy any type of bin to store your wrapping paper rolls. This will keep them neat, visible, and accessible.
Tension or dowel rods can be a great resource for any crafter or crafting project. Depending on the type, you can place them in your cupboard, on your bookshelf, and in other areas. Get the most out of them by stacking several of them on top of each other.
Generally, you can use the rods for a range of supplies. They work best for rolls of wrapping paper and spools of ribbon or twine. Afterward, you can reuse the dowels for new projects.
Best of all, these products are cheap and don’t take up much space.
In case you are low on horizontal space, you might want to take advantage of the vertical space in your room. One way to do this is by installing a pegboard. Once again, this can be incredibly useful for any craft.
You can hang the board on any open wall space. But to save yourself some walking, you can mount it above your desk or work surface.
Have some fun experimenting with different kinds of attachments like hooks, baskets, and pegs. If you play around, you should be able to store most or all of your supplies in this way.
Pro tip: Don’t leave the board as-is. Dress it up by painting the surface to complement the decor in the room. These small touches can help to make the experience more enjoyable.
An excellent benefit of using a wrapping room is that it can give everyone the chance to wrap their gifts in peace and privacy. You won’t have to worry as much about anyone barging in and ruining the surprise.
To keep the mystery going even longer, it can help to work out a bit of a schedule. Agree with one another who is going to wrap their presents when.
Try to make it a bit more fun by hanging a customized “Occupied” or “Do not enter” sign on the outside of the door. Check out this one from Crafting in The Rain.
Hiding the presents
One more thing that you can incorporate into your wrapping room is a place to hide the presents. Each family has its traditions and ways of doing things. But creating hiding spots can be convenient for gifts that still need to be wrapped or for those that are too obvious even after being wrapped.
Overall, one of the best solutions is to hide the presents in pieces of luggage. Suitcases have tons of space and aren’t the first place your children are going to go snooping. Plus, if you always store your bags in the spare room, it will be even less conspicuous.
On the other hand, you can also pop the gifts under the bed. Or behind or underneath some spare linens you have in the closet.
You can also place them in cardboard moving or storage boxes and tape them up. Or bury them in box of papers labeled “documents” on the side – to ward of snoopers.
Wrap it up! Clean up afterward
Packing up all the holiday goodies doesn’t have to be a challenge if you plan ways to make the task easier and quicker. As we’ve said, this is one reason why a wrapping room can be such a good idea. Keep the end goal in mind while you’re busy setting up the wrapping area – you want to create a space that makes the job easier and more enjoyable. And here are the top tips for a smooth clean up afterward:
- Pick a room with a wood or tile floor. Doing this will mean that you can quickly sweep or vacuum up any mess.
- Put out three bins: one for trash, a second for recycling, and a third for all the scraps you can potentially rescue.
- Encourage everyone to clean up after themselves once they’re done the wrapping.
On top of this, you should plan how you’re going to store or put away all the supplies for next time. Leaving them lying around is practically an invitation for a mess. If you want to, you can continue using the storage solutions that you’ve already figured out.
However, if you want to clear the space, you could place all of your supplies in a clear plastic container with a lid. This way, they will be safe and out from underneath your feet.
Bring it home
For many families, gift giving is a central part of their Christmas celebrations. The presents don’t always have to be extravagant and expensive. It’s the thought that counts and the care and love you put into each one.
That’s why it’s such a good idea to wrap the gifts yourself in your very own wrapping room.