You may not be aware, but traditional wrapping paper often can’t be recycled. Isn’t that insane!? Yet we use it every single year without a second thought. I think the element of surprise is wonderful, but we certainly need to start being more aware of how much disposable products we use. Especially at this time of the year! Almost all wrapping paper ends up in a landfill, but this can be easily avoided. So, I’m waving goodbye to the single-use option this year. If you want to do the same, here are some suitable alternatives to traditional wrapping paper.

Finding Alternatives to Traditional Wrapping Paper

It’s probably not a shock to anyone that I’m very conscious of the environment. I understand that trends are far too easy to follow. However, I believe you needn’t compromise your carbon footprint to take part in popular activities. These are four alternatives to traditional wrapping paper that I have come across and considered. However, there may be even more options out there.

Brown Paper

You may have seen this all over Facebook, but if not, brown paper is a great choice. Why? Because it’s completely recyclable! It may seem like a boring choice, but use it as the base for beautiful strings and bows. You needn’t opt for plastic bows either. Check out this easy how-to by Lia Griffith.

Recycled wrapping paper

If you have a slightly bigger budget to work with, then you could consider recycled wrapping paper. Though this won’t be my main option, my niece loves ripping presents open. I’ll order one roll just for her until she grows out of it! Re-wrapped offers a wonderful selection of patterns and colours to choose from. It’s definitely worth checking out if you still want to follow the paper route.


No, I’m not talking about the woolly one’s you wrap around your neck! This year, I have collected a range of silky patterned scarves to wrap around my gifts. What I love about this choice is that each pattern and print will differ. I can then assign a scarf to the person I think it suits the most. Each gift receiver can choose whether they want to keep the scarf or not. If they don’t, I can use it again for future events!

4 alternatives to traditional wrapping paper

If you want to choose this path, then I have found that they’re not as cheap as you’d expect. I bought my first scarf in a charity shop for £1.50, but the rest ranged between £2-£6. however, you could save quite a bit of money if you have a hunt around kilo sales. Due to how lightweight they are, you could grab as many as you need for no more than £5. These often occur on certain dates in specific locations, so it’s best to check out their websites to find out the next one near you. Preloved Kilo has a few coming up in December if you’re based in the North.

If this isn’t an option, you could try and haggle at your local charity shop to see if they will bring the price down. Just remember, even if it seems pricey, this option comes with years of reusability!

Large materials

This was going to be a backup option if I couldn’t find myself a big selection of scarves. Have a hunt round charity shops, eBay, or any other form of a second-hand shop for materials. This could be old duvets, tablecloths, thin curtains and more. You can then cut these into squares of different sizes, ensuring all your wrapping matches. You could find some wonderful Christmas patterns too! To prevent fraying, a simple thin coat of clear nail varnish around the edges will do. I think this would probably be cheaper than patterned scarves, but I think this comes down to personal preference.

What will you use this Christmas?

These are just 4 alternatives to traditional wrapping paper, but there could be more. Whatever you choose, remember to consider the environmental factors of the choices you make. After all, you want a merry Christmas, not a wasteful one. Let me know in the comments how you choose to wrap your gifts this year!

LaceyFitspo xx


  1. So many good ideas! I absolutely love the scarf ones – definitely trying to limit the amount of wrapping paper I use this year xxx

    • Lacey

      It’s always good to make limits. Sometimes people get into better habits if they reduce than if they simply try to stop altogether!

  2. Pingback: How to have a Zero-Waste Christmas - LaceyFitspo

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