Gifts, Holidays

Wrapping Gifts Without Tape Using Only String or Ribbon

I pride myself with making the most of what I have. So when Christmas came around and it was time to wrap presents I ran out of tape! Woohoo! What now?!

Dun Duh Duh Duuunnn! (Trumpet sounds) Yarn! Why not? I’ve been crocheting gifts so of course yarn would come to the rescue.  I also used silver dollar store ribbon I had for my small business to wrap cute giveaway bags.

Here’s what I did.

I had a few boxes from the dollar store and put my gifts in them. They came already decorated. This is what I did with the pictured gift. I had others that I wrapped like I normally would with regular wrapping paper and used the string method and they held (though I did forbid anyone to touch gifts under the tree until I could carefully hand them out. This is one of the pitfalls of the method is the ability to peek if you don’t cover each side with the string.

Here is a step by step with only one of my gifts.

First lay the string centered over the TOP of the gift. Don’t start it under the gift. Or you can start with the gift upside down and pull the string under and around.

Step 1 wrapping gifts with string
Lay the string across the top

Second, link the string, or hook it by crossing it just 90 degrees. I keep the string towards one corner so it gives it some visual interest, but you can also keep it totally centered. It is difficult to change once you have wrapped it a few times so you’ll want to decide now. You don’t need to tie it in a knot.

Step 3 wrapping gifts
Turn the string 90 degrees so they hook one another and pull to the top and bottom.

Third, flip the gift again and tie it around the string left. The tighter you tie your knots and keep the string tight the more secure your package (and yet more difficult for the receiver to get it off.) You can stop here and tie a bow and it will be extremely simple.


Bottom of my gift. You can see the intersections clearly.

I like to repeat this about three or four times. go around, flip, cross the string 90 degrees from the sides to the top and bottom, flip and tie. If I want the yarn on the bottom to be really secure, I’ll tie it around the intersections of the yarn and knot it but it’s not totally necessary.


Finished 1 gift wrapped with string.
All done!

This gift was pretty enough with the ornate design that came on the box so I just tied a simple bow and trimmed the ends. The white provided a nice contrast against the red foil and brown paper.

I didn’t add a picture of my niece’s gift but I added a few silver ornaments and tied a smaller gift on the front for her before tying a bow and curling the ends. It was really pretty.  We had to rush before I could snap a photo.

You can see under the tree another gift I did this with was my husbands Christmas pajamas. I rolled the bottoms up, then rolled them in wrapping paper, gathered the ends and used silver ribbon for the ends. I tied them once really tightly and double knotted them. To make them a little prettier, I cut the ribbon down the center before curling them with the edge of my scissors very gently to give it a little more curl but not ringlet style. You can use a toilet paper roll to put candies in and do the same thing for kids too.

Experiment and play with all sorts of things. Different boxes paired with different string, ribbon and yarns. Play with bows! You absolutely can use this as an addition to a wrapped gift having used tape too. I just use this method when I don’t have tape. Or you can also always go with the classic gift bag and tissue paper rout. Dollar store to the rescue!

Your turn!

What are your favorite ways of wrapping gifts? Do you try to keep them in simple shapes? Do you like the challenge of interesting and difficult shapes? Tell us about a time where the gift wrapping seemed to be a challenge and how you overcame it!


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