Simple Frugal Christmas Gift Wrapping Ideas

Simple Frugal Christmas Gift Wrapping Ideas

There are many money saving tips you can use to create a beautiful Christmas for your family and friends. You don’t have to spend your entire pay check on gift bags and ribbons. There are many simple, frugal Christmas gift wrapping ideas that will help you stick to your budget. These gifts are so beautiful that no one will ever know you didn’t spend a fortune on wrapping paper.

Beautifully wrapped present with cheap wrapping paper option.
Use craft paper or cut paper bags and embellish with stickers, tags and twine.

Christmas Gift Wrapping Ideas

We’re going to get you started with a collection of money-saving gift wrapping ideas, but there’s no substitute for your own creativity.

Repurposing Cards as Holiday Gift Tags

You can save money on gift-wrapping with an investment of time. This can be a fun project for your entire family. Sort last year’s Christmas cards by color, size and theme. You can either use the front of the card or cut out portions of the card, such as an elf or sleigh. 

  • Cut last year’s Christmas cards and use for holiday gift tags. Cut so there’s space for writing the names of to and from.
  • Use a hole puncher to create a hole and thread ribbon, cord or yarn through it.
  • Use a cutout shape for your gift tag.
  • You can write on the back or front of your new tag.

Make Your Own: Christmas Gift Wrapping Ideas

  • Use white or brown newsprint paper for wrapping paper. Purchase newsprint or craft paper by the roll at your local newspaper or other outlet.
  • Use newspaper or magazine pages to wrap up presents and tie up with a beautiful red bow. 
  • Cut up a paper grocery bag and use the plain side on the outside.
  • Reuse gift bags you’ve received. Most still look new after one use.
  • Cut up clothes that no longer fit, especially if the print on the material is beautiful and wrap your gifts in fabric.

Stencils, Stamps and Cookie Cutters

Select Christmas stencils to print the top and sides of your package. (You may prefer to stencil the paper first allow to dry and then wrap presents.

  • You may prefer to use Christmas stamps instead of stencils.
  • Invest in a couple of matching colors to scroll different messages between the stamps and stencils, such as “Merry Christmas”, “Christmas for You”, “Joy to the World”, “Peace on Earth” and “Jingle Bells”.
  • If you’re artistic, you may prefer to draw clusters of holly and berries.
  • You can draw a stylized gift tag on the wrapping paper for a truly special touch.
  • Create tiny loop bows with red and green narrow ribbon and hot glue to the white newsprint paper for a fun topping instead of large commercial bows.

Make Reindeer Paper

Break out the finger paint and stamp the newsprint paper by creating a fist and using the side of your hand as a stencil.

  • Press the side of your fist into the paint and then press it onto the paper.
  • Allow enough space between these prints so once dry, you can use a matching marker to draw antlers from the crest formed by your knuckle.
  • You can mix antler colors and draw and eye on your reindeer prints.
  • You may want to embellish your reindeer further.

Cookie Cutter Paper Designs

Another way you can decorate plain paper is to use cookie cutters. Dip into the paint blot lightly on a piece of paper towel to remove excess and then use as a stamp on the paper. The image won’t be highly refined, but that’s the look you’re going for. Use a Christmas tree cookie cutter and decorate using markers, a paint pen or brush.

How to Make a Curly Bow Out of Ribbon

This type of bow can be made from curling ribbon spools. You can purchase curling ribbon bows from $1.99 to 4.99 or more. This project will save you lots of money while being a fun afternoon craft with the kids. Select colors and types of curly ribbons you want to use. You should be able to make five to six bows per spool, depending on how large you make the bows.  


  • Spools of curling ribbon
  • Pair of scissors
  • Cardstock or old Christmas cards
  • Double faced tape
  • Stapler

Make a Bow Out of Ribbon

  1. Cut ribbon lengths between 12” and 18” depending on the size of bow you want to make.
  2. Add all the lengths together and grasp in the center so there are even lengths on either side.
  3. Use one blade of scissors and firmly, but not forcefully pull across the ribbon length.
  4. The ribbon will curl.
  5. Continue until all ribbon ends have been curled.
  6. You can staple the center of the ribbons onto a small piece of cardstock or an old Christmas card.
  7. Used double stick tape to attach to gifts.

Frugal Gift Wrapping Ideas

It’s fun and easy to design frugal gift wrapping paper. You can use many items to embellish your gifts once you’ve decorated the paper. A gift that you’ve put so much time and effort into shows how much you care about the recipient. Your beautiful homemade wrapping paper is sure to make an impression this holiday season.


AuthorSally Painter

"Everyone can have a beautiful home decor. It just takes a little creativity," says author and freelance writer Sally Painter. This former commercial and residential designer is also a Feng Shui practitioner and believes that, "Everything you choose to put in your home should resonate with you emotionally. If it doesn't - get rid of it!"