7 easy ways to upcycle your brown paper grocery bags into wrapping paper


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While I do my best to use reusable bags, I admit I often forget them at home. If you’re anything like me, you’ve got a stack of brown paper grocery bags from Trader Joe’s waiting to be recycled. But why not give them another life as an eco-friendly wrapping paper for the holidays?

There are so many different ways to upcycle brown paper bags. You can paint them, attach evergreen sprigs with string to give your presents a brand-new look. If you’re in need of some inspiration, these are some of the cutest—and easiest!—paper bag wrapping ideas to try this season.

The best paper bag wrapping paper ideas

Photo: Lovely Indeed

1. DIY botanical wrapping paper

Grab a few sprigs of berries or some evergreen on your walk, attach it to your gift with string, and you’re good to go.

Photo: Almost Makes Perfect

2. Brushstroke gift wrap

For a quick design, create simple brushstrokes on your paper bag wrapping paper with a square edge paint brush.

Photo: Splash of Something

3. Paper straw stars

Give those paper straws sitting in your cupboard a new life by creating this simple star design for the front of your gifts.

Photo: Fellow Fellow

4. DIY Christmas tree gift toppers

All you need to do is go outside and pick up some sticks then wrap them with embroidery thread to create these cute Christmas tree gift toppers.

Photo: Something Turquoise

5. Word search gift wrap

Turn gift giving into a fun puzzle by skipping the name tags and attaching a word search instead.

Photo: The House That Lars Built

6. Polka dot wrapping paper

Use a white stamp pad and pencil eraser to create perfect little polka dots on your paper bag.

Photo: Armelle

7. Name garland

Utilize those alphabet kits from craft stores to string together fun name banners to spruce up your gifts.

Now that you know how to wrap up presents the eco-friendly way, check out these 12 sustainable gift options and these hygge-inspired gifts for homebodies.

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