Creative Uses For Wrapping Paper { Luxe Decorating }

by Penny on April 15, 2009

Photo: Rie Elise Larsen { via Decor8 }

We all use wrapping and tissue paper for the obvious, but with so much beautiful, reasonably-priced paper available, there are many more options than simple gifting.

To be perfectly honest, I do not like crafts all that much, but I LOVE wrapping paper.  I am known for my overenthusiastic gift wrapping.  My philosophy?  Make the wrap beautiful and special and the trim simple (I usually opt for silk ribbon from Paper Source).  For this reason, I have an overage of amazing sheet wrap.  Lately, I’ve been thinking about how one might use this relatively cheap item for something other than gift wrapping.

I’ve shared my thoughts, from simple ideas to more involved projects.  My goal is to spark your creativity and utilize what could only be considered as dirt-cheap art.  I have also included a short list of resources at the end of the post.


Idea No. 1 | Framed

Greeting cards, postcards and wrap are an inexpensive, highly accessible and beautiful option for framed art.  I’ve already shared how I sometimes frame cards, and wrap can be utilized in much the same manner, while affording you even more options.  And, given your individual style, the possibilities are endless.  Wrap can be framed in a series, a cluster or a knockout over-sized piece.

Another great idea is to locate a tiered easel display for showcasing wrap.  My boss has done this in his office, using all red to orange tones.  It’s beautiful!

Photo: Darling Darleen

Photo: Rang Decor

Photo: Madison Magazine

Photo: Penny

Photo: Craft Stylish

Photo: Another Shade Of Grey

Photo: Apartment Therapy Los Angeles

Idea No. 2 | Rolled In A Vase

I do this quite a bit, actually, I have a large pot filled with rolled wrap behind my monitor at work, and a tall skinny vase at my home desk showcasing a few pieces of brightly-colored handmade wrap.  It looks dramatic and lasts longer than flowers!

Photo: Penny

Photo: Penny

Photo: Rie Elise Larsen { via Decor8 }

Idea No. 3 | Pinned To A Bulletin Board

Wrap adds a lovely design element to a basic bulletin board when pinned on as a backdrop.  Also?  If you’re stuck in a cubicle for 8 hours a day, hanging some pretty sheets of wrap in your workspace will cheer you up instantly.

Photos: Penny

Ideal No. 4 | Book Covers

Take a cue from your 8 year-old self and cover your books with wrap.  This is also an excellent idea for gifting, especially if the recipient is embarking on a voyage.  Just add ribbon!

Another idea?  Wrap basic matchboxes and give them as gifts along with a great candle.

Photo: Penny

Idea No. 5 | Modified As Ribbon

I often use wrap to create mock-ribbon when I am either out of ribbon or feel like wrapping a gift to look more graphic.  Don’t be concerned with creating perfectly symmetrical strips; cut a long piece of wrap, fold either side inward and allow it to lay unevenly.  It will look more compelling.

Photos: Penny

Idea No. 6 | Line Your Drawers, Cart Or Tray

An excellent option for drawers housing clothing or to spruce up a drinks or appetizer tray.

Another idea? Line a shoddy looking cocktail tray with wrap to give it a shock of color.

Photo: Crafty Nest

Photo: Apartment Therapy Los Angeles

Idea No. 7 | Place Mats & Table Runners

Use these Jardin Japonais and Fruits Deguises paper placemats as inspiration for creating your own.  Great for fun summer parties!

Photos: Bunny Maxwell

Idea No. 8 | Paper Flowers

The possibilities are endless here; you can affix them to large branches for a spring centerpiece, use them as cupcake toppers or pin them to your lapel.

Photo: Martha Stewart

Idea No. 9 | Handmade Greeting Cards

Card-makers (notably Papyrus) already do this, so why don’t you?

Card: ThePoint

Card: Blue Cake & Buttercup

Photo: Penny

Photo: Penny

Idea No. 10 | Light It Up

“Reupholster” a simple lamp.  Choose a non-embellished wrap.  I covered the lamp (from IKEA) below at my office.

Another idea?  Wrap strips of paper around plain candles.

Photo: Penny

Other Ideas

Favorite Resources

  • Flax { if you’re ever in SF you must stop in and check out their awesome selection of sheeted wrap }
  • Papyrus { they carry some lovely handmade wraps sourced from South Asia and a nice selection of Cavallini sheeted wrap }
  • Paper Mojo { a great online assortment, which you can search for by color }
  • Paper Source
  • Kate’s Paperie
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{ 4 trackbacks }

Welcome To Penny Luxe! | Penny Luxe
May 3, 2009 at 7:34 pm
Paper Doll Blog » scrap wrap
December 31, 2010 at 10:32 pm
12 Days of Christmas:: Uses For Leftover Tissue Paper & Wrapping Paper
April 10, 2012 at 7:20 pm
Last Minute Holiday Decor Ideas – Simply Stated Blogs | Real Simple
December 20, 2012 at 3:23 pm

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 anonanimal April 15, 2009 at 9:26 am

This is such a great post! Thank you.
I’m definitely going to try framing some paper.
& I love the idea of Can Planters. I’m moving out soon and since I won’t have a garden anymore, I will try having indoor plants.

2 Penny April 15, 2009 at 11:00 am

Susan….I can’t wait to find out! I have some ideas but email me!

3 Susan April 15, 2009 at 10:45 am

wow, i love all of these. i NEVER would have considered…well…any of them. awesome.

ALSO, i’m so constantly inspired by you, that you really made my day by posting your inspiration boards- because on one of your boards includes some work that i have done, believe or not. (im sure you’ll be able to figure out which one, but if you can’t, i’ll email it to you, for the sake of somewhat anonymity on the internet) i work at a place that jezebel loves to hate on- but i’m a photo shoot producer, so i can only speak for the photo aspects of it :) (not to mention they have an incredible skewed sense of what actually happens at magazines and how they work, so i try not to take it too much to heart)

4 stephanie April 15, 2009 at 10:58 am

what a lovely post, so many great photos to illustrate the ideas. When I lived in Northern California, I used some paper that I loved and put it on top of my dresser then covered it will glass. It looked pretty and stayed preserved because of the glass protector.

5 Claire April 15, 2009 at 11:43 am

I love all of these ideas! I definitely wouldn’t be able to do the rolls in a vase because of my ridiculously mischievous cat, but I think that looks awesome.

I’m definitely going to try the lamp idea because it is really hard to find a decent looking lamp shade. Great stuff!

6 SarahMC April 15, 2009 at 12:46 pm

I thought I came up with the idea of framing Paper Source sheets! It looks so great, doesn’t it??
I also used some sheets to line the back walls of a very large shelf that looked super boring beforehand.

7 Claudia April 15, 2009 at 12:50 pm

I’ve also done the whole framing thing, its so cheap but looks so cute. But I LOVE all of these ideas. I have just been tossing around the idea of making a bulletin board. Question, for the cocktail tray suggestion, I love it but would you use some sort of gloss paint/sealer over the top?

8 Coco April 15, 2009 at 1:07 pm

Oh wow, this is FANTASTIC! These are such great ideas, I can’t wait to try them out.

9 Britni (VadgeWig) April 15, 2009 at 1:42 pm

These are things I never would have considered until I started watching those makeover on a budget shows where they’re redoing whole rooms on, like, $1000. Cheap artwork! Awesome.

10 Tiffany April 16, 2009 at 9:32 am

I really like the idea of framing it. I may have to use that one! You’ve got a great blog here. I’ve enjoyed your posts on problogger forums too.

11 bb April 17, 2009 at 10:52 am

AMAZING ideas! I literally went to a paper store today and picked up some fabulous paper sheets – I’ve had this amazing frame waiting to be filled for a while, and now I can’t wait to get home and play around.

12 MostlyHarmless April 17, 2009 at 1:03 pm

Ze Mozt Exzellent!! I cant wait to try out the framing… and I am already on my way to roll up the lamp shade!

13 Sue M August 24, 2011 at 7:00 pm

Was looking at your site to see if I could find anything about using gift wrap to paper walls. I’ve know that I’ve heard it can be done, but I don’t remember what to use to stick it to the walls or if you have to coat it with anything once it’s up. Thank you.

14 asi December 26, 2011 at 12:01 am

Just found your site through Jezebel (and I was randomly on it after being away for a long time). Love your blog and am looking forward to following it!

15 cole April 6, 2012 at 1:17 am

You need more comments. Pinned this post to Pinterest. Was looking for ideas for framing paper. Got SO much more!

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