Wrapping Tips For Santa’s Elves

Paper Lunch Bags, Dressed Up With the Correct Giftwrap

My Mother’s Stocking Goodies

We are in a spoiler-free zone over here.  Santa is real, because the moment we stop believing around this place, is the year you start getting socks and undies from the big man, youknowhutahhhmsayin?  So let’s just *say* that over the years, while standing in line so that a certain almost-seven-year-old can get pictures with ol’ Claus, I’ve picked up a few elfin tidbits.  And let’s just *say* that the elves on YOUR detail– the elves assigned to your route, or zone, or area or whatever– may not have heard what they’re doing over in my part of the world.  It might help to hear some fresh ideas!

From this point on, I’m going to say “I” because *I* am the one that overheard these tips;  *I* wrapped these gifts and took these example pictures;  and *I’m* the one telling you about them.  But for all intents and purposes, these are 100% elf-authorized wrapping tips for helping your elves with Super Santa-style delightful deliveries.  Elf power!


A Lot Of Kiddo's Gifts From Santa

A Lot Of Kiddo’s Gifts/ Stocking Stuffers From Santa

Some Of the Creped Goodies

Some Of the Creped Goodies

I will completely admit that I adore wrapping paper.  It’s the colors and the graphics, for sure.   They tie together a theme and color scheme faster than anything.  This year I’m using red, lime green, orange, turquoises, and a smidgen of pink, with a loose woodland theme.  I was feeling like maybe my finished tree was lookin’ like a jumbled mess, but as the gifts have been purchased, and the packages have been wrapped– it has all come together.  The prints on those papers does it every time!  Now it feels cohesive, which is probably why I love the visual wonder of a cluster of boxes under the Christmas tree *almost* as much as I love opening and owning those gifts.  I’m a little wacky, but that’s visual splendor.  I heart excuses for piled-up beauty!

Plus, elegant wrappings elevate even the humblest of gifts.  It feels better to tear into a pretty package, rather than to yank something out of a flimsy gift bag.  There is sort of an anti-climactic quality with to a present that has been simply stuffed into a sack.  I like sharp corners on bright wrapping paper, I like real fabric ribbon, and I even try and use some sort of package embellishment for the more important gifts.  If I use a bag, it’s generally because I have ten little wrapped gifts I’d like to corral, and all all of that wrapping is always closely coordinated to the gift bag itself….  I’ve stopped using cheap plastic ribbon a long time ago, and I don’t do folded-over bits of giftwrap for tags.  There are plenty of suuuper-cheap and very cute things on the market that you just don’t have to do that stuff, and you’re hardly spending more money.  I’m a fan of thinking out of the box a little and doing something more unusual while still staying on a budget.

Stocking Stuffers For My Husband

Stocking Stuffers For My Husband

Elves' Giftwrap Cheat Sheet

Elves’ Giftwrap Cheat Sheet

The thing is, everyone staying at my house gets a stocking from Santa, grown-up, kid, pet, or whatever.  This is a necessary part of the magic, in my opinion.  How would it look if everyone got a stocking but mom (as happened at my house as a girl)?  Everyone knows that when it comes to being good, Mom is the *best!*  Why wouldn’t she get treats, too?!   Sooo, *everyone* gets a stocking over here, but there is a wide variety of what’s in them.  Doggie doesn’t need chocolate bars; my son has no interest in a new collar with a bell, or a set of new cafe cup coffee pods….  this creates a LOT of little packages that need to somehow be distinguished from each other.

Annnnd… how do you do tags when it’s from Santa?  I mean, everybody knows who it’s from, but we laypeople need to know who the packages are for….  So how would Santa advise his elves tackle a tag?  To– *child’s full name*, From– Santa?  This seems really awkward and cumbersome and repetitive to me here in Santaland.  I’d rather opt to not use tags at all.

Crepe Paper Bedecked Card Packs For the Boy's Stocking

Crepe Paper Bedecked Card Packs For the Boy’s Stocking

We have stockings– like normal people– but there is no possible way that the elves can wrap all those little gifties *right before* putting them into each individual stocking.  There is so so much to get done on Christmas Eve,  my though is that all wrapping should be done already.  How do they keep the gifts separate– in that big red velvet bag of Santa’s– especially if there are no tags?  It’s actually quite easy….

Santa uses a different, designated wrapping paper for each person he’s gifting to.

*Of course* Santa Claus uses different wrapping paper than we do, because that would be strange if he had the exact same rolls as us, right?  Every Winter, Santa gets NEW paper, and a little bit too much of it.  After the season, all of his excess gets accumulated in the garage, and in later years, we normies get to shop from amongst his inherited rolls in order to fit the current theme.  Works quite well, actually.  No one remembers gift wrap a few years later– my kid is very smart, but Sheldon Cooper he isn’t.  No worries in the didn’t-Santa-use-this-giftwrap-three-years-ago?-department, I promise!

Little Pink Envelopes, Holding Gum, Small Goodies

Little Pink Envelopes, Holding Gum, Small Goodies

Here’s the main thing–when Santa buys wrapping paper, he gets a different roll for every person waking up in a home.  Little Bobby gets all of his gifts wrapped in the blue paper with the colorful atomic bursts; big sister Suzie gets hers wrapped in the red wrap with the candy cane stripes;  and baby Betty’s are all bound in the green with the fresh lime polka dots.  The elves keep it all straight by writing the person’s name alongside a snippet of the wrap, all corralled on a card that is kept– hidden!– along with all of Santa’s special gift wrap.  This way, there is zero confusion on Christmas eve.

And then there are the tiny and odd-shaped gifts… there are *always* those, aren’t there?  How does an elf dress up a pack of playing cards or candy with an ugly label?  It’s really kinda hard to wrap all of that little bitty stuff, especially if you have a lot of it.  Well, that’s where the interesting and quirky ideas come in!  Because the gift itself is usually left exposed a little, it’s okay to use this same fix for the whole household’s worth of oddments.  This year, the elves have chosen two 99 cent rolls of crepe paper that they purchased– of all things– at their regular grocery store.  One is lime green, the other is this perky white with red dots which is soooo cute.  All it takes is a little loop around the ugliest part, and things like multiple packs of gum can be banded together easy-peasy.  When it comes time for stocking stuffing, it’s easy to tell who gets what, but there is still an element of presentation to the items.

Lunch Bags, Trimmed and Dressed Up

Lunch Bags, Trimmed and Dressed Up

Other ideas that I’ve, er, the elves, have used over the years include strips of red tickets (dollar store); cuted-up lunch bags with holes punched and tied with ribbon; super-cheap bulk satin ribbon that were wound around and around and around and tied in sweet bows; themed stickers on strips of construction paper; colorful envelopes with festive designs; drawstring gauze bags sold for bridal favors… there are no limits!  If a wrapping obscures the gift– like the envelopes– you can take a larger hole punch and glue a little still-decorative bit of that person’s paper to the outside.  I’m also going to try and score a few rolls of sweet holiday washi tape *after* the season, so that next year that can be my embellishment!  Or Santa’s!  Someone’s– you get my point!

The lunch bags you see to the right are just generic sacks that I bought in bulk at the grocery store.  I’ve trimmed them so they are shorter, folded and taped them, and then over the line of tape I’ve added punched circles to indicate that they are for my husband (on the left) and myself (right).  The flat pack in the middle is the scrap tube of paper from cutting off the excess, again embellished with a bit of scrap paper to tell the stocking-filler who exactly the gift is for.

Fox's Stuffed Stocking and Other Gifts

Fox’s Stuffed Stocking and Other Gifts (Along With Ever-Nosy Cat)

Choosing one embellishment– like my two 99 cent rolls of crepe paper– and buying multi packs of wrapping paper are going to save you money and time in the end.  This process allows for items to get wrapped as they are acquired and easily stashed, saving this elf as muuuuch time as possible on Christmas eve.  I hope you find something that helps you and your festive brethren!

Happy Holidays, ya’ll, I hope everybody has a safe one, and that you get everything that you want from Santa!



2 Responses to “Wrapping Tips For Santa’s Elves”

  1. Great ideas from the elves!

    In my family we reuse paper and even tags from year to year. There is a piece of Snoopy wrapping paper that has been around since I was in elementary school! (I think I got the Wizard of Oz books in it)

    We sort the tags into baggies by recipient, and it’s communal wrapping on Christmas Eve by the whole family. I’ve been handed boxes in the past, and was told: “It’s for you, from your grandmother” and wrapped and tagged!

    • Amber

      Haha, that’s awesome! You could have SO cheated the system, but it’s not as much fun! I think as long as you have a plan that works for you and your family, that’s what’s important. It’s sounds like you get quality together time with your peeps! I’d just rather not have to do any wrapping on Christmas eve, this is how I get time with my peeps… plus I get to enjoy the goodies under the tree for longer!

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