December can be so friggin’ busy. You want to see everyone in your life before the holidays, but it can seem impossible to pencil them all in. But don’t worry, we’ve got a solution: host your friends for a gift wrapping party.
Most people have gifts to wrap, and while you can do it at home alone in your pyjamas with a glass of wine in hand and Love Actually playing in the background (what, just us?), gathering a group of your fave people to do it all together is efficient, greener than doing it solo, and it’s a damn good excuse to party.
This idea came about because, as you may have assumed, we’re the type of people that like to wrap every one of our gifts in a different paper, with a variety or ribbon and bows. The problem with that preference is that there’s only so much wrapping paper a person with an averaged size dwelling can comfortably have in their possession (if you have a storage locker filled with wrapping paper please be friends with us). So, we thought: wouldn’t it be great if we pooled resources and made it social hang?!
So here’s how a wrapping party works: everyone you invite is tasked with bringing one roll of wrapping paper as well as at least one accessory or gift tag (it can be whatever they have on hand). Everyone can then swap materials, providing endless options for different wrapping styles and looks. And Love Actually can STILL be playing in the background guys. Just like that, everyone has won the holidays.
Our favourite part of a wrapping party is getting to see everyone else’s wrapping styles. Our friend Nicole is the ultimate minimalist wrapper – and then are many out there. Others are traditionalists, and you better believe there’s a lot of “more is more” wrappers out there (think multiple bows and ribbon for days – Alyssa is this person). Or if you’re like Vanessa, your “wrapping style” is measure never, cut about ten times, resulting in haggard looking sides compensated for by extra cute wrapping paper and lots of bows.
Gathering everyone together to wrap this year had me thinking that my wrapping style could benefit from a greener approach to wrapping, which was not using paper at all and instead opting for a tea towel and clothespin, so that the towel itself was part of the gift and could be reused in the recipients kitchen. Pretty sweet right? That’s a hot tip for you right there.
Below is everything you need to host a wrapping party of your own.
- Sweet Christmas playlist, which we’ve linked for you as always below.
- Love Actually (we weren’t kidding, this move should definitely be screening in the background)
Have everyone bring one of each of the following:
- Wrapping paper
- Ribbons, bows and/or other accessories like candy canes, greenery, mini ornaments, and dried oranges, which we have instructions for below
- Name tags
You should provide:
- Multiple pairs of scissors
- Lots of tape (ideally one per person)
- A signature cocktail and mocktail (ideas below)
Set up the materials across a couple of small tables throughout your place (so that everything isn’t congested in one area), or a couple of mini stations around the space you’re using. Make sure you clear lot’s of floor and/or table space for the wrapping itself.
Also, here’s how’s to make dried oranges, which is the perfect addition to just about any wrapping style:
- Preheat oven to 250 F
- Cut oranges in wheels, about 1/4 inch thick (don’t cut any thinner than this or they will turn brown, trust us!).
- Pat the wheels dry with paper towel to remove excess moisture.
- Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Place orange wheels on top of the parchment paper and place baking sheet inside the oven on the middle rack.
- Bake for 1.5 hours, then flip slices and bake for another hour. Flip the slices one last time and bake for another 30 mins (cook time is 3 hours total, flipping twice).
- Remove orange slices from oven and let cool on a cooking rack.
- Place in an air tight container or even a heating vent for 1 day and voila, you’ve got beautiful dried oranges.
Now, for the cocktail pairing. Might we suggest going the classic route of mulled wine? You really can’t go wrong serving this up. Grab our recipe here.
We also suggest having a delicious mocktail on hand. If people are bringing a number of gifts to yours, it’s quite possible they will be driving. As well, it’s good to have something ready for any abstainers in your group. We’ve got a very good mocktail recipe here.
All the feel-good tunes to get your wrapping party started.