DIY Holiday Gift-Wrapping Tips

Updated: Feb. 07, 2023

Spread some holiday cheer with these DIY gift wrap ideas – ribbon you can make in your shop, ingenious wrapping paper storage tricks, and more.

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FH14JAU_550_08_006 gift wrap pvc pipe storage
Family Handyman

Gift Wrap Rack

Here’s a terrific way to keep rolls of gift wrapping paper and ribbon handy, dust-free and unwrinkled. Simply glue together a bunch of 30-inch-long pieces of three-inch PVC waste pipe with all-purpose PVC glue.

The rack can sit right on your worktable and you can store it underneath or in a closet.

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Family Handyman

Soften Old Tape

Revive old masking tape or painter’s tape by putting it in the microwave for ten seconds. The heat will soften up the adhesive allowing it to easily pull off the roll.

Got a smelly/dirty microwave? Check out our tips for making it fresh and sparkly clean.

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Spool Center

If you keep your tape, twine and ribbon spools in a drawer, you’re wasting valuable space. Instead, screw a paper towel holder to the window trim in your craft room and slide the rolls on the holder.

You’ll know where everything is and you can pull off just the amount you need.

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Family Handyman

Gift-Wrapping Center

Instead of littering your kitchen counter or dining room table with gift-wrapping paraphernalia every time you wrap a present, set up your Workmate workbench in a corner of your basement.

Screw a 2×4 cleat to a piece of plywood, and presto, you have a wrapping table where you can leave all your supplies until the season is over. If you don’t have a Workmate workbench, here are four simple-to-build-and take-apart tables.

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Family Handyman

Create a Gift Wrap Station

Make gift-wrapping easier and more fun with this simple, super-functional wrap station. Curved pegboard hooks hold wrapping paper rolls with wooden dowel inserts.

Long, straight pegboard hooks hold spools of ribbon and short lengths of PVC pipe that you can fill with pens. You can create places to store whatever you use to wrap all of your gifts.

Take your piece of pegboard and roll on a coat of primer followed by gloss or semigloss paint (glossy paints are easier to wipe clean). Apply light coats so you don’t clog the holes. Then snazz it up with a frame.

After attaching the pegboard to a 1×3 frame, add corner blocks and trim with hot-melt glue— no fancy miter cuts or fasteners needed. Discover lots more pegboard tips and tricks here.

If you have to toss out any unneeded wrapping paper, it’s important to know what type of wrapping paper is recyclable.

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NEWFH98DJA_PARCEL_02 Spray foam to protect breakables and fragile items packaging

Packaging Fragile Parcels

If you’re sending a fragile gift, protect it with an expanding foam sealant. First, double-wrap the item in plastic bags, then cover the bottom of your box with two to three in. of spray foam. After about 45 minutes, when the foam has expanded and begun to harden, put the item in the box.

Then line the box with a plastic bag large enough to cover the item and the sides of the box. Partially fill the box with foam, covering the gift but leaving a couple of inches for the foam to expand.

Let the foam set overnight before handling the package. If the foam expands past the top of the box, just cut away the excess with a knife. A can of regular foam — not the ‘minimal expanding’ version — fills almost a cubic foot.

If you’re not familiar with expanding foam sealant, here are 17 ways to master this versatile product.

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gift wrap organizer

Corral Your Gift Wrap

Propping up rolls of gift wrap in the corner of a hall closet often means wrinkled, torn or lost rolls. Here’s a way to keep the rolls neatly organized and easy to reach.

Make a wrapping paper ‘corral’ by screwing a small section of wire closet shelving vertically to the side of a closet wall. Just slide the rolls in and out of the corral — they won’t tumble over or get lost behind the coats.

Up next, check out more closet decluttering tips here.