Wrap it in a Bow: Green Calgary's Gift Wrapping Guide

Posted on December 13, 2019


We hope our 2019 Gift Guide gave you some ideas for great green gifts to give to everyone! When we have a gift to wrap, however, what are our options to make it as green as possible, and where does the wrap go when we're done with it? I've listed some wrapping options first, then where to put your wrapping waste at the end. Without further ado!


No wrap: You heard it right! No wrapping is the best way to give nature a break. If you're gifting an experience or a donation, this is a no brainer, but even for other gifts, you might be okay with leaving it uncovered!

Reusable gift bags: Reusable gift bags, especially out of durable materials like cloth, are second to none when it comes to green gift giving. The bag itself is like another gift and once you get a good supply of these out to your friends and family, you can trade them back and forth for years! They're also easy to make for anyone with a sewing machine.

Wrap it in another gift: Folding up a blanket or a sweater that you're giving someone and then tucking another gift inside makes for a great wrapping, plus efficient gift-giving!

Wrap in a towel or cloth: Sometimes it can be just this simple to keep a gift a surprise, while also avoiding wrapping paper. These items can be reused, as well!

Recycled or reused gift wrap: You can buy gift wrap made from recycled paper or save your own to reduce your use of new paper products!

Tie it up with a bow: Plastic disposable bows aren't the best, but in this case you could even use one of those. Getting a length of ribbon and cutting it to tie around all your unwrapped presents lends them an air of class without needing the wrapping paper. Combine nice ribbon with any of the above options to up your green wrapping game, too!


What Goes Where?

Here's the answers to all your burning wrapping paper recycling questions!

Paper wrap: Whether glossy or matte, this goes into your blue bin! Tissue paper, too. Remove anything like string or tags, and as much tape as possible (but no need to be too meticulous about that) and crumple it into a ball.

Foil or metallic gift wrap: Anything that looks metallic, whether just glittery or actually foil-like, this goes into the garbage - black bin.

Ribbons and bows: If you really can't reuse them, they go into the black bin.

Tape: Black bin.

Tags: Both from wrapping and price tags, as long as it looks and feels like paper, you can put it in the blue bin. Just make sure to remove tape, string, etc.


If we didn't list it above, check out the City of Calgary's What Goes Where holiday page for more options. Share your own tips for waste free holidays with us on our social media accounts TwitterFacebook, and Instagram!