Thursday, December 12, 2013

diy Christmas wrap: sponge painting

It's probably no surprise to you that I am a lover of all things paper. long as it's made of paper and cute I'm happy. Of course, paper is expensive. Quality wrapping paper can cost more than a couple bucks. Beautiful cards are easily four dollars a pop. Gorgeous tags for all those gifts under the tree can add up.

So I thought I'd share some diy gift wrapping triumphs and frugalish Christmas wrapping tips that allow me to spend less and save more this season. Today let's talk about hand stamping or sponging our wrapping paper.

The key to being creative and frugalish with your gift wrap is to use ordinary objects in new ways. I created snowflake gift wrap with a few cheap snowflake ornaments I bought at Target during their end of the season clearance last year. 
Fast forward 11 months and here's the same snowflakes getting a workout making pretty snowflake shapes on white paper. If you're looking to get the same look, I saw some similar snowflake ornaments at the dollar store the other day. 
Embrace the imperfections of hand stamping - that's what makes the finished product unique! If you'd like to try the snowflake technique, I'd recommend using a sponge paintbrush to apply the paint to the snowflakes. P.S. I bought my roll of newsprint at Ikea last year (and it's still going strong!), but some newspapers give the end of their roll away for free. 

If you have some plain sponges and cookie cutters lying around, try sponge painting your gift wrap. I pressed a cookie cutter into an unused kitchen sponge and then cut along the lines to create the tree-shaped sponge. I added some gold paint to the green to give the trees a little Christmas cheer.
After the trees dried, I painted a few festive "cranberry strands" with the end of a small paintbrush dipped in red acrylic paint.
Please excuse the green-tinted fingers...:)

Or perhaps you'd like to go the gingerbread man route. My mom's gingerbread men have a bit of a cult following among our family and friends. People come out of the woodwork on baking day. A request for a plate of gingerbread men has even been known to be listed on Christmas lists. Moral of the story: gingerbread men are celebrated in our family, so I thought I'd continue the celebration with some whimsical gingerbread men sponge painting. 
My frugalish tip for eliminating the need for gift tags: sponge paint monograms on the presents. It's also a great way to help the little ones learn the first letter of their names. If you don't own any letter stencils, print your own on cardstock or get fancy and paint your own curvy monogram letters. 
Raid the craft store's clearance ribbon bins or pick up some festive ribbon at the dollar store to add the finishing touch to your gifts. 
Happy wrapping! More diy Christmas gift wrap ideas coming your way in the next few days. Until then check out other fabulous projects at The Party BunchLink Party Palooza, and Made By You Monday!


  1. So fun! I might do this with the kids. Katie would love it!

    1. Must say I thoroughly enjoyed reconnecting with my inner child sponge painter :)

  2. The gingerbread paper is especially cute! :) I've found some lovely free printable gift tags online that I used last year and this year, you should check them out: (I have a weakness for pretty presents too).

    1. Those are definitely some cute tags!!