Ditch The Paper: 5 Sustainable Gift Wrapping Ideas

At MADI Apparel, we’re not just about giving sustainable gifts during the holidays, we’re about changing the entire status quo. That means from the materials we use, to the practices we employ, to the way we wrap our products is eco-friendly, sustainable and purposeful. 

Our sustainability guarantee

  • Packaging: We keep throw-away packaging trash as minimal as possible, meaning no tissue paper or excess wrapping. Plus, all orders are packed in 100% biodegradable cotton muslin bags, and around the holiday season we hand-dye them special holiday colors with non-toxic dyes! Our customers can save these cotton bags and use them for jewelry, travel pouches for underwear or socks or dirty clothes, dresser door organization and more. 
  • Shipping: For shipping, we utilize 100% compostable/biodegradable shipping mailers with compostable tape so you don't have to worry about plastic packaging. For fragile or large orders, we ship in recyclable or reusable bubble mailers.
  • Products: Even our product hang tags are printed on biodegradable thick stock paper and we hand-write sizes and prices to eliminate printed plastic sticker sku labels. We even use reusable safety pins to tag our hand tags on products instead of plastic guns. 

So, you can say we take sustainability pretty seriously here at MADI. That’s why we wanted to share with you our favorite tips for the holiday season, like eco-friendly ways to wrap presents!


How to wrap gifts without wrapping paper

Want to join us on our mission for a more sustainable holiday season? If you’ve already taken the steps to buy more sustainable Christmas gifts (like the ones in our sustainable holiday gift guide!) it’s time to consider how you wrap your presents. 

Gift wrapping doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive. Save the planet while also saving your budget with these 4 wrapping hacks.

Use a scarf

In Japan, they utilize a wrapping style called Furoshiki, which utilizes a Furoshiki or scarf as part of the wrapping process. Stop by a thrift store in your area and snag a cute scarf and get to wrapping. 

This video will show you how to wrap a present with a scarf:

Can’t find the right scarf? Other types of fabric you can use to wrap a gift include:

  • Bedding
  • Towels
  • Cloth napkins
  • Extra fabric

Make it a gift basket

We love gift baskets and consider them the gift that keeps on giving! Pick out a basket at your local thrift store, or utilize one you already have laying around the house, and put your gifts together in a way that looks cute. 

Consider adding a scarf or handkerchief as your “tissue paper” and a few strategically placed ribbons to make your gift basket look perfectly put together.

Reuse brown paper sacks or cotton produce bags

Next time you’re at the store, ask for paper sacks instead of plastic. Then, flip them inside out and wrap your gifts with them! If you don’t have brown paper sacks, you can also use:

  • Old maps
  • Word searches
  • Newspapers
  • Art pieces (like hand-drawn ones from your children!)
  • Book pages

For an added flair, consider making your own custom stamp or using one you already have to give the paper more pizazz. We love this tutorial on how to make your own stamp with a lint roller!

Another idea? You know those cotton canvas bags used for produce instead of plastic produce bags? Use those cotton bags for gifts and tie a bow to close!

Just add a bow

Sometimes, we overthink things like how to wrap a gift. We’re here to tell you that it’s not the outside that matters. 

If the box or gift itself is cute enough, just add a bow and call it a day. And if you want a little extra, you can use what you find in nature, like a pine twig or flower, to spice it up a bit. 



Use what you have


Do you have old holiday bags laying around, just looking for a second chance at life? What about an old pillow case or tote bag that's been shoved in a corner for far too long? Give them a new job as holiday gift wrap! 

This is a win-win situation because it helps you clear out your closet while also staying true to your sustainability mission. Plus, if it's something extra cute, your receiver will think it's part of the gift itself as well!


Make this holiday extra special and sustainable by being more thoughtful with how you spend your time, money and energy. At the end of the day, what matters is the gift you’re giving and the time you’re able to spend with your loved ones. 

Still looking for that perfect gift? Shop our pre-holiday sale today! 

December 07, 2021 — Taylor Shuck

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