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Wanda Wen Gift Wrapping Advice
Rhiannon Ally: Your gift is incomplete without a beautiful and thoughtful extra touch. And believe it or not, it can all be found in the gift wrapping.
Wanda Wen author of “The Art of Gift Wrapping” is here to give her expert tips and techniques for wrapping those perfect little packages.
Wanda Wen: Thank you very much.
Rhiannon Ally: Now we’ve all seen those beautifully wrapped presents, what does a nice wrapping say to the person you’re giving the gift to?
Wanda Wen: Well, a nice wrapping says that you care. When I give a gift, there’s two things that I do or that that I’m giving as a little bit of myself and also honoring the other person.
So when I give a gift, I always choose materials that are – that say a little bit about my esthetic but also what that other person likes.
Rhiannon Ally: Now what does the perfect wrapping station? I didn’t even know you needed a wrapping station.
Wanda Wen: Now — okay.
Rhiannon Ally: What should you have?
Wanda Wen: Well, a wrapping station is — it’s very basic and most people have these things in their homes.
So first of all there’s tape. And I love using double stick tape. A lot of people have just single sided tape on hand. Scotch Brand makes this great sort of a pop-up tape dispenser which is fun. Then you need a good pair of scissors or a paper cutter. This is Scotch Brand paper cutter. What else was nice are various things to tie your packages with whether they’re classic ribbons. This is a hand made silk.
Rhiannon Ally: That’s beautiful.
Wanda Wen: It is on hand made silk. This is organdie by Midori. And also I love using twines and embroidery thread. You can use yarns. Yarns are great.
And then you also need other little things that you would need as a hole puncher. I also encourage going outside and finding stones and leaves and twigs. Step outside, go out in the nature and find your gift toppers there.
Rhiannon Ally: What a great idea.
Wanda Wen: Yeah, well because—
Rhiannon Ally: Who would have ever thought?
Wanda Wen: Sure. I mean you know we’re all walking along the side walk. And especially after rainstorm, you could find some really great gift toppers outside.
Rhiannon Ally: Oh, good tip. Okay. When it comes—
Wanda Wen: Or the other thing is a lot of people have great photographs that you can use as a gift topper. And you could see here how I’ve embellished and used the sewing machine here or vintage stamps.
Rhiannon Ally: All great tips.
Now what about when it actually comes to wrapping the gift?
Wanda Wen: Okay.
Rhiannon Ally: Mine always looks so messy.
Wanda Wen: Well, I’m sure — hopefully after this session, you’ll get a few more tips.
One other thing is that is probably the — the hardest thing for people to do is get the perfect size paper to wrap with.
So figuring out the width of a paper is generally pretty easy. You can see how I have enough paper to go around this box, the length of the paper but the width is where people have the hardest time.
Making sure that you have enough to fold on other side of each end of the box so my trick is to take your box, bring it up to one end of the paper, bring your paper up and give yourself about two inch margin. Then the opposite end right here on the bottom corner, that is your cut line.
Okay, I’m going to take this pair of scissor and cut.
Rhiannon Ally: So that’s how you know you have enough.
Wanda Wen: That’s how you know you have enough and that’s all that’s needed.
Rhiannon Ally: So then you won’t waste any cut out.
Wanda Wen: You don’t anything.
And then the other thing is keep this piece of paper. Don’t throw it away. You could use this as a decorative band. Let’s say if you have a gift and you want to use this as sort of a quasi-ribbon, you can use this like that.
Rhiannon Ally: Oh, great.
Wanda Wen: So don’t throw these little pieces of paper away. Okay.
So then you take — what I like to do is I always encourage folding in one end so that when you bring this up — and I used double stick tape like I said. When you bring this up you’ve got a nice.
Rhiannon Ally: Clean edge.
Wanda Wen: Clean edge. And it’s nice and folded.
And then all you do is bring in your ends. And you can see how I’m sort of massaging the box as I do this. You could see I’m using the palm of my hands to get all the air bubbles out and making sure that I crease at every point. Bring this down.
Okay. And the key is creasing, creasing your paper so that you’ve got nice clean sharp edges.
Rhiannon Ally: I see why you have the double sided tape. That makes sense now.
Wanda Wen: Right? Do you see that? Okay and there you go.
Rhiannon Ally: And then make sure it sticks.
Wanda Wen: Yeah. And I’m going to do the other side. Okay. Bring this in. Okay.
And if you’re going to use single sided tape, you could use that too. This is a great dispenser by Scotch and you can bring this here.
Rhiannon Ally: Perfect.
Wanda Wen: Put a piece of tape. Okay.
Rhiannon Ally: Look at that. That looks wonderful. Thank you so much.
Wanda Wen: Now just a couple, just a great little tip. Just use your pointer finger and your thumb and pinch the edges so that you sort of get like this great architectural clean edge.
Rhiannon Ally: That looks great.
Wanda Wen: Okay.
Rhiannon Ally: That looks wonderful. Thank you so much.
And for lots of other creative ways to wrap a thoughtful present, pick up Wanda’s book. It’s called “The Art of Gift Wrapping”. You’ll be able to see how to wrap things that aren’t quite as easy as box it is available now.