Wrapping gifts sustainably

Our 4 favourite ways to wrap that will be great for your loved ones and for nature too

Every year... colourful presents in shiny gift wrap appear under the Christmas tree. If we’re honest, we all love to get an artfully wrapped gift with an eye-catching bow and festive paper, and we’re excited about what we’ll find under the wrapping paper. However, this extravagant paper or foil is often non-recyclable, contributing to global climate change.



This year, more than ever, when we’ve had time to reflect and think about our environment, we all have a growing awareness of the need to treat nature with more care and consideration. As a result, thinking about the heaps of Christmas paper that get thrown away during the holiday period gives us an uneasy feeling rather than a festive mood. Here is our tip for something else to do instead of the Christmas market and festive parties: take some time to find a creative but environmentally friendly way of wrapping that will make your Christmas a little bit more sustainable this year. We have put together four tips for you to show how you can make your gift wrapping environmentally friendly, without having to miss out on having pretty parcels under the Christmas tree.


1. Reusable gift boxes

Using gift boxes is a particularly pretty way to have zero-waste packaging. Whereas gift paper is mostly thrown away immediately after unwrapping, there are endless ways to reuse boxes and cardboard packaging for storing things.

2. Wrap in scarves and fabric

Gifts that are wrapped in scarves and fabric look particularly eye-catching. This sustainable method comes from Japanese culture and is also known as furoshiki. This attractive and environmentally friendly method involves folding and knotting a square scarf. This not only serves as the wrapping, it is also given as part of the gift. This is a great opportunity to follow the zero-waste principle while giving presents.

For a guide to the technique, check out our Instagram highlights @hoglshoes.


3. Use of recyclable kraft paper

We can’t deny that we enjoy getting gifts that are wrapped in shiny coated paper. However, this sparkling paper is not particularly sustainable, as it is often coated with a plastic finish or film that cannot be recycled. This means that, once again, waste wrapping paper ends up piling up under the Christmas tree.
As an eco-friendly alternative, it’s a better idea to use natural brown packing paper that is up to 100% recyclable. You can give the wrapping a Christmassy look by adding a pretty (reusable) ribbon or a decoration made from twigs and baubles. You can also get creative and write or stamp a personal Christmas message on the paper to add an individual touch to the wrapping.

A tip for all those people who still don’t want to miss out on having Christmas gift wrap printed with stars or patterns: in some countries you can buy environmentally friendly, recycled wrapping paper that has the Blue Angel seal. This ecolabel guarantees, amongst other things, that the paper fibres come from 100% recovered paper and that less waste water, water and energy is used during production.


4. Natural decoration

Admittedly, wrapping something just in brown paper or a cardboard box doesn’t look that festive. You can give your present a Christmassy touch by adding decorative elements that come from nature. On your next winter walk, look out for all the things that nature has to offer. Fir twigs or colourful berries like rose hips can look very atmospheric. Olive or eucalyptus twigs can often be taken from your own houseplants. Dried orange combined with cinnamon sticks can add a bit of extra colour and a wonderful Christmas fragrance to your wrapping.

Pretty bows and ribbons are often made of plastic and are also less environmentally friendly as a result. It is therefore better to use reusable ribbons or natural materials like raffia, hemp or jute.

Whether you use an artfully knotted scarf, natural decorations you have collected yourself or pretty cartons – fantastic alternatives to traditional glittery foil and coated paper are easy to find and will ensure that you have a clear conscience at Christmas. So, get creative and give presents wrapped in your own unique and very personal way, to show your love for nature as well as for your nearest and dearest.


Check out our Instagram channel @hoglshoes for a step-by-step guide which you can find in our Instagram highlight "gift wrapping".

The Högl team wishes you lots of fun wrapping and a wonderful Christmas at home with your loved ones.