DECORAH-- Visions of sugar plums are not dancing in our heads when we are faced with a pile of gifts to wrap and knowing that there are only a couple of weeks left until Christmas. The time frame for some of the gifts is even shorter if they must be mailed to family and friends, thus increasing our stress level. Many people, including myself, dislike wrapping presents if they do not end up looking perfect. Feel free to blame OCD. Wrapping gifts requires a number of motor skills that are not intuitive to everyone as well as personality traits. If you are one of those individuals, don’t despair, there are a few tricks that will make wrapping presents easier and ensure that your gifts are presentable enough to put under the tree.
Tip #1: Look Sharp
Cutting a straight line is difficult for many gift givers even though they have had years of practice. The key is to make sure that you use a sharp paper scissor. Repeat paper scissor. It is highly recommended that you purchase wrapping paper that have grid lines on the back.
Tip #2: Stand Firm
Professionally wrapped gifts look smooth. Tightly creased folds and corners are a result of firmly creasing each fold. A butter knife or your fingernail are great tools for creating these well-creased folds. Think of wrapping gifts as an exercise in origami which also requires well-creased edges.
Tip #3: Stick it to 'Em
Neatly taping the paper is another challenge that causes gift-givers frustration. The key is to take your time and be patient. If you get in a hurry you will yank out an arm's length of tape when you only need one inch. Or, you will get the tape stuck sticky side together. Make sure not to buy cheap tape, as the tape cutter will not be sharp. Taking your time will ensure that each strip of tape is the same size and cut even. Professionals purchase invisible tape so you don’t see their mistakes as easily.
Tip #4: Get Creative
Now is time to apply your creative talents. Carefully look your package over and strategically place the ribbon and bows to add beauty but at the same time hide mistakes.
Tip #5: It's in the Bag
Forget the wrapping paper and only use only gift bags and tissue paper. No need to use scissors or tape. Easy and stress-free. Suggest telling the receivers that if they save the bag and return it for future use, they are sure to receive another gift next year.
To completely eliminate frustration due to the cost of wasting costly wrapping supplies and not being able to cut a straight line or tear the same size strips of paper, only shop at stores that offer free wrapping with your purchase.
Below is a particle list of stores in downtown Decorah that offer free wrapping with a purchase. Make sure to ask when shopping in other stores if they wrap gifts as well!
- Agora Arts (On most items)
- Ace Kitchen Place (Purchase must be over $10)
- Donlon HealthMart Pharmacy and Toy Jungle
- Dragonfly Books
- Fancy Pants
- Hammel Jewelry
- Happiness Is
- KD Rae
- Master's Touch (On regular priced merchandise valued at $10 or more)
- Milkhouse Candles & Gifts
- Marilyn’s Hallmark
- Red Roxy Quilt Co.